Thursday, November 30, 2023


Spectacular location and set from ULYSSES AGAINST HERCULES (1962) 

The location is the Canary Islands. It's one of the best locations in a PEPLUM movie. And they use to great advantage. This shot is a good example. I wonder if they built the staircase or it was already there. Either way, it's beautiful. Mike Lane (Hercules) and Raffaella Carra are running across it. One of my favourite PEPLUM movies.


Fredric March, in costume, looking at a big set being built for the movie he's working on, SIGN OF THE CROSS (1932)

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Clip of the week: SIGN OF THE GLADIATOR (1959)

Marcus Valerius (Georges Marchal) romances Queen Zenobia (Anita Ekberg)


Tuesday, November 28, 2023


Noah (John Huston) working on the Ark in THE BIBLE: IN THE BEGINNING...(1966)

Amazing shot there. They built a full size replica of the Ark and this shot is a combo of the set and matte painting. The effects were outsourced to a special effects studio.

A model was used for the flood scenes. The effects in this movie still look great by today's standards.

QUO VADIS? film event in Rome

In the summer of 2022, there was a film event right next to the Colosseum in Rome which showed PEPLUM movies for the general public. Titles included the silent version of QUO VADIS? (1913), CLEOPATRA (1963), SPARTACUS (1960) and TOTO AND CLEOPATRA (1963)! That's my kind of event.


Monday, November 27, 2023


Fariza (Wandisa Guida) has a special gift of flowers for Maciste (Reg Park) in MACISTE IN KING SOLOMON'S MINES (1964)

One of the better Reg Park PEPLUM movies. As good as it is you sorta can see how bored Reg was of acting. He's phoning it in. He only comes alive during the many Feats of Strengths. On the other hand, Wandisa is having the time of her life playing a villainess. The flowers will knock him out. I should do a list of all the ways Heroes are rendered weak. This one is original. I definitely need a HD version of this. It is colourful and fun, and filled with over-the-top Feats of Strengths. 

PEPLUM Movie Poster


Colourful and action-packed but more comic book style the the regular poster. Good likeness of Mark. 

Friday, November 24, 2023

Image of the week!

Hercules (Mickey Hargitay) meets Hippolyta (Jayne Mansfield) for the first time and is shocked to see that she looks exactly like Deianira (also played by Jayne Mansfield) in THE LOVES OF HERCULES (1960). 


A special edition of TOMORROW'S MAN magazine with Steve Reeves and his career. Photos from his PEPLUM movies. That's a young Steve on the cover. 35c!

Thursday, November 23, 2023


Steve Reeves, as Hadji Murad, and Scilla Gabel in THE WHITE WARRIOR (1959) 

Directed by Riccardo Freda, THE WHITE WARRIOR is Steve's most 'serious' movie of his career. It has some fun pulpy action here and there, but the overall tone is more on drama than action. Freda also edited the movie and Mario Bava was the cinematographer. Quite the talent behind the camera. Personally, I like it but I feel there were many missed opportunities with it. First, Steve is at his biggest in this movie. He looks like a beast. Unfortunately, for us fans of Reeves, he kept his clothes on for most of the movie. That one wrestling scene where his takes his shirt off shows how massive he was. I have many versions of this film. Few of them are alright. Since the beautiful cinematography is by Bava, I feel the movie should be saturated with colours but most prints are muted. The old DVD from VCI is, imo, the most accurate when it comes to colour (the image quality itself of the transfer is not that good though...). Nice vivid colours. Hopefully, when a HD print of this surfaces, it will retain the beautiful colours.


Costume designer Irene Sharaff makes some adjustments to the dazzling and ornate costume worn by Elizabeth Taylor on the set of CLEOPATRA (1963)

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

HD Alert!

Yvonne Furneaux as Semiramis in SLAVE QUEEN OF BABYLON (1963)

These screenshots are from a HD copy. It's not from the recent Blu-ray release. The image is excellent, for the most part. I have no complaints. There are scenes were the image is not as crystal clear, such as the one at 43:40, but I think this is more due to lighting or the film process than the transfer itself. Exterior scenes during the day, as seen below (with John Ericson), are beautiful. Interior scenes are also nice (above), depending on the lighting. Night scenes, inside or outside, are sometimes so so. It was originally shot in CinemaScope. No English version in HD. 

Compared to most of the transfer, this scene is murky. Note that there's no detail in her hair. Looks like DVD quality. But I think it's more due to the film process than transfer.

The art of José Luis Salinas

While searching for stuff on eBay, I came across examples of the art by José Luis Salinas. I was impressed by his work. He's a comic artist and worked on Westerns but also did other topics, including portraits of people from Antiquity. What a nice accidental find. 



Monday, November 20, 2023


Sylva Koscina as Iole in HERCULES (1958)

Maybe not the most flattering photo of this lovely lady but this scene, of Iole grieving the death of her brother, is always effective. Thanks to good direction by Pietro Francisci and Sylva's acting. With that being said, many have noted and wrote to me about the artwork in the background. What is going on there? Yes, people have mentioned this to me in the past, even if I noticed it myself beforehand. 

PEPLUM Movie Poster

Thai poster of COLOSSUS OF THE ARENA (1962) 

Colourful poster of photos and artwork. Thai posters are great.

Friday, November 17, 2023

Image of the week!

Obro (Gordon Mitchell) fights with the giant Kronos (Aldo Pedinotti) in GIANT OF METROPOLIS (1961)

VHS Covers!

VHS covers of THE RED SHEIK (1960) starring Channing Pollock and Luciana Gilli. Difficult to find VHS covers for this one. No English cover.


