Monday, October 31, 2022


Gordon Scott as Mucius in COLOSSUS OF ROME (1964; aka Hero of Rome)

One of Gordon's most solid PEPLUM movie. This was one of three movies he made with director Giorgio Ferroni. They're all very good. The story was inspired by actual historical events and people even though they made Mucius more Hercules-like than he most likely was in reality. There are some nice prints of this out there, like the recent German DVD, but still no HD version available yet. This scene inspired a poster that's quite brutal, which I have in my collection.

PEPLUM Movie Poster

German poster of GOLIATH AGAINST THE GIANTS (1961) 

The German release renamed Goliath as Hercules. The title translates as THE WANDERINGS OF HERCULES. Good poster. 

Monday, October 24, 2022


I take a break roughly every two months so this is that time again. Last full break was back at  the end of August. 

So stay tuned!

I'll leave you now with King Leonidas (Richard Egan) from THE 300 SPARTANS (1962), saying "From this wall, we do not retreat!"

Friday, October 21, 2022

Image of the week!

A dormant Hercules (Steve Reeves) and a resting Ulysses (Gabriele Antonini) are captured and on their way to Omphale's kingdom in HERCULES UNCHAINED (1959) 

At the movies...

 THE EGYPTIAN (1954) playing at the FOX theatre in Detroit.

Thursday, October 20, 2022


 Gianna Maria Canale and Rik Battaglia in THE MIGHTY CRUSADERS (1958)

Released the same year as HERCULES (1958), this movie was almost as influential as HERCULES in terms of shaping the future of the PEPLUM genre. Though nowhere near as popular as the Steve Reeves movie, it still established a look and a set of actors which would work non-stop for several years, until the genre itself died in the mid-1960s. The two characters become lovers, and along with the pairing of Sylva Koscina and Francisco Rabal, the movie was filled with a lot of romantic stuff for a Crusaders movie. Perfect for the Fotonovelas of the time. There is one odd thing about this movie: having watched this movie many times, I noticed that main actors, ie Rabal, Canale and Koscina, all had spectacular close-ups (more than once) but not Rik Battaglia. Did the director not like him?


Sylva Koscina

Gianna Maria Canale

Francisco Rabal

Where's Rik's close-up?


Arnold and buddy Franco Columbu, in costume, pose for a photo on the set of CONAN THE BARBARIAN (1982)

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Clip of the week: ATLAS AGAINST THE CZAR (1964)

Atlas (Kirk Morris) tries to stop a deadly contraption! With Massimo Serato as the evil Czar.

Tuesday, October 18, 2022


The 'Giant Bat' from GOLIATH AND THE DRAGON (1960)

This movie is filled with special effects so choosing just one of the plethora of effects is difficult. One of my favourite is the Giant Bat seen while Goliath is on the quest for the Blood Diamond (below). When Goliath retrieves it, the creature appears and is on the attack. Many think the full creature is cheesy but I like it. Personally, the main problem is not the Giant Bat but the set which looks really fake, including shadows on the obvious backdrop (last image). The Giant Bat itself is cool. What's your favourite effects from this colourful PEPLUM?

Mosaic depicting the Trojan War is found in Syria

I love stories like this. It's amazing that the stuff they built back then could last thousands of years. 

"A 1,300-square-foot mosaic uncovered in Syria depicting scenes of the Trojan War, a legendary conflict that took place between the ancient Greeks and the people of Troy more than 2,000 years ago, is the 'rarest' ever to be found due to how remarkably intact it is."


Monday, October 17, 2022


Alan Steel and Maria Grazia Spina in SAMSON AND THE SLAVE QUEEN (1963; Zorro contro Maciste)

I uploaded a Fan Dub of this movie to my PEPLUM TV Youtube channel. One of the most difficult Fan Dubs I ever made. The state of the English audio was bad, near poor and there were many missing scenes so I had to add subtitles during those missing moments of the English dub. A fun movie directed by Umberto Lenzi. This scene takes place in a set that was used and re-used in many PEPLUM movies.
 No HD version available yet, Italian, English or any language.

PEPLUM Movie Posters

Spanish poster of THE SON OF SPARTACUS (1962; aka The Slave)

Simple poster showing Steve Reeves right and centre.

Friday, October 14, 2022

Image of the week!

 Roccia (Dan Vadis) gets the point in SPARTACUS AND THE TEN GLADIATORS (1964)


British lobby cards set of SINBAD AND THE EYE OF THE TIGER (1977) starring Patrick Wayne, Jane Seymour and others. Good set with most of the highlights of the movie. It's still missing a lot including the Minoton. The cast is mostly well represented except for the villainess Zenobia. 

Thursday, October 13, 2022


Angela Lansbury as Semadar in SAMSON AND DELILAH (1949)

Angela died on October 11 at the age of 96. Though she starred in countless of movies and Broadway shows, Angela starred in few PEPLUM movies. Her only big PEPLUM role is in SAMSON AND DELILAH co-starring Victor Mature and Henry Wilcoxon (below). She was excellent in it. She also starred in THE COURT JESTER (1955) with Danny Kaye and had a bit part in THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD (1965). R.I.P.!


Director Pietro Francisci and Kerwin Mathews (back left, in costume) on the set of SAPPHO - THE VENUS OF LESBOS (1960; aka The Warrior Empress)

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

HD Alert!

