Peplum Paradise Part 2: Italian Historical and Fantasy films from 1970 onwards.

This is a list of historical (set pre-1800) or historical-fantasy films produced or co-produced by Italy from 1970 until the present day - taking in the peplum porn cycle of the 70's and the 80's sword and sorcery revival.

The list is alphabetical using the most common English titles (where applicable), so the IMDb titles may appear to be all over the place alphabetically.

Hopefully this list is as complete as possible, but I would welcome any suggestions of titles I may have omitted.

I have included a few additional titles at the end of the main list which bear some relevance to the subject.

I will be updating the list regularly with new and expanded reviews and any new titles that I may discover.

Latest Updates:
Review: Scipio The African (1971)
Review: Lucrezia Giovane (1974)
Review: Salome (1972)
Expanded Review: The Seven Magnificent Gladiators (1983)
Review: Helen, Yes..., Helen Of Troy (1973)

If you want to be the first to know when my lists are updated then join my "Peplum Paradise" group on Facebook.

This list is a companion piece to
Peplum Paradise Part 1: Italian Historical and Fantasy films 1949-1969 (http://www.imdb.com/list/9zpI-Wdt6pU/)
Peplum Paradise Part 5: Animated Historical and Fantasy films 1949 onwards (http://www.imdb.com/list/XHCOctNtVqg/)
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1.
Adanggaman (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In West Africa during the late 17th century, King Adanggaman leads a war against his neighboring tribes... (90 mins.)
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
2.
The Adventures of Hercules II (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  
Hercules searches for the Seven Thunderbolts of Zeus, which have been stolen by renegade gods. (88 mins.)
Director: Lewis Coates
“ THE ADVENTURES OF HERCULES

Daft as a brush sequel to Hercules (1983), with an opening sequence stolen from the ‘monsters from the id’ scene in Forbidden Planet. Lou Ferrigno, ridiculously pumped up, does battle with a man in a monkey suit and slime people in the best peplum tradition. Much more fun than it’s predecessor, largely due to a total lack of all vestiges of sense in the script and a non-existent budget. ” - PeplumParadise
 
3.
Super Stooges vs the Wonder Women (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  
Three men with supernatural powers interfere in a tribal warfare to prevent evil Amazons destroying the inhabitants of a village. (105 mins.)
Director: Al Bradley
“ AMAZONS VS. SUPERMEN

Would-be wacky, campy spoof which largely misses the mark, and the dreadful dubbed dialogue does nothing to improve matters, neither does a music score more suitable for a Benny Hill TV episode. Attempting to appeal to as many seventies markets as possible we have three heroes, one white and vaguely muscular, one black and more defined, and one oriental and scrawny, pitting their (lack of) combined strength and wisdom against a tribe of Amazons. Badly-coiffured leading man Aldo Canti had been one of the unheralded original ‘Ten Gladiators’ in the Sixties. Watch for men in drag standing in for female warriors in the medium-shot fight sequences, a standard practice in seventies Amazon films, but here even more glaringly obvious than usual. The friend I watched this with, who is not a peplum aficionado, found this one hilarious, so it’s possibly worth giving it the benefit of the doubt. ” - PeplumParadise
 
4.
Amore e libertà - Masaniello (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
The film is based upon the true and tragic events, which took place in Naples in July 1647. The historical... (120 mins.)
 
5.
“ THE AMOROUS NIGHTS OF ALI BABA

Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
6.
Arabian Nights (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In this film inspired by the ancient erotic and mysterious tales of Mid-West Asia, the main story concerns... (130 mins.)
“ Maria Montez must have been turning in her grave when this was released! Pier Paolo Pasolini indulges his desire to shock by waving more erect penises at the audience than I’ve ever seen in a non-pornographic film, along with odd scenes of decapitation and animal cruelty thrown in for good measure. Visually the production looks more professional than most of the director’s works, and his cast of game-for-anything non-professional actors put on a good show and are a little more attractive than usual in a youthful, pretty way, which helps. The storyline doesn’t hold up to scrutiny, being little more than a series of patched together scenes (with no apparent relevance to the familiar tale one usually associates with the title), which every now and then go back to a semi-coherent back story, and it’s historical (and peplum) credentials are a little dubious, but it is nonetheless one of Pasolini’s most accessible films. ” - PeplumParadise
 
7.
La araucana (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
(100 mins.)
Director: Julio Coll
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
8.
The Arena (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
Two thousand years ago, the people of Rome are so blasée, so used to violence, that entertaining them becomes a political problem... (90 mins.)
Director: Steve Carver
“ Never one to miss a chance to cash in on an current cinematic trend, executive producer Roger Corman here combines the Amazon women gladiator genre with the women in prison pic, plus he throws in a naked Pam Grier to cater to the blaxploitation market. It’s all done in a knowingly tongue-in-cheek style which manages to combine a well-told story with the necessary gratuitous thrills expected by seventies audiences. Several Sixties peplum stars make appearances under strange pseudonyms, Rosalba Neri chewing the scenery as ruthless Cornelia whose effeminate husband Prisium (Silvio Laurenzi) buys the women for her as slaves, Daniele Vargas hamming it up hysterically as Timorrchus, a dithering voyeuristic host of gladiatorial games, Pietro Ceccarelli giving a surprisingly moving performance as the gladiator trainer with a heart, plus Paul Muller and Mimmo Palmara, who are wasted in little more than cameos. The catfight-cum-food fight is definitely a classic. Not one for the P.C. brigade, but most other sword and sandal and exploitation fans should find plenty to enjoy. ” - PeplumParadise
 
9.
Art of Love (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
Young student Claudine has a dream in which the Roman student Cornelius, fascinated by the beautiful wife of the commander, attends lectures on the art of love of great Ovid. Ancient tragedy happens again in a few centuries (100 mins.)
“ THE ART OF LOVE

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
10.
Artemisia (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Artemisia Gentileschi (1593-1653) was one of the first well-known female painters. The movie tells the story of her youth... (98 mins.)
Director: Agnès Merlet
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
12.
Astérix and Obélix: God Save Britannia (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
Asterix crosses the channel to help second-cousin Anticlimax face down Julius Caesar and invading Romans. (110 mins.)
Director: Laurent Tirard
“ This fourth in the sporadic Asterix series has a weak plot and any semblance of historic accuracy is thrown out of the window with the inclusion of electric guitars, horse drawn red London buses and jeans, but despite these faults I found myself enjoying it. The comedy, and particularly the performances of Edouard Bear (a series newcomer) and Gerard Depardieu in the title roles, is a lot more controlled than in previous films in the series, and this works to the films advantage. Catherine Deneuve is an unlikely choice for British Queen, playing it more Elizabeth II than Boadicia, but not really having a lot to do. Unfortunately the complete mix of cultures from Roman times to the present is a silliness too far and a detriment to the film. If the series stretches to a fifth instalment here’s hoping it contains these performances with a less idiotic script. ” - PeplumParadise
 
