Ursus Nella Valle Dei Leoni


2012 release. Digitmovies present Riz Ortolani's complete original soundtrack for the movie Ursus Nella Valle Dei Leoni (aka "Ursus In The Valley Of Lions"). Directed in 1961 by Carlo Ludovico Bragaglia and starring Ed Fury, Moira Orfei, Alberto Lupo, Giacomo Furia, María Luisa Merlo, Michele Malaspina, Mariangela Giordano, Gérard Herter, Orlando Orfei, and Elena Forte. Ursus (Fury) grows up in the middle of a bunch of lions after the evil Ajak (Lupo) has killed his father and thereby usurped the throne. One day he meets a merchant of slaves and offers him his medallion in exchange for a girl named Ania (Giordano), with which Ursus has fallen in love. The medallion gets into the hands of the cruel Ajak who recognizes it and therefore deducts that Ursus is still alive; Ajak fears that the young man may one day claim the throne he is rightfully entitled to and then decides to search and kill him. After a battle with no holds barred Ursus manages to defeat Ajak and recapture his throne which he will share with his beautiful Ania. In 1961 when Riz Ortolani was barely thirty years old and at the beginning of his long and distinguished career, he had to face the challenge to compose and conduct a symphonic OST even before he became famous throughout the world with "More" from "Mondo Cane" and one of the best musicians required for the screen in Italy and America. In 1991 Cinevox issued a CD compilation dedicated to four Ursus movies with music by Roman Vlad, Carlo Savina, Riz Ortolani, and Angelo F. Lavagnino. From Ursus In The Valley Of The Lions, only about twelve minutes were selected, for Digitmovies' CD they were able to use the mono master tapes of the original session which allowed us to use every note recorded at the time (including brass bands, harp, organ, percussion, etc.) Riz Ortolani has written a heroic theme for dominating French horns for Ursus introduced during the main titles and reprised again in the conclusive "final". Very dramatic and violent battle music gets alternated with mysterious passages of tension, a delicate love theme for Ursus and Ania, funny music, and a military march. A proper rescue and preservation of the Italian silver age and of the musical art of Riz Ortolani.