Friday, December 15, 2017

By the Gods!

Constantine (Cornel Wilde) and Emperor Maximianus (Tino Carraro) in CONSTANTINE & THE CROSS (1961)

I recently got a high definition copy of this grand PEPLUM production. The detail seen in this copy is outstanding. I rarely enjoyed watching this film because previous copies were so bad. Now that there's a good one available, I might do a Fan Dub of it (if there are no Youtube restrictions, of course). In this scene, we see Cornel standing before the famous castle set, which, if you're familiar with PEPLUM movies, is the one seen in so many other films since scenes from this film were re-used and re-used again.

PEPLUM TV DVD reviews


Here's my second t batch of reviews of recent purchases I've made and wrote about it here.

I'll be reviewing 4 DVDs. They are all from Europe. As in most titles, I already had these films in my collection. I was intrigued in buying them for different reasons, mainly for better, clearer versions of what's already available before or simply to compare 'official' DVDs with the stuff that I already have.

Just as a side note, I experienced dreadful service acquiring UOMINI FORTI and THE BLACK DUKE DVDs, from eBay and Amazon.

MACISTE ALL'INFERNO (Maciste in Hell ; 1962) - Gotico Italiano edition


I had no reason in purchasing this DVD since I have several copies of this, including the excellent French DVD released a few years ago. I even made a Fan Dub of it. The reason why I purchased it was an extra included in the package. It's called 'LE FATICHE DI MACISTE' or 'The Labour of Maciste.' I included two screenshots below. It's a brief doc (30 minutes long) with an unrecognizable Kirk Morris recollecting his time in the making this great film. Alas, there are no English subtitles included so even though I can get what he's saying, it's not 100% clear. Oh well...



I'm happy with this purchase even if the film transfer of this DVD is slightly less in quality than the spectacular French DVD. I just need English subtitles for the interview with Kirk.


I TARTARI (The Tartars ; 1961) - Cristal D Film edition


I purchase this mainly to compare with what I already have. The quality of the image is excellent and the running time is the same as the English one (sped up because of the PAL conversion).


The film stars Hollywood actors Orson Welles and Victor Mature. It also stars a host of familiar PEPLUM actors, such as Liana Orfei, Arnoldo Foà, Luciano Marin and Bella Cortez. The sets are amazing in it and the highlight of this production is the excellent dance number, which starts off with male dancers re-enacting battle movements (above) and continues with the main dancer dancing it up with a female partner. Much higher quality than the standard dance sequences seen in most PEPLUM movies.

Now had this DVD included the English track it would have rated much higher but as it is, it's great but not really necessary for my collection. There's another 'official' DVD of this (an older release) and I decided on this newer release.


UOMINI FORTI (Iron Men) - Documentary - Istituto Luce


This documentary is supposed to be a documentary on the PEPLUM genre, called IRON MEN. This is really not a documentary but mainly a collection of 'behind-the-scenes' clips from a number of different productions, like THE PHARAOHS' WOMAN and CLEOPATRA'S DAUGHTER, just to name a few (which have no 'Iron Men' in them). It also includes clips of a buff Steve Reeves in swim trunks doing exercises with a fully dressed Sylva Koscina. I uploaded clips of this at my DAILYMOTION channel. See below.



This DVD production also includes interviews with various PEPLUM stars like the late Mimmo Palmara. And there's a so-called specialist on the PEPLUM genre who does most of the talking and narration. Personally, I find this totally useless. I've already seen all of the clips included (you can find them at LUCE's official website) and to make things worse, the doc is full of mistakes, some so funny that I laughed out loud. The 'specialist' is anything but knowledgeable of the PEPLUM genre. It's sorta baffling as to why make a documentary on the PEPLUM genre and have it filed with so many mistakes and goofs. Oh well...


CESARE BORGIA (The Black Duke ; 1963 ) - VZ-Handelsgesellschaft mbH edition

For the last review, I saved the best for last. Though not a great earth shattering movie by any means, this DVD of THE BLACK DUKE is very good. It includes an albeit weak English track (too processed), and the image quality is excellent, though not stunning. It stars Cameron Mitchell, who's in excellent dramatic form, and the Italian cast that's a hoot for a PEPLUM fanatic like me. The movie itself is fun to watch even though it has a very old fashioned feel and quality to it. The director, Pino Mercanti, began making films back in the 1930s and he clearly never left that era. The big sword fight at the climax is sometimes sped-up, like they did during that decade. Regardless, this was a fun film to discover and I didn't have to make a Fan Dub of it. Yeah! I wonder if there's an English version, with English opening credits anywhere though. Hmm...



Thursday, December 14, 2017

By the Gods!

