Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Photo(s) of the Day

 Steve Reeves, Sylva Koscina and Gabriele Antonini ride a wagon in HERCULES UNCHAINED

Now this might seem unspectacular to most but if you know Pietro Francisci films like I do (he's one of my favourite PEP directors), you know that these moments are almost a fetish for the Italian director. He LOVED these scenes. Every film of his have one or two of these moments when there's a long acting bit that takes place on a moving wagon, chariot or horseback. More often than not, the scenes were shot in a studio and they tried to give the illusion of movement with shadows going over the actors and trees flashing by in the background on some rail set-up. Very quaint and very Francisci. There are scenes like this in QUEEN OF SHEBA, multiples scenes in SAPPHO ~ VENUS OF LESBOS, one very long moment like this in SIEGE OF SYRACUSE; in HERCULES, SAMSON and ULYSSES Kirk Morris is on horseback and talks to Liana Orfei who's lying sideways in a wooden bandwagon next to his horse, etc.  You rarely see extended moments like these in any other Sword & Sandal films made by other directors.

I included both photos because I didn't know which one to use for Photo of the Day.

1 comment:

planetronix said...

I saw this as a schoolkid in Dublin in the early sixties and was amazed at the whole spectacle of it. I had never seen anything like Steve Reeves either and thereafter I had to see all of his films.

Other than this, my favorite was "Gli Ultimi Giorni Di Pompei" with his friend Mimmo Palmara and the luscious ladies Christine Kaufman as Ione and Anne-Marie Baumann as the "divine Julia". Not forgetting Fernando Rey's performance as the devious high priest, Arbaces. Before VHS or anything like that, to see this movie over again I followed it to every cinema in Dublin during its run.

I had a nice surprise years later, in 1975, when I caught a showing of it in Karlsruhe, Germany. no problem with the dialogue since I knew a good deal of German then. Also saw a showing of "Kampf des Titanes" -Clash of the Titans- with Harry Hamlin- in the Capitol, Leipzig(GDR-East Germany) in 1985.

Great blog; keep it going.