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Back From Eternity (1956)


kingrat
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Did anyone else see BACK FROM ETERNITY (1956)? I thought this was quite enjoyable, with a cast including Robert Ryan, Anita Ekberg, Rod Steiger, Beulah Bondi, Gene Barry, and Phyllis Kirk, as well as Jesse White, one of those actors you immediately recognize but have no idea what his name is. Well directed by John Farrow. Ryan pilots a plane which goes down in the South American jungle. Rod Steiger is well-cast as a German-born South American revolutionary, although you may be amused by his vocal approach: a Marlon Brando imitation. Anita Ekberg, who hadn't yet taken her bath in the Trevi fountain in LA DOLCE VITA, plays the "good bad girl" role.

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I have long felt *Back From Eternity* was superior to the original 1939 movie, but my praise of this film has often fallen on deaf ears.

 

When comparing the films back to back, I'm always left with the impression that the '56 cast simply perform better as an ensemble. Ekberg might not be the greatest actress, but she's very effective here. Andes and White are good team players and Bondi, Steiger, and Ryan are excellent as always. I might take C. Aubrey Smith as Professor Spengler from the original cast, but everyone else is pitch perfect.

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It's an interesting comparison. *Five Came Back* is just suprisingly good. It's a compelling story, told quite effectively. I really wasn't expecting something quite so good when I stumbled on to it. I haven't seen *Back From Eternity* in a while but I remember I went into it with bigger expectations.

 

I really like them both but I would agree with you that the later cast has an edge on the earlier one.. Ryan and Bondi are tops and, though I'm not always a fan of Steiger, he is very effective here.

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