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La Furia di Ercole

The Fury of Hercules
Hercule se Déchaine / Samson, Befreier der Versklavten

Italy/France 1962
produced by
Cineproduzioni Associati, Comptoir Francais du Film
directed by Gianfranco Parolini
starring Brad Harris, Mara Berni, Brigite Corey (= Luisella Boni), Serge Gainsbourg, Carlo Tamberlani, Irena Prosen, Alan Steel (= Sergio Cani), Gianfranco Gasparri, Romano Ghini, Ivan Dobric, Niksa Stefanini
written by Gianfranco Parolini, Sergio Sollima, M.D'Amiens, Arpad DeRiso, Larry Madison, Giovanni Simonelli, music by Carlo Innocenzi

Hercules, Hercules (Brad Harris), Hercules in Italy, Hercules in the 1950's/60's

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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After years of absence, Hercules (Brad Harris) returns to Arpad, to find his old friend the king dead & his daughter Cnisia (Mara Berni) under the influence of her sinister advisor Menistos (Serge Gainsbourgh), & he plans something ... well, sinister.

Even at the celebration of Hercules' arrival, 2 assassins sent by Menistos make an attempt on queen Cnisia's life, but with Hercules' side she has nothing to fear ... & Menistos successfully blames the rebels for the crime, & everybody seems to believe. But that same night slave girl Daria (Brigitte Corey) visits Hercules & shows him the injustice done to the people of Arpad, including slave work, arresting political opponents & looting neighbouring kingdoms, all ordered by Cnisia under the advice of Menistos. & that's not all, the next day, Daria's sister, daughter of the rebel leader, is to be sacrificed. Of course Hercules wouldn't be Hercules wouldn't he promise Daria to save her sister ... & the only way to save her is to survive 3 tests in the arena the next day: to fight & kill a lion, to fight & kill a gorilla & to defeat Arpad's strongman Caldos (Alan Steel). Of course Hercules succeeds on all three accounts, soon flees Arpad with Daria's sister, & once having reached the rebels' hideout, he promises to join them.

Soon, he also frees the slaves from the dungeons of Arpad, & together with them & the citizens of Arpad ahving grown tired of Cnisia's & Mensitos' rule, he figures there's nothing that can stop the revolution ... but Menistos has since found out that slavegirl Daria, while acting as his mistress, is indeed one of the rebels & Hercules' current love, so he decides to hypnotize her to lure Hercules into a trap, which leaves him in a dungeon with poisoned gasses draining his power ... but then queen Cnisia herself - of course secretly in love with Hercules - has a sudden change of heart & saves Hercules from ceertain death, even if he is leading a rebellion against her. Such a noble gesture of course can't go unpunished, & soon she is speared by one of Menistos' men.

But ultimately nothing can stop the revolution any more, & in the end, Menistos tries to make one last desperate attempt to escape taking Daria as a hostage ... but ultimately he ends up riddled by spears, & everything is fine again.

 


One of the duller Hercules-movies, that does (of course) not stick to the mythological Hercules in the slightest, but somehow also refuses to let the fantasy go into overdrive (like so many of the later Hercules movies), instead it tells a very down to earth evil-royals-vs-benign-rebles story, that never really gains all that much momentum.

Filmed back-to-back with Sansone/Samson in Yugoslavia, with which this film also shares the main cast.

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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On the same day
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directed by
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written by
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starring
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out now on DVD

 

 

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