"The First Spectacular Opera Film in COLOR! Surging brilliantly beyond the confines of the stage -- its glorious arias sung by the great operatic voices of our age -- its powerful drama portrayed by a brilliant cast... AIDA is THE film event of the decade!
So began the press releases of this 1954 classic, one of the earliest and best international color releases of cinematic opera. The film was make opera accessible to the masses, and it succeeds perfectly in doing so. Surely, the general public would not sit still for a love story about two young lovers in exotic ancient Egypt if played by the typical overweight and overage tenor and soprano with the vocal equipment to sing the glorious music properly. Hence the visual substitution of the beautiful principals (a young Loren, handsome Della Marra, and a slinky Ms. Maxwell) who make the story much more believable. The film succeeds in giving those not familiar with the plot or the music a better chance at being wooed into the lovely arias who otherwise might not be. Altogether, an enchanting introduction to one of Verdi's great works.
Our film is a superb Dye-Transfer Technicolor print and its vivid, saturated colors are ideal in making this great opera's staging come to life. All singing is in the original Italian, with narration at the beginning of key scenes in English... presented just as the film was originally released in the United States in October of 1954.