13.
Asterix and Obelix Meet Cleopatra (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Astérix and Obélix go to Egypt to help architect Numérobis who is building a palace for Cleopatra. (107 mins.)
Director: Alain Chabat
“ The second in the series, with a new director (Alain Chabat, who also plays Caesar), is a definite big improvement, with a lot more emphasis on verbal humour over physical (I think it also helped that a subtitled version was available to review). Christian Clavier and Gerard Depardieu return as the title characters, but give a lot more controlled performances this time around, while the opening up to different locations (Morocco doubling very impressively for Egypt) and the addition of new characters work in the films favour. The story concerns the Gauls going to Egypt to help Cleopatra (Monica Bellucci) build a palace for Caesar (Caesar’s Palace, geddit?) with the help of their magic potion. Still no masterpiece, the jokes have about a 50% hit rate, but that’s 50% better than it’s predecessor. ” - PeplumParadise
 
14.
Asterix and Obelix vs. Caesar (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
The well-known little village from the Asterix and Obelix-comic books is in trouble: It is the last place not controlled by Rome... (109 mins.)
Director: Claude Zidi
“ Live-action adaptations of beloved animated characters (Popeye, The Flintstones, Scooby Doo, Garfield, etc.) tend to be, almost without exception, disastrous, but even in that pool of cess this dramatisation of the internationally known French comic dealing with the Gauls in the time of the Roman invasions lies near the bottom. Admittedly I did have to watch the English dubbed version (there being no subtitled version on the market), and there was not a single laugh to be had in the film’s entire length, but from the mugging hysteric performances I can’t imagine that the French original would be much different. The entire cast play it to the slapstick max, and while they all appear to have had a hell of a time filming it, unfortunately for the audience it’s more like a slow torture. Someone somewhere must have liked it however, since, to date, it has spawned three-rather sporadic-sequels. ” - PeplumParadise
 
15.
Asterix at the Olympic Games (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
Astérix and Obélix compete at the Olympics in order to help their friend Lovesix marry Princess Irina. Brutus also tries to win the game with his own team and get rid of his father Julius Caesar. (116 mins.)
“ The third installment in the series arrived belatedly six years after the second with a rejuvenated Asterix in the form of Clovis Cornillac, two new directors, and lots of attractive CGI effects. The humour is on a par with the second film, meaning it’s watchable without being hilarious. A surprisingly effective addition to the cast is an aged and barely recognizable Alain Delon as a vain Caesar. The title just about tells you all you need to know about the storyline, and is certainly an obvious destination for the series if ever there was one. Fans of muscle should find plenty to keep them satisfied at the games. ” - PeplumParadise
 
16.
Ator, the Fighting Eagle (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.0/10 X  
The son of Torren learns of his heritage, goes to avenge the deaths of his fellow villagers, and rescue... (98 mins.)
Director: David Hills
“ Highly enjoyable pile of old nonsense, where no matter how ridiculous things get, you must accept them because “it is written”. Veteran genre star Edmund Purdom, in one of the worst wigs ever (in this genre that’s really saying something), is Griba, guardian of the baby Ator. The baby grows up very rapidly to become Miles O’Keeffe, with full lacquered eighties hair and tatty fur shoulder pads. He is up against tarantula-loving Dakkar (played – surprise, surprise – by sixties peplum stalwart Dakar in silver eye shadow – notice the subtle spelling difference!), who is out to kill Ator at all costs because – well, “it is written”. Ator is aided and abetted by a baby bear (preferable at least to dwarfs and children), eighties peplum queen Sabrina Siani as an Amazon warrior called Roon, and Laura ‘Black Emmanuelle’ Gemser as a sorceress. This is so earnestly silly that I defy anyone not to like it, so good in fact that it spawned three sequels. ” - PeplumParadise
 
17.
The Blade Master (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.2/10 X  
Muscle-bound Ator and his mute East Asian sidekick travel from the ends of the earth to save his aged mentor from the evil, mustachioed Zor. (92 mins.)
Director: David Hills
“ Following a hilarious caveman prologue and a lengthy budget-saving flashback sequence to what has happened in the previous film, Miles O’Keeffe is back in all his lacquered glory in the title role of this sequel to Ator The Fighting Eagle. What passes for a plot teams Ator with wizard’s daughter Mila (Lisa Foster) as they fight their way to save her father and free the people from classically camp evil villain Zor (David Brandon). Every bit as ludicrously enjoyable as is predecessor, though whoever was responsible for shooting most of the outdoor scenes with the sun behind the actors and no lighting hopefully never worked again. ” - PeplumParadise
 
18.
Attila flagello di Dio (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
The misadventures of Attila and his band of barbarians as they take up arms against the Roman Empire in their native Milano. (91 mins.)
Director: Castellano, Pipolo
“ This is a low-budget Italian slapstick comedy take on the life of Attila the Hun (Diego Abatantuono). Unfortunately (or maybe not) the only available prints are in Italian or German, so I watched the former. On a purely visual level the film is mildly amusing, with Attila and his band of half a dozen Huns, resembling a tribe of cavemen cum 80’s hair metal band, doing a lot of pratfalls and mugging wildly, with a habit of shouting loudly at each other for emphasis. This film apparently has developed a cult following in Italy where it seems to rate highly as a “so bad it’s good” classic, but I think you must need a good grasp of Italian to appreciate it since a lot of the humour reportedly centres on the characters accents, the subtleties of which are lost on a non-Italian speaker. ” - PeplumParadise
 
19.
Sangraal, la spada di fuoco (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  
A swordsman's wife is murdered by followers of the evil Goddess Rani. He vows vengeance upon the cult and journeys to the Ark of the Templars to get a magic crossbow that will help him accomplish his mission. (85 mins.)
“ BARBARIAN MASTER

Typical silly Conan-lite with plenty of breasts, buttocks and excessive gore. Pietro Torrisi is Sangraal, leader of a band of “peaceful people”, whom he leads into a fight and gets killed at the first opportunity, then teams up with Yvonne Fraschetti to go in search of the Golden Goddess (Sabrina Siani), in the hope that she can bring his massacred wife back to life. Erstwhile Maciste Brother Mario Novelli is barely recognisable from his sixties pretty boy heyday as Nanuk, the evil villain of the piece. The only original touch is giving the hero a wise oriental sidekick (Hal Yamanouchi), otherwise it’s just very average and very low budget all the way. ” - PeplumParadise
 
20.
The Barbarians (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  
Two twin barbarians seek revenge from the warlord who massacred their tribe and captured them when they were small children. (87 mins.)
Director: Ruggero Deodato
“ THE BARBARIANS

