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The Witch's Curse (1962)

Maciste all'inferno (original title)
Maciste travels to Hell to find a witch and make her undo a curse she put on the surface world.


(as Robert Hampton)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Hélène Chanel ...
Vira Silenti ...
Martha Gaunt
Angelo Zanolli ...
Charley Law
Andrea Bosic ...
Judge Parris
Donatella Mauro
Gina Mascetti ...
Antonella Della Porta ...
John Karlsen ...
Antonio Ciani
Pietro Ceccarelli ...
Goliath (as Puccio Ceccarelli)
Remo De Angelis ...
Evar Maran ...
Charles Fawcett ...
John Francis Lane ...
Coachman (as Francis Lane)


Maciste travels to Hell to find a witch and make her undo a curse she put on the surface world.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


After the fires of Hades and frenzied attacks by ferocious beasts, there remained only the venom of 'The Witch's Curse'


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Release Date:

November 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Witch's Curse  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


This was the third, and last, Maciste film produced by Panda. See more »


After Maciste kills the lion in Hell, one of the lion's eyes blink. See more »


[first lines]
Judge Parrish: [reading] In the name of the king of Scotland, and with the authority as conferred upon me, I, Edgar Parris, justice supreme of Loch Laird of the kingdom of Scotland, on this, the first day of November year of grace 1515...
Fania: [in the form of the old Martha Gaunt] Curse you!
Judge Parrish: ...condemn hereby to be burned alive the sorceress...
Fania: Malediction!
Judge Parrish: ...Martha Gaunt for witchcraft.
Fania: Curse you all!
Judge Parrish: This woman, with her evil match, having had communion with the devil and other malignant spirits, has...
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Featured in Shiver & Shudder Show (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

If you haven't seen the uncut version, you haven't seen it
5 October 2008 | by (the rock) – See all my reviews

I saw a version of MACISTE IN HELL under the boneheaded title of THE WITCH'S CURSE. That version was OK but nothing really remarkable. While watching the film, I realized it was cut down to pieces, that I wasn't watching the original version but even so I thought, meh. Lo and behold, I got a hold of the original uncut Italian version in beautiful crystal clear widescreen and the difference was WOW!

MACISTE IN HELL is, suffice to say, a Peplum masterpiece. It's a stand-out S&S remake of the silent version, which, obviously doesn't look anything like this 1962 version. Aside from a few weak points and an ending that doesn't rise to the occasion, the rest is a visual masterpiece directed by maestro Riccardo Freda. 15 minutes were cut for the US version, THE WITCH'S CURSE, and those 15 minutes make a HUGE difference. What looked like amateur night suddenly looks like a super smooth atmospheric classic fantasy filled with at times jaw dropping visuals. By cutting those 15 minutes, the careful pacing and mood was destroyed/eliminated and what was left was a clunky simplistic adventure.

The film is, first and foremost, an atmospheric film. There's almost no plot and the film follows a lone Mascite (played to uber beefcake perfection by Kirk Morris, aka Adriano Bellini) going from one feat to another. In other words, except for the intro, the dialogue is minimal. Even the Scottish scenes, which looked somehow out of place and silly in THE WITCH'S CURSE suddenly look just right in the uncut version. The contrast between the somber gray, colorless prison setting with the colorful, eye-filling world of Hell is remarkable. Having Maciste appear almost out of nowhere half-naked in Scotland suddenly makes sense with the expanded scenes that show Maciste as some sort of Hero who's not bound by time and space, thanks mainly to stock footage taken from ATLAS IN THE LAND OF THE CYCLOPS, SAMSON AND THE 7 MIRACLES OF THE WORLD and MACISTE IN THE VALLEY OF THE KINGS (SON OF SAMSON).

This film looks so good in its original state that they should re-release it on the big-screen. It would be like seeing an all new film. Some might find some of the effects risible, like when Maciste fights with a giant, but I think they just add to the surreal aspects of an adventure that takes place in Hell. But there are several standout, beautifully realized effect scenes that would wow current moviegoers including a trail of flames following Maciste's footsteps, Maciste's walk through a landscape of damned people or Maciste holding a boulder over his head to protect him from a shower of flames. The latter is the film's highlight.

It's also a very sensual film. It's not just a standard S&S action film but it's a film of the senses. The way Kirk Morris (and Helene Chanel) is shot, the cave settings, the music, all add up to a wonderful experience that often transcends its Peplum root. In essence, the story is about Maciste, who represents spiritual and physical purity and how primordial it is for his spirit and (his clearly exposed) body to remain pure amidst all the temptations or dangers around him, such as Fania or whatever attacks him and tries to kill him. This new angle to a familiar story is, for a film made in 1962, cool and somewhat daring.

The uncut version of MACISTE IN HELL is a classic fantasy waiting to be re-discovered. It's a must see for fans of Peplum or any genre films.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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