In this melange of characters and events from separate mythological stories, Hercules, demigod and superman, arrives in the ancient Greek kingdom of Iolcus to tutor Iphitus, son of king Pelias; immediately on arrival, he falls in love with the king's delectable, briefly clad daughter Iole. Before he can win her, he must succeed in a series of quests, in the course of which he teams up with Jason, true heir of Iolcus, whom he accompanies on the famous voyage of the Argonauts. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
The film was passed over by the major U.S. distributors. An employee of MGM told former exhibitor Joseph E. Levine about it, and Levine flew to Italy to see it. He liked what he saw and acquired the U.S. rights. It became a smash hit and started the craze for Italian-made muscleman spectacles. See more »
After killing the lion and dropping it to the ground, the dead lion blinks. See more »
Immense and immortal was the strength of Hercules, like the world and the gods to whom he belonged... Yet from letter men he learned one eternal truth - that even the greatest strength carries within it a measure of mortal weaknes...
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A triumph of exploitation cinema and a fondly-remembered genre groundbreaker.
Joseph E. Levine's timing when he decided to capitalize on this low-budget Italian epic was so right that it has become a legendary example of film promotion. That aside, it's amazing still how the dynamic image of Steve Reeves and a multimillion dollar saturation campaign was able to make this one of the most profitable films of it's time. That bad word of mouth didn't kill this picture's boxoffice only goes to show you that kitsch can be appreciated when it delivers, and HERCULES is colossal kitsch that delivers sensational, fetishistic, sexist spectacle in it's cheapest, most primitive form. Tastelessly tasteful.
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