Bette Davis, Charlton Heston, Clark Gable, David Niven, George Brent, George Sanders, Gone With the Wind, Grace Kelly, Hedy Lamarr, Jean Harlow, Judy Garland, Lana Turner, Linda Darnell, Lizabeth Scott, Marilyn Monroe, Monique classique, Olivia de Havilland, Rita Hayworth, Robert Taylor, Vivien Leigh
One of the nicest Technicolor achievements of the 1940s, “Blood and Sand” will capture your attention from the very beginning. The film depicts the life of a famous bullfighter, Juan Gallardo, who is doomed to have a tragic destiny as soon as he reaches stardom. Tyrone Power is in the leading role and he plays to perfection a man torn between the love for his wife and the passion for his lover, but also between the quiet family life and the demanding career, that later ruins his existence. Despite his glorious years, Juan knows very well what is the immediate fall after the rise. His tormented destiny is worsened after he meets a femme fatale, the exotic Doña Sol, who is masterfully played by Rita Hayworth (the director Rouben Mamoulian himself said in an interview that Rita was his choice, because she was perfect for the part). On the other side, Juan is still very much in love with his gentle wife, Carmen, played by the beautiful Linda Darnell. Unfortunately, he puts an end to his relationship with Doña Sol much too late, the moment when his life seems to be compromised. His wife’s forgiveness and faith in Saint Mary can’t help him any longer. He dies in apparent glory, at a young age – certainly the price he had to pay for all his sins. “Blood and Sand” was a successful production, that earned an Oscar for Best Cinematography, Color, and a nomination for Best Art Direction-Interior Decoration, Color. It was filmed very nicely and all the stars (including the veteran Nazimova as Juan’s mother) gave a wonderful performance. I highly recommend you to watch this film also because you will get to see a memorable dance number of Rita Hayworth and Anthony Quinn. As a matter of fact, this film is a “must” for all the fans of Rita Hayworth and not only, so whenever you have the chance to find it, don’t hesitate to watch it.