German VHS cover. This one is amazing. The artwork has nothing to do with the movie and the photos on the back cover are from SANDOKAN - PIRATE OF MALAYSIA (1964) starring Steve Reeves. Talk about Cinematic Confusion. The German title translates as LORD OF THE DESERT.

French VHS cover. The artwork is from the posters of the original release.

VHS cover from Thailand.

Channing Pollock and Luciana Gilli

Thursday, November 16, 2023


Edmund Purdom and Rossana Podestà in FURY OF THE PAGANS (1960) 

Imagine GOLIATH AND THE BARBARIANS (1959) but without Steve Reeves and you basically get this movie. Yes, the story is different but the production closely resembles the Steve Reeves movie. I mean, it's also known as FURY OF THE BARBARIANS. This movie is forgotten or is seldomly mentioned anywhere. Maybe have a Steve Reeves would have made it more memorable. It's not bad by any means, and the two actors are favourites but the movie is sorta bland. It needed more oomph, certainly with a movie with FURY in its title.


Bette Davis visits the set of BEN-HUR (1959) with director William Wyler (left), and with Charlton Heston and Stephen Boyd who are still in costume.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Clip of the week: HEAD OF A TYRANT (1959)

The great Holophernes (Massimo Girotti) arrives in Bethulia. With Renato Baldini. Top PEPLUM!


Tuesday, November 14, 2023


Astra (Gianna Maria Canale) invokes Kobrak (Guido Celano) in GOLIATH AND THE VAMPIRES (1961)

A simple special effects of superimposing Kobrak into scenes. The last image is a practical effect which is very cool. We never get to see Kobrak clearly though. 

Kobrak kills the Sultan (Mario Feliciani) 

Amahil (Van Aikens) handing Kobrak a cup filled with blood. Great scene. 

Ancient history stuff on TIKTOK!

If you have the TikTok app, there are some cool stuff on it of interest to those who love Greco-Roman history.


The TikTok above shows all the Roman Emperors from 27 BC to 1453 AD! Really amazing and informative video.


Above and below: from the account THE CULTURE MUSE, the lady is well informed on all things pertaining to Greek, Roman or anything from Antiquity. Make sure to follow her account.


Monday, November 13, 2023


Yssour (Mario Petri) convinces Goliath (Peter Lupus) in participating in a wrestling match, while Fatma (Helga Liné) approves in GOLIATH AT THE CONQUEST Of DAMASCUS (1965)

Fun film which is still lacking a decent copy. I have multiple versions of this movie and they're mostly in bad quality. How bad are they? In this scene, Helga is cropped out. I only have two copies with the framing is sorta intact. And the quality of the image is not that good. Wrestling scenes were common in PEPLUM movies. Here, the wrestling matches are done in an open public space. Ah those days! 😂

PEPLUM Movie Poster

Original Italian poster of THE WARIOR AND THE SLAVE GIRL (1958)

Nice artwork. It has little to do with the movie itself but still nice nonetheless.

Friday, November 10, 2023

Image of the week!

Maciste (Kirk Morris) didn't have time to say goodbye to Fania in the climax to MACISTE IN HELL (1962) 

BY THE GODS! magazine...

You can get BY THE GODS! magazine at Magcloud.

15% off with the code NOV15. Valid until November 13.

At the movies...

QUO VADIS (1951) at the Astor in Time Square. Incredible display and billboard. That's a neon sign of Deborah Kerr tied at the stake.

Thursday, November 9, 2023


Lisa Gastoni, as Messalina, torments Marilù Tolo in THE LAST GLADIATOR (1964) 

This is, by far, the best performance of Lisa Gastoni in a PEPLUM movie. She's always good but this one is brilliant. The way she goes after poor slave girl Tolo is entertaining. Her interpretation of Messalina is great! Marilù looks great as a blonde but I have to say I prefer her with darker hair. One of the best late era PEPLUM movies. Well worth watching. 


Ricardo Montalban, in costume, giving an interview on the set of THE QUEEN OF BABYLON (1954)

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Clip of the week: COLOSSUS AND THE HEADHUNTERS (1963)

Kirk Morris as Maciste doing what he does best: thwarting the bad guys! 

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

HD Alert!

Sylvia Lopez and Edmund Purdom in HEROD THE GREAT (1959)

The movie is not available on Blu-ray, in Europe or North America. But it is (or was?) available for streaming in Spain, I believe. The print is stunning. I didn't retouch the images. Will it ever be available on Blu-ray?


Sylvia Lopez, Sandra Milo and Corrado Pani. 

Vintage Article

Old article on HERCULES and Steve Reeves. Nice.



Monday, November 6, 2023


Lisa Gastoni and Jean Sorel in THE MAN WHO LAUGHS (1966) 

Directed by Sergio Corbucci who directed DJANGO the same year which became a hit around the world. I like the movie but it's an odd film in that it feels more like a TV movie than something made for the big screen. It was produced by Joseph Fryd, an American producer who supervised a number of PEPLUM productions, including HERCULES, SAMSON AND ULYSSES (1963), just as the genre was slowly dying. In this scene, the handsome Jean Sorel plays the disfigured man who covers his face. Sorel has a dual role in the movie. As I often say, any movie with Lisa Gastoni is worth watching including this one.

PEPLUM Movie Poster

Spanish poster of THE LAST DAYS OF POMPEII (1959) 

Simple poster but cool. When Steve Reeves fights with the gladiator in the movie, he's not shirtless. In fact, he's pretty much covered for most of the film. 

Friday, November 3, 2023

Image of the week!

Hercules (Dan Vadis) is put to the test in HERCULES THE INVINCIBLE (1964)