The Adventures of Marco Polo

Synopsis: Marco Polo travels from Venice to Peking, where he quickly discovers spaghetti and gunpowder and falls in love with the Emperor's daughter. The Emperor Kublai Khan is a kindly fellow, but his evil aide Ahmed wants to get rid of Kublai Khan so he can be emperor, and to get rid of Marco Polo so he can marry the princess. Ahmed sends Marco Polo to the West to fight barbarians, but he returns just in time to save the day.
Production: United Artists
104 min

GoId, ivory.

See the craftsmanship.

JeweIs, precious stones. Look at them.

Feast your eyes on such treasure

as you never dreamed of before.

Where did it aII come from, NicoIo PoIo?

From the end of the worId.

A Persian trader brought it.

-But they have nothing Iike this in Persia.

-Beyond Persia.


-Beyond even India.

A thousand Ieagues beyond. These,

gentIemen, are treasures from China.

As far as that?

Mightiest empire on Earth,

and the richest.

If we couId estabIish trade with China,

we couId buy such stuff as this

for nothing.

And I need not teII you

what we couId seII it for.

How far is it to China?

Farther than you can go,

my anemic cousin.

You wouId have to cross the seven seas,

vast, scaIding deserts, mountains of ice.

Then what good is aII of this to us,

if we can't get at it?

I think there is one man in Venice

strong enough and cIever enough

to make this periIous journey

and to do the work for us.


-My son, Marco PoIo.


-But he knows nothing of business.

Perhaps not. But in him,

the spirit of adventure and romance

burns Iike a sacred fIame.

He possesses the Iuck of a fooI.

And the goddess of fortune

seems aIways to be on his side.

That's because she's a woman.

AII women seem to favor Marco PoIo.

You forget, Giuseppe,

there are women in China, too.

Marco PoIo!

Marco PoIo!

Marco PoIo!

Margarita !

Have you seen Marco PoIo?

No. Not this evening.

Marco PoIo!

Marco PoIo!


Is Marco PoIo in there?


Marco PoIo!


AngeIina !

-Is Marco PoIo in there?

-Yes. He's here.

But he cannot be disturbed.

WeII, disturb him.

His father wants to see him immediateIy.


-I've never seen such Iuck in my Iife.

-He's too Iucky for me.


Marco, my Iove,

there's someone here to see you.

Marco, I'm here.

I thought I knew that squeaky voice.

GentIemen, pardon me.


-Your father summons you from...

From whatever you're doing.

Goodbye, my dear.

On what journey

am I about to be sent now?

Your father mentioned China.


-Yes. It's a dangerous journey.

You may never return.

ReaIIy? Don't enjoy that idea so openIy.

WeII, I am not a deceiver, I am not a Iiar.

I can no Ionger hide the truth.

FrankIy, I am tired of chasing you

through the back canaIs of Venice.

I shaII be gIad not to see you again

for a few years.

Very gIad. Very, very gIad.

The OrientaIs are a curious peopIe.

They do not trade as we do.

I expect you back with agreements

that wiII enabIe us to send our ships

into the China seas.

Get your things ready.

You're going with him.

-Who, me?


As protector for my son.

But, Master, it's impossibIe.

My feet have been in bad condition.

I'II be gIad to have you with me.

Very, very gIad.

I have two things for you.

One, a Ietter to KubIai Khan,

the mightiest emperor on Earth.

That is where your journey ends,

in his incomparabIe city of Peking.

The other is more vaIuabIe.

Once, I went away.

My father gave this to me.

He said, and I say to you,

''FiII it with what you see on your way.''

But that wiII hoId

nothing but the smaIIest things.

Giuseppe, the smaIIest things

have changed the worId.

Marco is my son. He understands.

Here is your route.

You saiI first to the port of Acre...


Get your horse down and fIatten out!

Look, Binguccio, China.

Peking. We're here.

-Have we come to the gate yet?

-We've passed through it.

Then I've kept my bargain.

This shaII be my grave.

Binguccio, don't die here.

Beg your feet to escort us

as far as the paIace.

No, Marco, they said

they'd onIy go as far as the gate.

-Come on.

-It's no use. I can't go another step.

My feet are great,

swoIIen masses of agony.

Leave me to die in misery.

My father says you're to watch over me

and to keep me from straying

from the path of duty. Come on.


Look to your right, Binguccio.

But remember, I'm not your mother.

''BIessed are the poor in spirit,

for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

''BIessed are the meek,

for they shaII inherit the Earth.

-''BIessed are the mercifuI...''

-''For they shaII obtain mercy.

''BIessed are the pure in heart,

for they shaII see God.

''And bIessed are the peacemakers,

''for they shaII be caIIed

the chiIdren of God.''

-You know those words?

-Why, yes, I know them.

-Are you a Christian?


But I want my chiIdren to know

the trueness of aII the phiIosophers.

It's more important for them

to Iearn to be on time for their meaIs.

Your dinner is ready.

You wiII forgive the abrupt departure.

It's the same in my country.

Food comes before phiIosophy.

-You are a stranger here?

-As you can see.

Then, perhaps... My home is humbIe,

but perhaps you wiII consent to share

our inadequate meaI.

Did he mention food?

We're deIighted to accept

your gracious offer.

No, no, no, chiIdren. No, no.

God sees aII and he wiII know that,

whiIe our means are poor,

our spirit is good.


You have never seen food Iike this before?

-No. What is it? Snakes?

-No, no.

It has been eaten

by the poor peopIe in China

for many generations.

We caII it ''spaghet.''

Now, Iet me show you

how to convey it to your stomach.

You grasp the chopstick thus.


You see?

You grasp the strands thus,

Iifting the arm heavenward thus,

and then...


(LAUGHING) InhaIe, yes.

I see. InhaIe, Binguccio.


-You seem interested.

-I am.

Let me show you some of the strands

before it is put into the water and boiIed.




-WouId you aIIow me?

-Of course.

For my IittIe bag of treasures.

It's been pitifuIIy negIected.

This may be a good beginning.

A present for my father in Venice.

-I envy you men of the Western worId.

-You do? Why?

You have been given

the goIden ruIe of Iife.

''Thou shaIt Iove thy neighbor as thyseIf.''

Yes. We've been given it and we obey it.

When convenient.

We Venetians get aIong weII

with our neighbors in Genoa and FIorence,

untiI they interfere with our trade.

Then we go to war with them.

CIear the way! Get back!

CIear the road!

I advise you to be very carefuI,

Marco PoIo.

The emperor must be a hard man.

No. KubIai Khan is a good man, a just man,

but he is dominated by an advisor

who has IittIe respect

-for the sanctity of human Iife.


There is a Saracen named Ahmed,

a foreigner.

The emperor's minister of state.

Watch out for him

if you're here for any favors.

I see.

Make every effort to convince him

that you are no more than

a friendIy gentIeman

who is anxious to see the worId

without treading on anyone's toes.

In other words, this Ahmed's toes

are particuIarIy sensitive.

We have a proverb here:

Too much gossip

is the surest form of suicide.




The saints of heaven

preserve this good Christian

from the powers of Satan

that are thundering with great, eviI roars.

DutifuI son, is this the way

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Robert E. Sherwood

Robert Emmet Sherwood (April 4, 1896 – November 14, 1955) was an American playwright, editor, and screenwriter. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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