This has a wonderful opening sequence, where a traveling circus of freaks and magicians is attacked on the road by some bandits (who look almost as peculiar as their victims), and after one of the strangest stand-offs you are ever likely to see, the survivors, including two twin boys, are taken into captivity. The boys are put into training as warriors, with the bizarre looking Dirtmaster (none other than Michael Berryman, from The Hills Have Eyes, who spends the entire movie laughing maniacally) as their trainer. The boys soon grow into muscle-bound barbarian warriors, Gore and Kadar (gloriously talentless Mongolic twin body builders The Paul Brothers in-sadly-their only peplum). This film is original, bizarre and completely bonkers, and surprisingly well made with obvious intentional, but not intrusive, humour. Director Ruggero Deodato, best known for Cannibal Holocaust, had started out his career as assistant director on numerous sixties peplums. ” - PeplumParadise
 
21.
Sword of War (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  
German Emperor Barbarossa will stop at nothing to conquer and build his empire. But a young man from Milan, along with his army of 900 men known as the Company of Death, is prepared to challenge the Emperor. (139 mins.)
“ Rather confusing tale of the German invasion of northern Italy, with so many flashbacks and flash-forwards that you never know where you are. Rutger Hauer, who if it wasn’t for the extremely obvious help of L’Oreal would be playing Barbabianca, plays ruthless German Emperor Barbarossa, while rent-a-baddie F. Murray Abraham leads the defense as an equally unpleasant Milanese lord. With nobody particularly nice to root for and the various Italian factions also fighting each other you soon give up caring who wins. Not content with being a mere historical mishmash, we also have nonsensical religious visions from an extremely annoying hysterical girl to contend with. That this was one of the few purely Italian historical pictures made in several decades is a truly sad reflection on a once great industry. ” - PeplumParadise
 
22.
Beatrice (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Somewhere in France during the Middle Ages. Béatrice is impatient to see her father return from English captivity... (131 mins.)
“ BEATRICE

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
23.
Battle of the Amazons (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  
A tribe of vicious female warriors terrorizes the countryside, and especially the males, until one day the men and some local villagers decide to fight back. (100 mins.)
Director: Al Bradley
“ BEAUTY OF THE BARBARIAN

This looks like it was made by a bunch of amateurs on a budget of 10p with costumes from Oxfam, a score stolen from Goldilocks and a script written by monkeys. This mess is pretty shocking considering that Alfonso Brescia was director or assistant director for quite a few 60’s peplums. Every Amazon cliché in the book is thrown into the pot with no thought whatsoever of creating a cohesive storyline. As for being so bad it’s good, it does have it’s moments (obvious male stunt doubles for the female warriors), hence the second star, but there are far better bad/good movies out there, this one’s just completely inept without even much of the requisite nudity and gore of other seventies productions to sell it. ” - PeplumParadise
 
24.
The Black Corsair (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Emilio di Roccabruna count of Ventimiglia is fighting Van Gould who ten years before had killed his father and stolen his family properties... (126 mins.)
Director: Sergio Sollima
“ THE BLACK PIRATE

For a few years in the late seventies, following the success of the Sandokan series (with which this one also shares the same director, editor and composer), Indian star Kabir Bedi was the go-to man if you wanted a likeable not-terribly-muscular star for your low budget peplum. The pretty straightforward plot has the Black Pirate (Bedi) swearing revenge on Duke Van Guld (Mel Ferrer), the man responsible for the death of his family. Along the way he picks up pirate-in-training Morgan (Angelo Infanti, in the role made famous by Steve Reeves) and unknowingly falls in love with Van Guld’s daughter, Honorata (wet blanket Carole Andre). On this showing Bedi is big on smouldering looks and handy with a sword, which is enough to see him through. Otherwise the storyline, production and badly-dubbed performances offer nothing out of the ordinary. ” - PeplumParadise
 
25.
Blackie the Pirate (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
Rivaling Pirates and Spanish gold are the ingredients for this story. Blackie the pirate is the one... (99 mins.)
Director: Vincent Thomas
“ BLACKIE THE PIRATE

The piratical genre should have been a natural for the buddy team of Terence Hill and Bud Spencer, particularly since Hill cut his teeth in a multitude of 60’s peplums back when he was plain old Mario Girotti. This is an amiable atypical pirate romp, but rather slow moving and moody, with the duo somewhat subdued. Surprisingly it’s blonde haired, blue eyed Hill who plays the title role, with the main plot centring around him buying feisty Countess Isabel (Silvia Monti), so he can ransom her at a profit. Watchable enough, but could have been better. ” - PeplumParadise
 
26.
Bloody Sin (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
(90 mins.)
 
27.
Adam and Eve (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  
God casts Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden because Eve decided to eat a forbidden apple that a talking snake told her to eat. The disgraced couple find themselves battling a coterie of various creatures. (91 mins.)
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
28.
Brancaleone at the Crusades (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
After saving an infant of royal blood, knight Brancaleone forms a new army and sets out to return the baby to his father: a prince fighting in the Crusades. (116 mins.)
Director: Mario Monicelli
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
29.
Brother Sun, Sister Moon (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
This is a dramatization of events in the life of St. Francis of Assisi from before his conversion experience through his audience with the pope... (122 mins.)
“ Rather slow biography of St. Francis of Assisi (Graham Faulkner) by Franco Zefferelli, usually the most accessible of the arty Italian auteurs (Pasolini and Fellini being the others) who attempted to subvert the peplum genre by turning it into art. It’s all rather a dull affair, with the largely muddy-brown palate and twee soundtrack by Donovan certainly not helping matters, although they do give it a certain hypnotic, dreamlike quality which was presumably the intention. In the film’s favour are attractive cinematography and costumes. Ultimately it left me little the wiser about a character of whom I admit to having no knowledge beforehand, who comes across as a harmless enough hippy crackpot, with little justification for the furore that he seems to incite. ” - PeplumParadise
 
30.
Cagliostro (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The mysterious Conte di Cagliostro holds supernatural powers he uses to heal the poor, but his activity is considered dangerous by the 18th century's establishment... (103 mins.)
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
31.
La calandria (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
(80 mins.)
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
32.
Caligula (1979)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
Details the graphic and shocking, yet undeniably tragic story of Rome's most infamous Caesar, Gaius Germanicus Caligula. (156 mins.)
Director: Tinto Brass
“ While this wasn’t the first peplum porn, it was most certainly the highest profile and most controversial, featuring as it does a cast of well known and respected British and Italian actors. Depicting the most debauched aspects of the life of Emperor Caligula (Malcolm McDowell, who gives a totally committed and convincing performance) and his descent into madness, it is, by all accounts, a fairly realistic portrait of the times. Whether or not it is any good is highly debatable, it is certainly fascinating to watch, and the curiosity value of seeing major stars in what is effectively big budget graphic hardcore pornography (and yes, it is going on while they are on screen) is undeniable. It is definitely excessive and not easy to watch and I can understand why some would find it distasteful, and it is neither attractive nor erotic, but it certainly should be seen so you can at least form your own opinion. The production values, including sets and costumes, are undeniably impressive. As for the difference between the mainstream release version and the notorious “unrated” version, the additional sex scenes really don’t contain much that wasn’t already there or add much to it, apart from a little tedium. There’s nothing I can write about the controversies surrounding the production that hasn’t been written before, but for a deeper insight I highly recommend the excellent blu-ray edition, which includes illuminating commentaries by McDowell and Helen Mirren. ” - PeplumParadise
 