 Rory Calhoun and Yoko Tani in MARCO POLO (1962)

Kino Lorber will release a Blu-ray of MARCO POLO early next year. The news is so new that no images of the Blu-ray cover or from the print itself are available yet. The screenshot above was taken from a DVD copy from my collection. That print is in Italian but I also have one in English from a VHS source in poor quality. Unlike the recent SAMSON AND THE 7 MIRACLES OF THE WORLD Kino Lorber release, which had the original Italian print and a Fan Dub version of the US print, the BD for MARCO POLO will only include one print, the English one. According to a statement at their Facebook account, the opening credits will be in English and the director credited is Hugo Fregonese. The runtime is at 104 minutes which is the original runtime at 24 frames per second. So it's an original print of the official English release, presumably not a Fan Dub. Can't wait to see it.

Vintage Article

Danish magazine with an article on HERCULES (1958) published in the summer of 1959. The title 'Masser Af Muskler' translates as 'Lots of muscles.'

Monday, October 10, 2022


Chelo Alonso, Paul Wynter and Gordon Mitchell in ATLAS IN THE LAND OF THE CYCLOPS (1961)

This is a great example of an Italian PEPLUM. I like it a lot and it hits *all* the aspects which make these movies so fun to watch. Paul Wynter only made two movies, with MACISTE - THE STRONGEST MAN IN THE WORLD (aka Maciste vs Mole Men) being the other. He could have been a star but he was only 5'8" and people like their heroes on the tall side. Chelo was as tall as Paul. But he had excellent presence and went toe to toe with Mitchell in a pretty decent fight. Chelo's character is difficult to gauge. Is she truly evil or redeemable? They try to make her sympathetic, and she is, but her character's actions are often the trigger for so much hardship and cruelty. Gordon Mitchell's name is misspelled during the opening credits. 

PEPLUM Movie Poster

Belgian poster of HERO OF BABYLON (1963) 

Very colourful artwork. The image of Gordon Scott is from the Italian poster.

Friday, October 7, 2022

Image of the week!

Hercules (Reg Park) and his companion Theseus (George Ardisson) negotiate a way to cross the lake of lava in HERCULES IN THE HAUNTED WORLD (1961)

VHS Covers

Above: Greek (?) VHS cover of 1001 NIGHTS (1968) starring Luciana Paluzzi and Jeff Cooper. Below: US VHS cover released in 1989. Have you seen this movie?

Thursday, October 6, 2022


Ursus (Ed Fury) is seduced by Magali (Cristina Gaioni) while his friend Doreide (María Luisa Merlo) sleeps in THE MIGHTY URSUS (1961)

I didn't want to post this photo here at the blog even though I've uploaded it at different accounts (Facebook, Twitter...). This photo is interesting in that this scene is *not* in the movie. It's something that happens quite frequently: lobby cards or official photos from a movie includes scenes that were cut from the final version. There are a lot of them and I find it fascinating and want to write about it, hence the reason why I didn't want to upload this one now. But I thought what better way to create interest in this subject that posting about it. I know where this scene would be if it had remain in the movie. I wonder why it was cut and I wonder if the scene still exists or it has been totally destroyed. Anyway, we have this photo as proof.


Tyrone Power visits his wife Linda Christian on the set of SLAVES OF BABYLON (1953), also starring Richard Conte.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Tuesday, October 4, 2022


Scenes from ATTILA (1954)

This Pietro Francisci movie has many excellent matte paintings which is sort of a rarity in Italian PEPLUM movies. They might have one or two but not 6 or 7 like this production. Here are two shots. Stephen B. Grimes and Ivor Beddoes are credited as the artists.



Star Ciné Roman was a French 'fotonovela' with different movies in each issue. Many of them were PEPLUM titles. Here's a 6 of them. Many of these fotonovelas were published when the movie was released but for others, including the two first, they were published years after the two movies were released. Some of the titles on the cover are totally different than the actual titles of the movies.

SAMSON AND DELILAH starring Victor Mature and Hedy Lamarr

HELEN OF TROY starring Rossana Podesta

THE PHARAOHS' WOMAN starring Linda Cristal and Pierre Brice

THE LAND OF THE PHARAOHS starring Jack Hawkins and Joan Collins

THE GIANTS OF THESSALY starring Ziva Rodann, Alberto Farnese, Luciano Marin and Cathia Caro

THE BACCHANTES starring Taina Elg, Raf Mattioli and Alessandra Panaro

Monday, October 3, 2022


Obro (Gordon Mitchell) and Princess Mecede (Bella Cortez) are in a tight position in THE GIANT OF METROPOLIS (1961)

Patiently waiting for the HD copy of this to surface. Not that it didn't have nice prints on DVDs before. It has and I made a Fan Dub of it but this PEPLUM sci-fi is a visual feast and a HD or Blu-ray treatment would be amazing to watch. The runtime for this movie is a bit confusing though. According to IMDb, it seems the original runtime is 98 minutes but none of the copies I have is close to it. The runtime for the US version is 89 minutes (NTSC) and the Italian, French or German are 86 minutes (PAL). All copies are pretty much intact, including the US one. So the 98 minutes must be an error. 

PEPLUM Movie Poster

British quad of THE FURY OF HERCULES (1962)

Many Italian PEPLUM movies were released theatrically in the UK and this is one example. I like it.