The Dragon Ring
|Desideria e l'Anello del Drago|
|Directed by||Lamberto Bava|
|Produced by||Lamberto Bava
|Written by||Gianni Romoli|
|Music by||Amedeo Minghi|
|Editing by||Piero Bozza|
|Running time||186 min|
Desideria e l'Anello del Drago (also known as Desideria and The Dragon Ring) is an Italian fantasy mini-series directed by Lamberto Bava and starring Anna Falchi. The story is similar in style and direction as Lamberto Bava's more successful Fantaghirò series.
Desideria is the eldest daughter of the Dragon King and Queen, rulers of a powerful conquering kingdom. Selvaggia is the magical adopted daughter of the Dragon King and Queen, and although she is constantly playing tricks to get her elder sister in trouble, she is frequently praised as being the smarter and better daughter.
As the eldest birth daughter of the Dragon King, Desideria is due to inherit the Dragon Ring, the highest symbol of power in the kingdom, but she can only do so once she has chosen a husband. Unfortunately, the prince that finally catches her attention is Prince Victor, a rebel prince who has fought against her father and is to be sentenced to death for his treachery.
Desideria helps Victor escape from the castle prisons, but her father catches her in the act and she is punished. The Dragon King decides to let all the princes in his conquered kingdoms fight in a tournament for her hand in marriage, but when Desideria sees that all the princes are selfish, cruel men, she runs away. When the Dragon King discovers that she has fled, he declares that Desideria has forfeited her right to the throne and Selvaggia will become the new prize. But unknown to him, the jealous Selvaggia wants to beat her elder sister completely.
Desideria eventually ends up in the desert, where she is saved from the Witches of the Sand by none other than Prince Victor himself. She learns from him and other rebels in his camp that her beloved father is actually a cruel and vicious ruler. Just as she agrees to fight at Victor's side, Selvaggia casts a spell from the castle, causing Victor to fall in love with her and rush to join the tournament to win Selvaggia's hand.
|Franco Nero||Dragon King|
|Sophie von Kessel||Princess Selvaggia ("Wild" in English-dubbed version)|
|Joel Beeson||Prince Victor|
|Ute Christensen||Dragon Queen|
|Karel Roden||Prince Lisandro|
|Stefania Sandrelli||The Fairy of Crystal Sword Lake|
|Marek Vasut||King Karl|
|Oldrich Bartik||Old Man|
|Nikol Štíbrová||Princess Desideria at age 5|
|Zuzana Rybárová||Princess Desideria at age 10|
|Katarina Litomericka||Princess Selvaggia at age 8|
|Jan Kolinsky||Prince Victor at age 6|
|Vladimir "Furdo" Furdik||Prince Sigismondo|
|Stanislav Satko||Prince Merlik|
|Lubomir Misak||Prince Parsel|
Similarity to the Fantaghirò movies
The film has a few similarities with Lamberto Bava's more successful Fantaghirò movies, besides filming style and special effects. In this film Victor falls in love with Desideria without ever seeing her face, and he can only recognise her by her voice. In Fantaghirò, Prince Romualdo falls in love with Fantaghirò without properly seeing her face, and he can only recognise her by her eyes. Another similarity is that the wicked Selvaggia casts a spell to make Victor fall in love with her, so to hurt Desideria. In Fantaghirò the wicked Black Witch casts a spell to make Romualdo fall in love with her, so to hurt Fantaghirò. One more similarity is that both Desideria and Fantaghirò dress up as men so that they can fight in a tournament without anyone knowing that they are women.