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Hercules Unchained (1959)
"Ercole e la regina di Lidia" (original title)

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Ratings: 4.2/10 from 1,405 users  
Reviews: 37 user | 36 critic

While negotiating peace between two brothers contesting the throne of Thebes, an amnesiac Hercules is seduced by the evil Queen Omphale.

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Title: Hercules Unchained (1959)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Sylvia Lopez ...
Queen Onfale, of Lidia
Patrizia Della Rovere ...
Primo Carnera ...
Carlo D'Angelo ...
Creonte, High Priest of Thebes
Gabriele Antonini ...
Cesare Fantoni ...
Mimmo Palmara ...
Polinices
Andrea Fantasia ...
Aldo Fiorelli ...
Gino Mattera ...
Aldo Pini ...
Tifi, Pilot of the Argos
Nino Marchetti ...
Fossore
Daniele Vargas ...
Anfiarao
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Storyline

En route to Thebes for an important diplomatic mission, Hercules drinks from a magic spring and loses his memory. He spends most of the movie in the pleasure gardens of Queen Omphale of Lydia. While young Ulysses tries to help him regain his memory, political tensions escalate in Thebes, and Hercules' new wife Iole finds herself in mortal danger. Written by Molly Malloy <mailcall@bluemarble.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Spectacles of Massive Might Beyond Any Ever Known Before! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

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Release Date:

13 July 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hercules Unchained  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(2005 DVD release) | (re-release)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Antaeus, who dwarfs even Steve Reeves, was the final character played by former world heavyweight boxing champion Primo Carnera. See more »

Goofs

Watch closely the second time Hercules takes up Ulysses' challenge to bend the iron torch stand in an attempt to remember who he is. He successfully does so, and then unbends it just as easily, leaving a slight curve in the stem. However when he returns the stand to its original location, the stand is perfectly straight. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Nutcracker (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Evening Star
Music by Enzo Masetti
Lyrics by Mitchell Parish
Sung by Sylva Koscina (dubbed by June Valli in the English version)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Spectacular Greek adventure with the muscle man hero Hercules-Steve Reeves
11 July 2010 | by See all my reviews

The movie opens with the musclebound mythical Hercules ( Steve Reeves ), his recent wife Iole ( Sylva Koscina), and the young Ulysses (Gabriel Antonini) setting off for the city of Thebes , continuing the end of the quest for the Golden Fleece (depicted in the former picture , Hercules , that was essentially a recounting of the tale of Jason and the Argonauts). Their trip is interrupted when Hercules must do battle with the giant Anteus (Primo Carnera), whose strength seems to exceed his own until he realizes that Anteus is the son of the earth goddess, Gea, and can't be defeated on land. On their arrival in Thebes, the trio discovers that the kingdom is in the midst of civil war , Oedipus (Cesare Fantoni), the blind old king, is dying, and his two sons, Polynices (Mimmo Palmara) and Eteocles (Sergio Fantoni), are confronting for the throne and threatening to destroy each other and the populace. Hercules must leave Iole in the hands of one side in order to try and settle the dispute between the two would-be kings. While en route between the two armed camps, however, he is put under the spell of Omphale (Sylvia Lopez), the Queen of Lydia .Hercules drinks from a magic spring and lost his records , then the Queen casts out his memory , is seduced and tangles him as a lover , in addition Ulysses in tow pretending to be his deaf-mute servant. Ulysses must figure out how to keep himself alive, restore Hercules' record, get them both out of Omphale's grasp before she tires of amnesiac Hercules and has him killed , and get them both back to Thebes before the kingdom is burned to the ground. His solution arrives in the form of his father, Laertes ( Andrea Fantasia ), and Hercules' companions as Argo (Aldo Fiorelli) the shipbuilder and the Argonauts from his voyage for the Golden Fleece. They all escape Omphale's clutches and arrive at Thebes where the political tensions raise as war has broken out between the Edipo's sons and their armies , furthermore his new spouse finds herself in mortal risk . In a breathtaking denouement, Hercules brings his chariot into the middle of the thunderous fighting , knocking down assault towers and sweeping cavalry before him to halt the battle.

This mythological movie is plenty of adventures , emotions, thrills , atmospheric settings and colorful scenarios well photographed by the maestro Mario Bava . The plot this time is drawn from the legends surrounding the royal house of Thebes, which are most familiar to audiences through the Theban plays of Sophocles as Aedipus at Colonia and Seven against Thebes by Aeschylus . It is widely considered to be one of the top 10 greatest Peplum films of all time. This great film will surely attract a whole new generation of classic movie fans. And for seasoned cinematic connoseuirs, Hercules Unchained (1959) will rekindle an era of film making at its best. This is Steve Reeves' second and last film portrayal of Hercules is, in certain ways, better than his first . For others who simply enjoy watching timeless pieces with icons such as Steve Reeves. The corpulent Steve Reeves was a hunk man who made lots of roman epic films also called ¨Musclemen movies¨. Luck's Reeves changed when Italian director Pietro Francisci persuaded him to go overseas to star ¨Hercules¨ and sequel ¨Hercules and queen of Lydia also titled Hercules unchained ¨ that served as the prototypes of all cloak-and-sandal movies to come and both of them became a surprise US hit smash . Later on, he followed with ¨Goliath and the Barbarians, The giant of Marathon, The Trojan horse, The son of Spartacus and The Avenger¨ among them . Steve was an American bouncing who emigrated Italy and created a true star-system based on pumped-up heroes. He paved the way for other actors to seek their fame and fortune in Italy playing bouncing adventurers . Other stars by the time on this type of movies are Mark Forest, Gordon Mitchell, Dan Vadis, Brad Harris and 'Gordon Scott' who made him more important competence. Nobody, nevertheless, topped Steve in popularity . Rating : Good , high recommended for Peplum fans


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