33.
Caligula and Messalina (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  
The seductive Messalina (Betty Roland) will stop at nothing to become the most powerful woman in Rome... (155 mins.)
“ With neither the curiosity value of star performers nor the graphic sex, and with an identical plotline, poor performances and a dull script, this cheap cash-in on the infamous Caligula has absolutely no redeeming features whatsoever. Sold as part of the peplum-porn cycle of the late 70’s/early 80’s, this doesn’t even have much nudity, making it’s existence totally redundant. ” - PeplumParadise
 
34.
Caligula's Hot Nights (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  
In augusta, Rome of the Caesars the emperor Caligula has a serious problem: it must show your manhood... (88 mins.)
Director: Roberto Montero
“ CALIGULA'S HOT NIGHTS

Two years before the big one came this early sex comedy entry in the Caligula stakes, which manages the cardinal sins of being neither erotic nor funny, particularly in the dire English dub. That the plot centres around the Emperors inability to achieve an erection should give you a good idea of the standards we’re talking about here, and that he addresses the Roman populace (who number about 40) in the middle of a field should give you an idea of the production values. The sex is about as naughty as a Carry On film, consisting of tits and arse and little more. A total waste of celluloid. ” - PeplumParadise
 
35.
Roma. L'antica chiave dei sensi (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.7/10 X  
Roman emperor Caligula leaves the last days of glory amidst orgies of food and sex. During a show by two nude slaves... (84 mins.)
Director: Lawrence Webber
“ CALIGULA'S SLAVES

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
36.
The Canterbury Tales (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Pasolini's artistic, sometimes violent, always vividly cinematic retelling of some of Chaucer's most erotic tales. (112 mins.)
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
38.
Conquest (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
A young man, armed with a magical bow and arrows, embarks on a mystical journey through a mystical land to rid it of all evil and joins forces with an outlaw to take down an evil witch bent on claiming the magic bow for evil. (88 mins.)
Director: Lucio Fulci
“ Notorious gore meister Lucio Fulci’s only foray into the 80’s sword and sorcery cycle is a nonsensical mess, liberally sprinkled with gratuitous blood and nudity, and inexplicably filmed in hazy soft focus (probably in an attempt to disguise the cheapness of the not-so-special effects). A couple of warriors (Jorge Rivero and Andrea Occhipinti) team up to overthrow an evil sorceress (Sabrina Siani), having to overcome a number of silly-looking monsters along the way. Totally inept and possibly good for a laugh if you’re in the right frame of mind. ” - PeplumParadise
 
39.
Los corsarios (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
After the death of her father, the viceroy of a small Caribean island, the beautiful young Isabella is in a big danger... (102 mins.)
Director: Ted Kaplan
“ THE CORSAIRS

This is an unexceptional comic swashbuckler from the experienced hand of Ferdinando Baldi who had helmed a number of middling peplum efforts during the genre’s heyday. The story is some light fluff about a pirate coming to the rescue of the daughter of a murdered viceroy on a Caribbean island, whose evil cousin wants the territory for himself. Overly-tanned blonde American singing star Dean Reed’s real life story is far more interesting than his film roles, and by this point in his career he had already been a big star in South America before coming to Europe to star in spaghetti westerns. On this outing he fits in the Terence Hill mould without much to distinguish him from the pack. The film looks attractive, but the acting is below par and the storyline offers us nothing we haven’t seen done better before or since. ” - PeplumParadise
 
40.
Il corsaro (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  
An English buccaneer loses his ship in a cards game, and tries to pass for a priest, to restart a new life... (90 mins.)
Director: Tony Mulligan
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
41.
Marquis de Sade's Justine (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  
Justine is a nubile young virgin cast out of a French orphanage and thrust into a depraved world of prostitution... (99 mins.)
Director: Chris Boger
“ This may be a British/German/Italian co-production on paper, but in all other aspects it’s a thoroughly British entry in the then-popular nunsploitation genre, loosely based on the Marquis De Sade’s Justine. Koo Stark, best remembered today more for her brief controversial affair with Prince Andrew than for her acting talents, plays nymphette novice nun Justine, and has the innocent prettiness and willingness to frequently disrobe that the part requires. Justine winds up in a brothel where her virtue becomes a prized possession, then escapes only to be taken advantage of again. The film is well filmed and even reasonably acted, but the script is dreadful and you can’t get over the fact that it’s soft-core (what's the point?) smut dressed up in posh clothing with a few misguided stabs at arthouse pretention. ” - PeplumParadise
 
42.
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
43.
The Decameron (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
An adaptation of nine stories from Boccaccio's "Decameron". (112 mins.)
“ Most people either love or hate Pasolini’s work, and I have to admit that, with the exception of Salo, I fall into the second camp. This, the first of Pasolini’s controversy-baiting ‘Trilogy of life,’ is typical, stringing together a series of barely related tales (here supposedly based on the Boccaccio) using largely non-professional, mostly unattractive actors, and incorporating such tasteful topics as people falling into excrement and fornicating nuns, with little justification other than to shock, and what may have been shocking in 1971 is pretty run of the mill thirty years down the line. ” - PeplumParadise
 
44.
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
45.
Decameroticus (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
(96 mins.)
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
46.
Delusions of Grandeur (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Don Salluste, a petty tyrant in his own home and minister of the King of Spain, falls from grace. Wanting revenge... (108 mins.)
Director: Gérard Oury
 
47.
Diary of a Roman Virgin (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
(75 mins.)
Director: Joe D' Amato
 
48.
The Duchess (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A chronicle of the life of 18th century aristocrat Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, who was reviled for her extravagant political and personal life. (110 mins.)
Director: Saul Dibb
“ While the Italians may get a co-production credit, in all other respects this is a thoroughly British production based on historical events. Keira Knightley gives a powerful performance as Georgiana, a feisty young woman whose world is torn apart when she is forced into a loveless marriage with the cruel Duke (Ralph Fiennes), but who makes the most of a bad situation and becomes the toast of 18th century London. As you would expect from a costume drama with the BBC name attached, such items as costumes, hair and set decorations are immaculate, aided by stunning authentic locations. It is a rather cold, joyless affair, but aside from that there is little to find fault with. ” - PeplumParadise
 
50.
The Emperor Caligula: The Untold Story (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  
The mad Roman emperor Caligula romances a young Moor woman plotting to kill him while he continues his debauched lifestyle of sex and murder. (109 mins.)
Director: David Hills
“ THE EMPEROR CALIGULA

