It Happened in Athens

PLOT:

In 1896 it is announced that the Olympic Games will be revived in Athens. A young shepherd, Spiridon Loues, decides to enter the 26-mile marathon. Once in Athens, he meets Christina Gratsos, a young woman from his hometown who is now the personal maid of Eleni Costa, Greece’s most glamorous actress. Though he has arrived after the qualification date, Spiridon’s athletic prowess so impresses Coach Graham of the American team that he is permitted to enter the contest. Eleni informs the press that she will marry the victor, confident it will be her lover, Lieutenant Vinardos.

What people are saying:

“In 1962 It Happened In Athens was released. Jayne Mansfield’s contract was up at Fox. A flm, at least a little different from her usual roles. Jayne fans love her in anything.” 4 stars

“Jayne has a supporting role but gets top billing and is playing against type. Jayne plays a self absorbed stage actress and is a little villainous. I think it was meant to be a vehicle for introducing Trax Colton to the movies and they needed a big star to carry the movie, so they put Jayne in. Jayne looks mesmerizing in this film. I wish Fox would put it on an official DVD, though they do show it on the Fox Movie Channel sometimes. Trax plays a Greek shepherd boy trying to enter the first Olympics. Jayne plays a glamorous stage actress who promises to marry one of the winners of one of the games. Jayne’s acting is inspired and even though she has a supporting role, she is the one you will be watching the film for. This movie has a reputation of being one of Jayne’s ‘loan out’ film roles for Fox, but in fact this was a major motion picture big budget movie filmed in 1960 and was made in Cinemascope. ” 5 stars

If the movie were made by the Walt Disney studio, it would have been great!” 1 1/2 stars

“I found it rather difficult to watch this film all the way through. The acting was uninspired, the story was weak, and overall it just dragged.There were moments that were intended to be humorous that just fell flat. The actors don’t seem interested in giving there all here for the most part. Maria Xenia makes some effort, but given the weak script there is little she could do. I do think that it could have been interesting had there been a little more focus on the Olympics aspect and less on Mansfield’s character attempting to seduce Colton’s character. The seduction falls flat on screen. And it seems the actors are just embarrassing themselves.” 3 stars

“This is a frivolous light hearted comedy about about Greek farm boy, Trax Colton, who decides to enter the first Olympics in 1896. The movie follows his struggles through to his success. It’s amusing to watch the primitive conditions athletes competed under back then, and the lack of formality. Real-life Olympic hero Bob Mathias plays the American captain. A real attraction is Jayne Mansfield, who as a beauty promises to marry the winner of the marathon. She appears in a number of skimpy, revealing costumes, trying to tempt the virtuous Colton, to humorous effect. ” 4 stars

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