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To accomplish this, Oscar-winning cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond was lured back to his homeland, which he fled in during the Hungarian uprising, to shoot kaatona first feature ever in Hungary. Zsigmond teamed with first-time director Csaba Kael and screenwriter Gabor Meszoly, who adapted Jozsef Katona’s play, which in turn inspired the Ferenc Erkel opera with its libretto by Beni Egressy. So much for the heavy-on-the-accents pedigree of the opera, based on 13th century legend.

With actual early Gothic castles and unspoiled countryside as its settings, the filmmakers respect the solemn majesty of the opera, but Zsigmond, shooting in muted color, brings to it a remarkable fluidity and cinematic grace.

The filmmakers furthermore take the opportunity, in the opera’s move from stage to screen, to reveal considerable psychological complexity in the characters.

The word “ban,” a long-ago discarded term designating noble rank, in this instance refers to the status of Bank Atilla Kiss B.


Gertrud is Meranian rather than Bbank and wastes no time in moving her countrymen into positions of power. While off traveling through the countryside to ascertain the condition and needs of the people, Bank has left his beautiful, adored young wife Melinda Andrea Rost in the care of the court as a lady-in-waiting to the queen.

As Bank is discovering widespread famine and oppression, the honorable and faithful Melinda is finding herself at the mercy of Gertrud’s younger brother, Prince Otto of Meran Denes Gulyas. His passionate pursuit of Melinda is jozsdf by Gertrud, who also pressures Melinda to submit to her brother’s advances.

The filmmakers respect the heady 19th century melodrama inherent in the material yet enrich it in revealing the conflict in Otto between love and lust. Similarly, Bank himself is conflicted as a man who takes honor and duty seriously and thus is slow to believe the worst about Gertrud.

Bánk bán (play) – Wikipedia

It would take an opera expert to judge the merits of “Bank Ban” and its renowned singers. But to the layman Erkel’s music soars, and the singers’ voices sound glorious. Erkel’s emotion-charged music has been compared to that of middle-period Verdi, and “Bank Ban” is an altogether stirring experience in an inspired meld of the visual and the aural. Erkel and Egressy wrote the opera at a time when Hungary was under the domination of the Hapsburgs, and given the country’s turbulent history, it is clear why “Bank Ban,” as a fervent protest of foreign occupation and an equally impassioned expression of national pride, resonates so strongly with the Hungarian people to this day.


Coincidentally, “Bank Ban” became the subject of heated parliamentary debate last year as one of a series of state-supported productions intended to celebrate Hungarian history and culture at a time when so many Hungarian filmmakers, in the post-Communist era, are struggling to survive.

While it is highly unlikely that “Bank Ban” will reach a wide audience in the U. Screenplay Gabor Meszoly; based on the play by Joszef Katona.

József Katona

In Hungarian, with English subtitles. A Hungarian legend is stirring in its translation to the screen. Mature themes, some violence Atilla Kiss B Bank Ban, viceroy of Hungary Andrea Rost Melinda, his wife Eva Marton Queen Gertrud Denes Gulyas Otto, prince of Meran, her brother Kolos Kovats Exclusively at the Monica 4-Plex through Thursday, 2nd St.

Seizure Led to FloJo’s Death. His scores make his case.

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