Just what the world needed, another tiresome telling of the Caligula story, this one with more (fake looking) gore and torture than usual, and the dubious selling points of featuring Laura ‘Black Emanuelle’ Gemser and coming from the director of several notorious ‘video nasties’. David Brandon does what he can with the title role, but it’s all pretty pointless after you’ve seen Malcolm McDowell, and Laura Gemser is completely wasted. At least the production values are fairly high and there’s plenty of full frontal female nudity. The sex is pretty graphic for once too, at least in the 2-hour plus ‘integrale’ version, and if the sights of pensioners and a dwarf receiving fellatio and a horse being masturbated are what gets you going then your luck is in. As peplum-porn goes this is better than most, but that’s really not much of a recommendation, it’s way too long, and it’s definitely not Disney. ” - PeplumParadise
 
51.
Eros Perversion (1979)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
Soft porn musical film version of Williams Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night". (66 mins.)
Director: Ron Wertheim
 
52.
The Erotic Dreams of Cleopatra (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  
Caesar brings the Egyptian queen Cleopatra to Rome. (86 mins.)
Director: Cesar Todd
“ Dull, cheap soft-core porn, with talentless actors (I use the term lightly – they look and act like porn stars), a ridiculous script which is just an excuse to lead from one sexual encounter to the next and isn’t even laughable, even the sex is tiresome. If anyone cares, Cleopatra is in Rome, having and living out her erotic dreams, and it’s not even worth trying to follow the tiresome attempts at intrigue that go between. The mildly notorious scene where Cleo masturbates a piece of hosepipe between a horse’s legs in silhouette while Caesar is giving her one from behind is just plain odd. It looks like there must have been a harder-core version since there are some pretty abrupt cuts just when it looks like it could get interesting, but I haven’t been able to find any confirmation of this. ” - PeplumParadise
 
53.
Farinelli (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Farinelli, is the artistic name of Carlo Broschi, a young singer in Handel's time. He was castrated in his childhood in order to preserve his voice... (111 mins.)
Director: Gérard Corbiau
“ This is a fascinating and beautiful, but also rather uncomfortable, one-off oddity. The story concerns a boy called Carlo Broschi who is castrated while in his youth to preserve his high voice. Carlo grows up to be a theatrical sensation known as Farinelli (Stefano Dionisi), the pop star of his day, who uses his talent for procuring women for himself and his composer brother Riccardo (Enrico Lo Verso), and like a rock star he also acquires an opium habit. To add historical interest to the piece he also has an ongoing rivalry with the composer Handel (Jeroen Krabbe), as well as a slowly festering resentment of his brother. The attention to period detail is exquisite and the musical performances outstanding, but there is tastelessness to the subject matter that makes it an uneasy film to like, as opposed to appreciate. I’d give this one a “recommended with reservations” sticker. ” - PeplumParadise
 
54.
Fellini's Casanova (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Casanova is a libertine, collecting seductions and sexual feats. But he is really interested in someone... (155 mins.)
“ Fascinating, yet extremely dull, in the way only a Fellini film can be. Beautiful sets populated with grotesque people, led by an OTT performance from Donald Sutherland in the title role, himself the most unlikely and least attractive leading man since Jack Palance. The cinematography is stunning, the script incomprehensible, the costumes exquisite, the make-up ugly. In the end the negatives just slightly outweigh the positives, but the spotless restoration seen on the new French blu-ray release almost tips the balance (I yearn that some of the better sixties peplums would receive the same treatment – hopefully eventually they will!). ” - PeplumParadise
 
55.
Fiorina la vacca (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
(96 mins.)
“ FIORINA THE COW

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
56.
Flavia (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  
The slave Flavia works in a brothel of ancient Rome . It attracts the attention of the consul Valerius , a regular customer, who falls in love with her, inadvertently giving the start to a series of hidden envy and bloody clashes . (95 mins.)
Director: Lawrence Webber
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
57.
Per amore, solo per amore (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
The Nativity of Mary, from Joseph point of view. (114 mins.)
“ FOR LOVE, ONLY FOR LOVE

Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
58.
Francesco (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Docudrama about the life of St-Francis of Assisi (157 mins.)
Director: Liliana Cavani
“ Well this one certainly has curiosity value - Mickey Rourke, at the height of his Hollywood fame, as St. Francis of Assisi, in an Italian art house production from the director of The Night Porter. The film is very slow moving and pretty hard to follow for the most part, particularly if you are, as I was, unfamiliar with the story. Rourke’s performance is either brooding or lazy, depending on your generosity, but is in keeping with the meandering nature of the film. Personally I found it all rather sleep inducing (and this was the shortened version released to American cinemas), though possibly not without some artistic merit. ” - PeplumParadise
 
60.
Genghis Khan: The Story of a Lifetime (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The fate of a legendary boy, Temudjin, later the Genghis Khan, who became the most powerful emperor of Mongolia. With his army created one of the largest empires of all time. (120 mins.)
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
61.
Gladiator Games (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  
In a distant time and place, power is decided by a cruel game in which two teams of gladiators fight in a vast arena. (100 mins.)
Director: Stefano Milla
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
62.
Good King Dagobert (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  
(112 mins.)
Director: Dino Risi
 
63.
Gostanza da Libbiano (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
(93 mins.)
Director: Paolo Benvenuti
 
64.
Goya in Bordeaux (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Francisco Goya (1746-1828), deaf and ill, lives the last years of his life in voluntary exile in Bordeaux... (100 mins.)
Director: Carlos Saura
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
65.
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
66.
Gunan, King of the Barbarians (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.1/10 X  
The peaceful countryside village of Solmen is savagely assaulted by wild Ungats led by bloodthirsty Magen... (80 mins.)
Director: Frank Shannon
“ GUNAN, KING OF THE BARBARIANS

This is a bog standard early 80’s sword and sorcery Conan-lite effort. It does have the curiosity value of featuring a handful of old 60’s peplum faces. There’s Pietro Torrisi/Peter McCoy as not-too-bright hero Gunan, on a one-man mission to avenge his family, there’s Giovanni Cianfriglia as his nameless twin brother who gets decapitated rather early on, and then you’ve got an unrecognisable Emilio Messina as Nuriak, the dastardly villain of the piece, plus a fleeting turn from Fortunato Arena. This being the 80’s you also have the ubiquitous Sabrina Siani as the bimbo who doesn’t always remember to bleach her roots, but does spend more time with her boobs bared than covered. The budget is about as low as they come, and the running time is padded out with an abundance of slo-mo shots and a smattering of comedic gore. Aside from the curiosity value of seeing some old familiar faces there’s really very little here to recommend it. ” - PeplumParadise
 
67.
Harem Suare (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
As the Ottoman Empire comes to an end, an old servant spins a tale to keep the women in the Sultan's harem distracted... (125 mins.)
Director: Ferzan Ozpetek
 
68.
Hearts and Armour (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Bradamante, a woman wearing an invincible suit of armor, is travelling the countryside at the time of the Crusades... (98 mins.)
“ HEARTS AND ARMOUR