Guy Madison discovers that one of the enemy combatants is a woman, Rossana Podestà, in SLAVE OF ROME (1961)

A surprisingly good PEPLUM film, which centres around the characters and their personal conflicts. It's one of those films shot almost entirely in (cold) exterior settings, GIANTS OF ROME or DUEL OF THE TITANS. There are many memorable moments in it, including one in a narrow valley. I even uploaded one scene at my PEPLUM TV channel but it's missing a *big* stand-out scene to make it, well, stand-out from the rest of the crowded pack of PEPLUM films. When I watch it, I feel bad for the actors who were probably freezing throughout the shoot.

Film of the week : MACISTE - STRONGEST MAN IN THE WORLD


MACISTE - STRONGEST MAN IN THE WORLD starring Mark Forest, Moira Orfei, Paul Wynter, Gianni Garko and Raeffela Carrà. Also known as MACISTE VS THE MOLE MEN (or The Mole Men Against the Son of Hercules).

This is one of the first Fan Dubs I've made. The audio sometimes switches from English to Italian.

Exclusive Fan Dub made for PEPLUM TV.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal


Preview of the week : LAST DAYS OF POMPEII


Preview from LAST DAYS OF POMPEII starring Steve Reeves and Christine Kaufmann. Coming very soon to PEPLUM TV.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

PEPLUM TV compilation : Lifting statues!


Quick Clip compilation of heroes lifting statues!

Titles :

MACISTE IN THE VALLEY OF THUNDERING ECHOES with Kirk Morris

HERCULES UNCHAINED with Steve Reeves

GOLIATH AND THE DRAGON with Mark Forest

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

By the Gods!

Kirk Morris, as Maciste, pushes a boulder in TRIUMPH OF MACISTE (1961)

This is a very familiar cliché of the PEPLUM genre. I like making compilations of clichés for my PEPLUM TV channel but there's a growing bunch of new subscribers (newbies) who hate them. They don't get what I'm trying to do with these. I want to make a compilation of this one, of heroes pushing or lifting up rocks or boulders, but the negativity from the many newbies sorta makes me start doubting the use of doing these. It's really annoying.

Behind-the-Scenes

Lana Turner and Edmund Purdom look over something during a break of filming THE PRODIGAL (1955)

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

By the Gods!

Wandisa Guida and Burt Nelson in REVENGE OF THE CONQUERED (1961)

The original Italian title, DRAKUT IL VINDICATOR, translates as DRAKUT THE AVENGER in English. I made a Fan Dub of this and it's one of the best I ever did. I'm wondering if I should upload it to my main PEPLUM TV channel or create a new channel just with films set in Medieval times, or Swashbucklers? I have TONS of those and wonder if it would be better just to create a channel dedicated just for those movies. Wandisa, a good actress, never looked better in this film, and Burt, though not much of an actor, was well suited for these kind of roles.

Sphinx unearthed in California!

In 1956, Charlton Heston made Hollywood history by playing Moses in Cecil B. DeMille's "The Ten Commandments." DeMille's first take on the biblical tale happened 33 years earlier when he released a silent version of the story of the Hebrew exodus from Egypt.

Both films were ambitious in their scope, but while the 1956 version was groundbreaking in its use of special effects, the silent film required thousands of actors, crew, and animals along with an immense construction project.

DeMille commissioned designer Paul Iribe, known as the father of art deco, to build a lavish set 12 stories high and 800 feet wide in the Guadalupe-Nipomo Sand Dunes on the California coast.

After filming wrapped the set was too expensive to move and too valuable to leave for a rival filmmaker to use, so DeMille ordered it be buried.

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS (1923)

"There was no such thing as over the top for Cecil B. DeMille," said author Scott Eyman, who wrote the DeMille biography, "Empire of Dreams."

"That generation of filmmakers believed in the physicality of movies. If they were going to do the Civil War, they did the Civil War. They got a couple hundred people or a couple thousand people and did the Civil War. So, if DeMille is going to recreate ancient Egypt he builds it on the same scale as ancient Egypt was built," Eyman said.

This week, archaeologists unearthed part of one of the 21 sphinxes DeMille left behind. They discovered a 300-pound head, still intact after nearly a century in the sand.

Sphinx head from "Ten Commandments" movie set found buried in California sand

AFRODITE - DEA DELL'AMORE (Aphrodite - Goddess of Love) - Preview


Preview of AFRODITE - DEA DELL'AMORE (1958) starring Irène Tunc, Isabelle Corey, Anthony Steffen, Ivo Garrani and Giulio Donnini. Such a good looking film!

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV WORLD channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

THE MONGOLS - Trailer


Trailer for THE MONGOLS (1961) starring Jack Palance and Anita Edberg.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV RETRO channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Monday, December 11, 2017

By the Gods!

Belinda Lee as Messalina in MESSALINA (1960)

Directed by Vittorio Cottafavi, this one interested movie. Difficult to categorize. You'd think it would be  standard biographical representation of the life of the infamous Messalina, and the most of it is, but since this is a real PEPLUM version of the life of the Empress, there's more stuff in it you'd never see in a straight forward Hollywood type of film. I like it but there's no doubt it's not the usual stuff. Belinda is great in the title role. She appears wicked and yet approachable, which is a hard thing to do.

