By the Gods!

Ramon Novarro, as Ben-Hur, becomes one of the many men as slave in BEN-HUR (1925)

As great as the the 1959 version is much of the latter's success depended a lot on this silent version, which it freely copied, often nearly scene for scene.

Movie Poster Mondays

French poster for COLOSSUS AND THE AMAZON QUEEN

Good poster and artwork but does it really show that it's a comedy?

By the Gods!

Giovanni Cianfriglia in THE PIRATE OF THE 'BLACK HAWK'

Giovanni has less than a minute of screen time in the standard European pirate flick. It's one of those pirate movies which takes place almost entirely on land.  There aren't any truly memorable scenes in this production directed by the usually dependable Sergio Grieco. 

PEPLUM GIF Animation : THE MIGHTY URSUS


A scene from THE MIGHTY URSUS starring Ed Fury. Classic breaking chains bit seen in many PEPLUM films.

By the Gods!

Hercules (Maciste in original, Alan Steel) tosses a Moon man out of the way in HERCULES AGAINST THE MOON MEN

I love the tinted look of these scenes in the film. The script is a bit facile and there is some padding here and there but this is fun, colourful movie with a very bad rep.

Behind-the-Scenes

Steve Reeves greets a man while promoting HERCULES (1958) in Italy.

Hercules (1958)

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Sylva Koscina

The Invincible Gladiator

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Richard Harrison - Isabelle Corey

Sodom & Gomorrah

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Anouk Aimée

Herod the Great

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Edmund Purdom - Sylvia Lopez

Hercules, Samson & Ulysses

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Mario Novelli - Willy Colombini

Meet the Spartans

PEPLUM X Tuesdays


Travis Van Winkle - Sean Maguire - Kevin Sorbo

By the Gods!

Jeff Chandler, Louis Jourdan and Debra Paget in BIRD OF PARADISE

All three actors would have solid careers in the PEPLUM genre. Though not 100% PEPLUM, I consider South Sea adventures to fall under the PEPLUM umbrella. The stories and themes are pretty much identical to many PEPLUM films. I finally saw this film a year ago and I was disappointed by it. Way too serious and unfocused. But great locations and good looking cast help make it watchable.

Movie Poster Mondays

Turkish poster for TAUR THE MIGHTY

Colorful and accurate artwork.

By the Gods!

Demetrios (Sal Ponti) fights off Andex the Giant (Robert 'Big Buck' Maffei) in ATLANTIS THE LOST CONTINENT

One of many Hollywood's attempts in trying to make a PEPLUM film, in style and action, including using scenes from other films, like QUO VADIS for this one. It's a mish-mash of genres: sci-fi, fantasy and Antiquity. It's basically Dr Moreau story transplanted in a different time. Not a big fan of it (the main characters are point blank annoying) but I love everything to do with Atlantis so I mostly give it a pass.

Actor profile : Aldo Pini


Continuing with profiling relatively unknown supporting actors of Italian/Euro PEPLUM films. Today it's Aldo Pini. Aldo appeared in *many* films. He's one of those actors seen all the time in PEPLUM film but many don't know his name. He had a distinctive look and was easily recognizable in all his roles, short or extensive. One of his first genre film was QUO VADIS, where he's seen briefly at the Bull keeper, showing the bull to Patricia Laffan. But his most notable role was in the two Steve Reeves HERCULES films. He played Tifi, pilot of the Argo.

The list below is long and many of his appearances are not listed at IMDb. He's also in other films not shown here, like THE SWORD AND THE CROSS. I like Aldo. He's a real PEPLUM star.

QUO VADIS
Aldo with Patricia Laffan

ULYSSES
Aldo with Kirk Douglas

ATTILA
Small but vocal role in his first of many roles in a Pietro Francisci film

HERCULES (1958)

Aldo as Tifi, one of the Argonauts. Below : piloting the Argo with Hercules (Steve Reeves)



HERCULES UNCHAINED
Tifi (Pini) saying goodbye to Hercules (Reeves)

BEN-HUR
Aldo is credited as 'bad thief' in this film but unfortunately, there's no close-up on his face

CONQUEROR OF THE ORIENT
A small role as a guard in this cheapie

MORGAN THE PIRATE
Aldo reteams with Steve Reeves in this excellent film

ESTHER & THE KING
Aldo co-starred with Sergio Fantoni in ESTHER & THE KING

SWORD OF THE CONQUEROR
Another small but vocal role for Aldo

PONTIUS PILATE
Aldo with other familiar PEPLUM faces : Livio Lorenzon and Claudio Scarchilli (far right), also profiled here.

CAESAR THE CONQUEROR
Aldo plays a Roman general

DAMON & PYTHIAS
Another cameo-like appearance in this film.

HERO OF BABYLON
Aldo played a High Priest in this action-packed film

GOLIATH AND THE REBEL SLAVE
Aldo plays another High Priest

HERCULES, SAMSON & ULYSSES
Aldo is back with the Argonauts, along with Kirk Morris, in this Pietro Francisci mini-epic

BRENNUS - ENEMY OF ROME
Aldo costarring with Gordon Mitchell and Ursula Davis, who was also profiled recently here at the PEPLUM blog

FALL OF ROME
A brief scene where Aldo is killed

SEVEN SLAVES AGAINST ROME
Aldo was the comedic foil for Arnaldo Fabrizio's hijinks

SEVEN REBEL GLADIATORS
Aldo costarring with Giacomo Rossi Stuart

ERIK THE VIKING
Aldo in full makeup and beard, along with Gordon Mitchell and Erno Crisa

Previous Actor profiles:

Ursula Davis

Philippe Hersent





By the Gods!

George Ardisson and Pascale Petit, as Cleopatra, in A QUEEN FOR CAESAR

Pascale is still alive but has disappeared from the face of the earth since she retired from acting. There's another Pascale Petit online, a writer/poet, who is not the same person but is often mistaken for an older Pascale the actress. As for George, yes, he's still alive as well. For some odd reason, this film elicits a lot of hatred in some people but I enjoy it. Pascale makes the film.

Battle of the Titans : Jayne Mansfield vs Moira Orfei in THE LOVES OF HERCULES


In this corner, Jayne Mansfield, American bombshell and all around sweet person and in the other corner, Moira Orfei, Italian temptress and Circus superstar. Both starred together in THE LOVES OF HERCULES (aka Hercules vs the Hydra) and both apparently didn't get along, or at least, according to Moira in an interview made a few years ago, the Italian actress was miffed that Jayne, the American, was the star of the film and made sure the Italian crew got her specific instructions on how to light and film Jayne vs her. Jayne still looked good for most of the film but I must admit that some scenes Jayne looked sorta daft.

So who would win in a real life cat fight? Jayne or Moira?


Where's Jayne's name on the poster?

In the end, Moira would have the last laugh, at least in Italy, as the film was advertised without Jayne's name on movie posters. That wicked Moira.

Nooooooo!!!

By the Gods!

Richard Greene and Yvonne de Carlo in DESERT HAWK (1950)

One of those mostly studio-bound Arabian adventures made in the 1940s and early 1950s. Very colourful and good production, Greene wasn't suited for the role though. His proper English accent was too polished for such a film.

Movie Poster Mondays

French poster for GOLIATH AND THE VAMPIRES 

Simple poster. With all three main protagonists.