Well half the budget here seems to have gone on acquiring as many diverse suits of armour as possible, and they, at least, are impressive. Numerous men-and women-in armour ride around the countryside fighting each other at the slightest provocation, for no apparent reason (though the crusades and religion are mentioned in passing). Tanya Roberts, a year before her fleeting brush with Hollywood fame in Sheena and Bond, plays the daughter of a moor with some magical powers (someone seems to have neglected to let the casting director know that moors were black!). There are numerous comical decapitations long before they became the norm, and Tanya’s costume obligingly flaps open when required, so the gore hounds and pervs in the audience are catered for. It’s all rather silly, but it does have a certain charm and a bit of an unusual feminist slant. Some reports claim this was originally shot as a TV series, though I’ve found no information to substantiate this. ” - PeplumParadise
 
69.
Helen, Yes... Helen of Troy (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.7/10 X  
(94 mins.)
Director: Alfonso Brescia
“ This is a no-budget slapstick peplum sex romp, but given it’s pedigree it’s more amusing than it really has any right to be. Musician/comedian/hair hopper Don Backy had already appeared in several of these tiresome soft-core comedy affairs and Satyricon, but here is teamed with unknown cheerful beard and belly chappy Peter Landers (real name Pietro Scheggi) and, while they’re not about to give Hill and Spencer any sleepless nights, they do make for an amiable comedy team playing off each other well. For sixties peplum fans there are plenty of familiar faces to spot including Howard Ross, Michael (Atlas) Forest, Andrea Scotti, Nello Pazzafini, Bruno Arie, Pietro Torrisi and (missing from IMDb) Emilio Messina. The entire female cast is here solely to disrobe at the slightest provocation and do so frequently, though as expected it keeps to tasteful breasts and bums. What there is of a plot involves the two heroes swindling the palace of Mineleos (Pupo De Luca) and Agamemnon (Forest, a surprising comic revelation) and bedding every woman they come across. Not great, but compared with most of it’s ilk it’s a cut above, and even watching it in Italian (of which I understand about 40%) I did find myself laughing out loud on several occasions. ” - PeplumParadise
 
70.
Hercules (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.7/10 X  
The story of the Greek mythological figure, updated in this 80's version. (98 mins.)
Director: Lewis Coates
“ Ultra cheap production from Cannon, who were behind many of the 80’s peplum revival, made in the wake of the success of Conan The Barbarian. Lou Ferrigno plays the part like he’s still on the set of The Incredible Hulk, and bears a resemblance to Dan Vadis, but on a double dose of steroids. Sybil Danning is magnificent as ever, but doesn’t appear until half way through. Nice to see a number of sixties peplum faces popping up, including Brad Harris (who hasn’t aged well and apparently suggested Ferrigno for the role), Rossana Podesta, Raf Baldassarre and Gianni Garko. This has its charms, but is nowhere near as enjoyable as the same year’s Seven Magnificent Gladiators, which also teamed Ferrigno, Danning and Harris. This was successful enough commercially to spawn a sequel, The Adventures Of Hercules, 2 years later. ” - PeplumParadise
 
71.
Hercules: A Sex Adventure (1997 Video)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
(90 mins.)
Director: Joe D'Amato
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
72.
“ HOT NIGHTS OF THE DECAMERON ” - PeplumParadise
 
73.
In nome del popolo sovrano (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
1849 - Ciceruacchio declares the Independent Republic of Rome, but the French and the Austrians try to bring back the Pope to Rome. (110 mins.)
Director: Luigi Magni
 
74.
The Inquiry (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
A Roman agent is sent to Palestine to investigate rumors of the resurrection of an executed criminal. (107 mins.)
Director: Damiano Damiani
“ THE INQUIRY

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
75.
The Final Inquiry (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
In 35 A.D., a Roman tribune is sent to Palestine to investigate the death and possible resurrection of a certain Jesus from Nasareth. (112 mins.)
Director: Giulio Base
“ A remake of the 1986 film of the same name, this was originally a three hour Italian mini-series which was released as a two hour movie in other territories (and that is the version I had to review). Roman general Titus Valerius Taurus (Daniele Liotti), accompanied by his Germanic slave Brixos (an unrecognizable Dolph Lundgren), is sent to Judea by Emperor Tiberius (Max von Sydow) to conduct an inquiry into the possibility of Jesus having been resurrected, and to spy on the misrule of Pontius Pilate (Hristo Shopov). On arrival he finds a city in turmoil, which sounds pretty believable, and he proceeds to find and interview all the usual suspects among Jesus’s followers. Treating the story like a Hercule Poirot investigation certainly makes it a lot more interesting than a straightforward telling would have. For the most part the acting, direction and production values are nothing special, though Liotti turns in a compelling central performance which holds it together and makes it watchable, and it manages to avoid the pitfall of becoming too preachy over it’s religious subject matter. ” - PeplumParadise
 
76.
Iron Warrior (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.5/10 X  
The Fighting Eagle returns again, sans Thong, to the legendary realm of Dragor to do battle with Phaedra... (82 mins.)
Director: Al Bradley
“ This, the third in the Ator series, sees Miles O’Keefe returning in the lead, but otherwise it’s all change, with director Alfonso Brescia making a belated return to the genre which launched his career 25 years earlier. Totally ignoring what has gone before and starting from scratch, we have the infant Ator being kidnapped by the witch Phaedra (Elisabeth Kaza) who is then conveniently banished for 18 years, at which point the film makers appear to have given up on plot altogether and decided to make an art film instead. O’Keefe does plenty of posing in fetish costumes, plaited ponytail and way too much blusher. There’s lots of odd nonsensical scenes involving witches, a princess with one pink eyebrow, an evil lord with a metal skull mask, dwarves dressed in black cloaks, etc. There’s also an abundance of colour filters, coloured smoke, neon tubes, female nudity, strange hairdos, arty photography from odd angles, some lovely scenery, pointless sword and spear fights and the barest minimum of dialogue. The end result is an attractive load of total nonsense, pretty to have on in the background, but otherwise a waste of time. ” - PeplumParadise
 
77.
La guerra del ferro: Ironmaster (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  
A tale that takes place at the dawn of history. The movie tells the story of a tribe that discovers... (90 mins.)
“ This is a pretty standard caveman peplum centering on the rivalry between good blonde Ela (Sam Pasco, a lean muscled Roger Daltrey lookalike in his only film appearance) and evil dark-haired Vood (George Eastman) to become leader of their tribe. Like pretty much all films set in pre-historic times the majority of time is spent here hunting and being hunted by animals (hogs, buffalos, lions, men in gorilla suits), chasing big-haired women, avoiding natural disasters and fighting other tribes and each other. You really would have hoped for better from Umberto Lenzi, who, before he became one of the most notorious names in the exploitation market, had started out helming a dozen or so middling sixties peplums. There are no rubber dinosaurs and the dialogue is English as opposed to the usual grunts, but that aside there’s nothing to really recommend this. ” - PeplumParadise
 