Movie Poster Mondays

Original Italian poster of SULEIMAN THE CONQUEROR (1961)

Colourful, action packed artwork. I'm surprised that Edmund Purdom wasn't featured more prominently.

CONQUEROR OF THE ORIENT - Gianna Maria Canale


Full movie starring Rik battaglia, Irene Tunc and Gianna Maria Canale, and a host of other actors. I uploaded this version at my previous Youtube channel. I'm planning a Fan Dub of this in the near future and will upload it to the main channel so for now enjoy this version at PEPLUM TV RETRO.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV RETRO channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

SAMSON (Fury of Hercules) - Trailer


German trailer for SAMSON, which is actually FURY OF HERCULES, starring Brad Harris. They renamed it SAMSON, and SAMSON, which also stars Brad Harris, was renamed FURY OF HERCULES. This is one of the most baffling things with this German release.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV WORLD channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Thursday, December 7, 2017

By the Gods!

Fernando Sancho and Brad Harris (as Goliath) talk about strategies in GOLIATH AGAINST THE GIANTS (1961)

I listed Sancho's character as one of the annoying sidekicks (list here). He's actually not an annoying sidekick because he's annoying but because his character plays dumb. He's basically there to ask constant questions to Goliath, in order for Goliath to say some expository dialogue. He gets annoying pretty fast, and sorta looks dumb in the process. Aside from that (and the general plotless story) this is a fun, colourful film. The costume Brad wears in this scene is one of my favourite in a PEPLUM films. I'll make a list of my favourite costumes, male and female, for the blog one of these days  (I've been saying this for a long time now). Brad passed away recently.

PEPLUM TV clip of the week : HERCULES AGAINST THE BARBARIANS


Snake scene from HERCULES AGAINST THE BARBARIANS starring Mark Forest and Howard Ross (Renato Rossini). Great scene! From a Fan Dub I'm working on.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Dance clip of the week : SULEIMAN THE CONQUEROR


Preview of SULEIMAN THE CONQUEROR starring Edmund Purdom. This is basically a dance sequence but Youtube will restrict it if I name it so. Yes, that's how crazy Youtube is these days.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

PEPLUM TV compilation : In Bed with Steve Reeves


Compilation of clips with Steve Reeves in bed. I re-uploaded this. There's another scene from HERCULES UNCHAINED which I didn't include.

Titles :

LAST DAYS OF POMPEII (1959)
WHITE WARRIOR
SON OF SPARTACUS

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

By the Gods!

Ken Clark, as Kubilai, in HERCULES AGAINST THE BARBARIANS (1964)

This is one of two Maciste films directed by Domenico Paolella and starring the tall Ken Clark, along with Mark Forest in the lead role of Maciste, renamed Hercules for the US market. The other is HERCULES AGAINST THE MONGOLS (1963), which I've made a Fan Dub of and uploaded to PEPLUM TV. I really like both films and in a odd way, they are sorta PEPLUM masterpieces. Both films, though with pretty much the same cast and crew, have nothing to do with each other. They have stand-alone stories. They both use scenes from the Anita Edberg / Jack balance film, THE MONGOLS (1961). I personally prefer HERCULES AGAINST THE MONGOLS but this movie also has some great scenes in it and is very entertaining. Paolella directed other genre films but I believe these two titles are his enduring contribution to the PEPLUM genre. I'm currently working on a Fan Dub of this, with a gorgeous print! Side note : I believe the actor in foreground is Bruno Stefanelli but it's hard to say, with the heavy makeup and all. No actor is credited for the role. 

Behind-the-Scenes

Dan Vadis skateboarding with an unidentified lady in Rome

PEPLUM TV RETRO : HERCULES & THE CAPTIVE WOMEN - Prison bars


Quick clip from HERCULES & THE CAPTIVE WOMEN - starring Reg Park, bending prison bars!

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV RETRO channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

PEPLUM TV WORLD : IL COLOSSO DI ROMA (Hero of Rome) - Trailer


Original Italian trailer for HERO OF ROME (aka Colossus of Rome) starring Gordon Scott and Gabriele Antonini. Good trailer.

Make sure to give the video a thumbs up and subscribe to PEPLUM TV WORLD channel.

A donation to PEPLUM TV with Paypal is always appreciated : PEPLUM TV Paypal

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

By the Gods!

A scene from DAMON & PYTHIAS (1914)

I recently got hold of this film, having never seen it before. Interesting. Frank Lloyd as Dionysius (I think). The film starts by showing the cast of actors, in modern days clothes, one by one, which is cool. Even so, it's difficult to figure out who plays who in this, with the costumes, makeup and angles pretty much blurring all resemblance from their modern day counterparts. The production is excellent but modest. Totally different than the Guy Williams version from 1962.