Saturday, June 22, 2013

Maciste Against Hercules in the Vale of Woe (1961)

often called "Hercules in the Valley of Woe" this is a comedy peplum, along the lines of MY SON, THE HERO (which I've yet to see).  it's an intentional comedy, and not really a sword and sandal peplum, though there's enough of that to go around.

two wrestling promoters (ignore imdb's synopses, it couldn't be more wrong if they tried) get aboard a time machine and end up in ancient Mycene.  many shenanigans take place between them and Franco Franchi and Ciccio Ingrassia as well as the rulers ending up in a bout between Maciste and Hercules.
here's the rather unusual looking time machine.  it can fly so it won't end up materializing inside solid matter.  well, that's my assumption.
this is the Count, played by Mario Carotenuto.  I found him quite funny, and not just for the reason that he looked like Colin Mochrie.  since this was a dubbed version,fullscreen and rather murky, it's hard to judge any of the actors very well, but I thought they all did a good job, considering the the material.
Maciste spends most of his time under Circe's enchantment, which transfers his strength over to the Count.  this results in a battle between the Count and Hercules.  the outcome of this may change the course of history.
Echo manages to free Maciste and turn Circe into a pig, which is an interesting end.  Maciste is played by and is dubbed rather like an empty headed body builder.  who says they didn't have actors doing dubs?
so finally we get to see our heroes wrestle.  for about 2 minutes and then we follow the promoters back to present day Rome.  go figure.  it's not a bad movie and I found it funny overall.  I've seen worse peplum movies.

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