78.
“ Wanted! ” - PeplumParadise
 
79.
The King's Whore (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Set in the 17th-century, an Italian nobleman weds an impoverished countess, who is wooed by the King of Piedmont and faces pressure from his entire court to succumb to his wishes. (138 mins.)
Director: Axel Corti
“ This is an opulent production, rather neglected just 20 years after it’s production with only full frame DVD versions available for the fans. Timothy Dalton plays King Vittorio Amedeo of Piedmont, and once you get over the shock of seeing James Bond donning the wigs of 17th century nobility he turns in an effective and moving performance. The story concerns the King’s infatuation for an unwitting and unwilling newlywed countess in his court, Jeanne de Luynes (Valeria Golino – good but not great), to the point where his Kingdom falls as a result. The King makes her life a misery through his cruelty and obsession, aided by her family’s complicity and her husband’s inability to act in her defense. Eventually she is put under such pressure by the court that she has no alternative but to give in to his charms, but in gaining power she also sets about putting the country to rights and getting revenge on those who drove her to debase herself. Not quite a lost classic, but definitely deserving of a better reputation that the obscurity it currently enjoys. ” - PeplumParadise
 
80.
Kingdom of Gladiators (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 1.7/10 X  
A king makes a pact with an ancient demon and after years of ruling his kingdom in peace, the demon has come to collect. Now a group of rival gladiators must fight for the survival of the kingdom. (85 mins.)
Director: Stefano Milla
“ Well the ingredients here are a second time director/writer/producer/tea maker (whose previous feature was called Gladiator Games), a trio of wrestlers and an aging Englishman-none of whom have ever acted before, plus one well-seasoned B-movie starlet, two dozen extras who don’t seem to have been present on the same days as the “actors” and a castle in the Italian mountains which has obviously not seen human habitation for a long, long time. The story concerns a King Wolfkahn of Keemok (Bryan Murphy) who has made a pact with a demon to sacrifice his heirs in return for peace in his land. When his now very adult daughter Luna (Suzi Lorraine) returns to the castle he conveniently forgets the pact, and celebrates with possibly the most lack-lustre “tournament” ever seen, but it appears that Luna is not the innocent she pretends to be. At this point I’m not sure if I lost the plot or if they just gave up on it altogether. The wrestlers, sorry, “gladiators”, wander moodily around the countryside (one is revealed at some point to be Wolfkahn’s long lost son), often in slow motion, searching for a magic sword, beating each other up for no apparent reason and occasionally getting nonsense dialogue to speak unconvincingly. The wonderfully named Annie Social, one of the wrestlers, does look seriously scary. The only good thing I can find to say about it is that the scenery looks lovely, but if I wanted that I’d search out a National Geographic documentary. My recommendation is to avoid at all costs because this is seriously *beep* and not in a good way. ” - PeplumParadise
 
81.
I cavalieri che fecero l'impresa (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
In 1271, five young knights journey to Thebes in Greece to recover the Sacred Shroud and deliver it back to France and into the hands of the royal family. (147 mins.)
Director: Pupi Avati
“ THE KNIGHTS OF THE QUEST

This is a throwback to old school peplums in that it features an international cast in an Italian production dubbed into English (or delete as appropriate) and way down the cast list finds a place for 60’s genre faces Loris Loddi, Claudio Undari, and, in his final film appearance, Edmund Purdom. Unfortunately the plot is some piffle about a bunch of incompetent knights going on a quest for a holy shroud with a rather ludicrous possession sub-plot. The young international leads are, without exception, dreadful (and dreadfully miscast), but considering the script they have to work with - at least in it’s English dubbed form - they can hardly shoulder all the blame. The film also contains sporadic examples of comical gore that are totally out of step with the tone of the film. While I went in with goodwill for this film because of it’s credentials, by the end I’m afraid I had none left. ” - PeplumParadise
 
82.
Il ladrone (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Caleb vive in Galilea ai tempi di Gesù e si arrabatta con qualche furtarello e facendosi passare per mago... (108 mins.)
 
83.
Lancelot of the Lake (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A million miles away from 'Camelot' or 'Excalibur', this film ruthlessly strips the Arthurian legend down to its barest essentials... (85 mins.)
Director: Robert Bresson
“ I probably shouldn’t have been surprised to find the tale of Arthur (Vladimir Antolek-Oresek) and Lancelot (Luc Simon) told from a French perspective, given that the latter was indeed French, but it still comes as a shock to see the nation whom Monty Python portrayed as farting in the general direction of Arthur’s knights now portraying those same characters. This deals with the period following Lancelot’s return from his failed quest for the holy grail, his rivalry with Mordred (Bernhard), and his doomed love for Guinevere (Laura Duke Concominas). Unfortunately it is all dealt with in a very serious and humourless manner, with no action whatsoever, and played by a cast so devoid of emotion that they may as well be a troop of zombies. For Arthurian completists only. ” - PeplumParadise
 
84.
“ THE LAST DECAMERON: ADULTERY IN 7 EASY LESSONS

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
85.
The Last Legion (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
As the Roman empire crumbles, young Romulus Augustus flees the city and embarks on a perilous voyage to Britain to track down a legion of supporters. (102 mins.)
Director: Doug Lefler
“ Mildly enjoyable post-Gladiator telling of the largely unfamiliar Roman origins of the legend of Excalibur. The tone and performances are kept sensibly light and the location filming (Slovakia, Tunisia, UK) is attractive. Standout in the cast is Bollywood goddess Aishwarya Rai, who is a revelation as an action heroine. Ben Kingsley, on the other hand, in the role of Merlin with one of the oddest accents ever heard, is so hammy as to be annoyingly distracting. The film holds the interest for a while but does tend to drag after you realise that nothing much is really happening. ” - PeplumParadise
 
86.
Leonor (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
A female vampire rises from her crypt every night in search of children as her victims. (101 mins.)
“ To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
87.
I leoni di Pietroburgo (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
The story is about two rivals during the Russian Revolution. (98 mins.)
Director: Mario Siciliano
“ LIONS OF ST. PETERSBURG ” - PeplumParadise
 
88.
The Loves and Times of Scaramouche (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  
The adventures of a cad in Napoleonic times. (95 mins.)
“ THE LOVES AND TIMES OF SCARAMOUCHE

This is an enjoyable light hearted romp with forgotten seventies face Michael Sarrazin as the title character, who here would be hard to tell apart from Casanova. While it only occasionally reaches laugh out loud level, the comedic action barely ever lets up pace and you get swept along. There are two crazed central performances from Aldo Maccione as Napoleon and Damir Mejovsek as a Russian general which are worth the price of admission alone, plus sixties peplum regular Salvatore Borghese is in there too as an assassin out to kill Napoleon. Oh, there’s also second billed Ursula Andress who doesn’t put in an appearance until the 55 minute mark, then wastes no time getting her tits out and getting slapped around (she starts it). Slightly better than average for this sort of thing. ” - PeplumParadise
 
