film review: HERCULES IN THE VALLEY OF WOE [Maciste contro Ercole nella valle dei guai] (1961)

I am glad you have traveled with me this far. I understand that sticking with certain film series can be trying especially when things get really bad. The 40’s monster rally series was also poorly done, but not like this. The 60’s Italian sword and sandal craze started out decent enough, but quickly plummeted into abysmal quality. If previous entries can be surrendered to cheesy escapism, the 7th entry in the Hercules series is one of the most disposable and needless developments the genre has ever seen. I may be…

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HERCULES (Le fatiche di Ercole – 1958)


It is difficult to argue the grand scope of this 1958 film. First, it was a large production, drawing on various myths and unrelated Greek Mythology, featuring the oiled physique of bodybuilder Steve Reeves. Secondly, Hercules was the refinement, if not the genesis of the Peplum film genre, which saw an absurd amount of Italian sword and sandal films produced between the 50’s and 60’s. Seriously. Looking at the list of costumed biblical, Greek, Roman, Viking, and swashbuckler drama that was produced before the rise of Spaghetti western is near…

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film review: HERCULES

Though people may not know it yet, 2014 is the year of sword and sandal. Unlike its fraternal twin, sword and sorcery, sword and sandal trades magic for history as its battles are set in the lush landscapes of ancient Greece, Babylon, Rome, and Egypt. At this point in the year, we have already seen 300: Rise of an Empire, Pompeii, and the first Hercules adaptation. On the horizon, audiences can look forward to the Ridley Scott retelling of Moses, aptly named Exodus: Gods and Kings. At this very moment…

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the legend of hercules

Hercules is the now popular name for a myriad of difference legends and myths that have sort of been amalgamated into one idea. Since I always like to draw parallels between world mythology and comic books, Hercules could be thought of as Superman, where different writers and creators add to the growing narrative and through group storytelling, we are left with one sort of hazy idea. The idea Hercules portrays is a hero finding strength in the power of the gods and becoming a champion to the mortal world, whose…

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