Honestly and truly haven’t a clue as to why; but, I think it took this film to help me articulate why I love 60s horror so much. True, we didn’t get much of it and there are certainly more creatively fertile decades for the genre. Nevertheless, what we did get was often remarkably atmospheric and brimming with well-trained visual acumen. Such is the case with Jack Clayton’s film here.
Look, obviously, this was gonna be a lot to process during and after watching it. Comes with the territory considering what it’s adapting.
My take? It feels as if David Lean and Ken Russell co-directed the Milius screenplay for CONAN THE BARBARIAN. The raw history-as-fantasy (and vice versa) via massive tableaus of past and future merging before your eyes. Genuinely hypnotic and absorbing in ways few modern movies (hell, few movies) ever are.
The second it ended, it felt like I was snapped back from a trance.