89.
Lucrezia giovane (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
Simonetta Stefanelli stars as Lucrezia Borgia in Luciano Ercoli's version of the early life of this fascinating historical persona... (80 mins.)
Director: André Colbert
“ The incestuous intrigues of the Borgia family were a natural for a makeover in the sinful seventies, and, although it was eclipsed at the box office by the same year’s Immoral Tales, this is easily the best of the several that appeared. This manages to largely overcome it’s budgetary restrictions and is one of the more watchable of the peplum-porn sub-genre – a feat achieved by attractive photography, keeping it’s soft-core breasts ‘n’ buttocks romps tasteful and by avoiding the pitfall of cheap humour which soured most similar productions of the time. It was common for these productions to rope in a few old time genre stars to lend them some credibility, and here you find two of the best with Ettore Manni as Rodrigo Borgia, Pope Alessandro VI and Piero Lulli as Ludovico Sforza, both of whom turn in professional performances amidst the goings-on around them. Massimo Foschi is effective as jealous brother Cesare Borgia, while Godfather starlet and Playboy model Simonetta Stefanelli is attractive and frequently naked in the title role as slutty sister Lucrezia. While by no means a classic, there’s enough overwrought melodrama here to satisfy those who require it, with enough tasteful nudity and a smattering of gore for those who don’t. ” - PeplumParadise
 
91.
Mad Love (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
The love story who transformed Juana, Queen of Spain, into Juana "The mad". A story of passions, lies and jealousy with a politic fight behind. (115 mins.)
Director: Vicente Aranda
“ Mad Love ” - PeplumParadise
 
92.
Magnificat (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
During the Middle Ages, a traveling executioner hires an apprentice to learn the finer points of torture and execution, and a young girl is given by her parents to a Catholic convent. (95 mins.)
Director: Pupi Avati
 
93.
Il magnifico Robin Hood (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  
(84 mins.)
“ THE MAGNIFICENT ROBIN HOOD

To be reviewed ” - PeplumParadise
 
94.
The Maidens' Conspiracy (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.0/10 X  
Tirante the knight is as committed to fighting the Turks in Constantinople as he is to relieving Carmesina, the heiress to the Byzantine Empire, of her virginity. (122 mins.)
Director: Vicente Aranda
“ If beautiful costumes and stunning locations were all it took to make a classic film then this would be one. Unfortunately films generally also need an interesting script, equally captivating performances, and for something… anything to happen occasionally, and on these points this film is lacking. The movie, based on a famous Spanish love story, is very slow, almost dreamlike, obviously intentionally. This of itself isn’t a bad thing, but unfortunately the central character of a knight named Bribante, as played by Casper Zafer, is dull as dishwater, spending the whole movie wandering round in a trance. This makes it very difficult to see why beautiful Princess Carmesina (Esther Nubiola) would find him the slightest bit interesting, and it’s also difficult to take him seriously as a champion knight on the battlefield. A smattering of supporting turns from celebrity “names” fail to add much to the proceedings, but the central conspiracy, while not terribly well handled, still holds a “dangerous liasons” type of fascination. Pretty to look at then, but rather tiresome. ” - PeplumParadise
 
95.
Mark of Zorro (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
Il misterioso Zorro, intervenuto per impedire le nozze tra Carmen e Marcel, nel compiere la solita acrobatica e strategica ritirata... (97 mins.)
“ MARK OF ZORRO ” - PeplumParadise
 
96.
Marquise (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
The rise and fall of a beauteous actress. She rises from an impoverished background to become a favorite of the Sun King, Louis XIV. (120 mins.)
Director: Véra Belmont
 
97.
I padroni del mondo (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  
Set two hundred thousand years ago, when the human race had to adapt to their brutal savage environment or disappear into oblivion. For Bog, the great warrior this struggle means conquering the Earth and gaining supremacy over his rivals. (100 mins.)
“ MASTER OF THE WORLD

Well the Americans gave us Caveman and Clan Of the Cave Bear, the French gave us Quest For Fire and the Italians – never ones to let a budding trend go un-ripped-off – gave us this, their entry in the dead-on-its-feet grunts-for-dialogue caveman genre. Basically it’s a bunch of people dressed in mangy furs and matted wigs running around in the hills grunting at each other for 100 minutes. There is no discernable storyline, a little fake-looking gore and brain eating, some random animal footage, a rather grumpy bear, some Goblin-alike electronic music and that’s about it. One to avoid since the novelty wears off after about the first 2 minutes. ” - PeplumParadise
 
98.
The Merchant of Venice (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
In 16th century Venice, when a merchant must default on a large loan from an abused Jewish moneylender for a friend with romantic ambitions, the bitterly vengeful creditor demands a gruesome payment instead. (131 mins.)
Director: Michael Radford
“ This worthy attempt at one of Shakespeare’s least cinematically friendly plays is probably as good as one could have hoped for, given the total lack of sympathetic characters it contains. Al Pacino, in the central role of Shylock, turns in a masterful performance and grips the attention whenever he is on screen, particularly in the pivotal climatic courtroom scene. The supporting players are far less effective, particularly the women, and the chances to make attractive use of the authentic Venetian locations are largely wasted, as are potential opportunities to open up into more cinematic settings. Worth a viewing if you are at all curious, though solely for Pacino’s presence, but otherwise it veers dangerously close to dull. ” - PeplumParadise
 
99.
Messalina, Messalina (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  
(100 mins.)
Director: Bruno Corbucci
“ This was filmed using the sets and costumes left over from Caligula and starring two of the Penthouse pets from that film, so looks a lot better than any cheap sex comedy has any right to-in fact it actually looks better than Caligula and you get to see more of the sets and costumes. The humour is broad, crude, badly dubbed and not very funny, while the sex is broad, crude, badly dubbed, not very erotic, and also in rather short supply given the film’s credentials. The “story” involves nymphomaniac Empress Messalina (Anneka Di Lorenzo), wife of Claudius (Vittorio Caprioli), looking for men with big cocks to satisfy her constant craving behind her husbands back. The bloodbath ending is surprisingly funny and a welcome relief. ” - PeplumParadise
 
100.
Michael the Brave (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
At the end of the 16th century Wallachian ruler Prince Michael the Brave overcame the adversity of the Ottoman and Austrian Empires to unite Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania into one country. (203 mins.)
“ This is a massive production, even in it’s truncated international release form (it originally came in 2 parts at over 4 hours), from the director of Dacii, detailing the battles and intrigues which led to the amalgamation of the three countries which make up modern Romania in the 16th century with clearly no expense spared on any aspect of production. It’s filmed in a naturalistic style and looks amazing, utilising the Romanian army for the massive battle scenes, with a compelling central performance from Amza Pellea as “Michael The Brave” and the supporting players equally well chosen. The English release is disgustingly butchered by over two hours, so it’s pretty amazing that in this form it makes any sense at all, but while somewhat confusing and missing in character development it is still an amazing achievement and compelling viewing, and I look forward to expanding this review once I have obtained an uncut print. This film has a quite fascinating production history which would be worthy of it’s own movie. ” - PeplumParadise