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From the fertile imagination which brought you the irresistible
HERCULES (1983), comes its even more preposterous (read goofier)
sequel: right off the bat, we get another unwieldy "beginning of time"
prologue which even contrives to completely contradict these same
events as set up in the first film!; a condensed montage of highlights
from same is soon followed by a SUPERMAN-like scrolling credits
sequence. Narrative-wise, here we have four rebellious gods who steal
Zeus' seven all-important (but poorly animated) thunderbolts a crime
which, for one thing, sets the moon careening on a collision course
with Planet Earth! Faster than you can say "nepotism", Zeus (once again
played as a white-haired bearded man by the relatively young Claudio
Cassinelli) sends his champion who has now rightfully taken his place
among the elite thanks to, one presumes, the almighty tasks performed
in the first film to find his blooming thunderbolts and avert the
calamities in store.
No sooner has Hercules (Lou Ferrigno as if you didn't know) touched the earthly surface that he comes in contact with two attractive damsels (Milly Carlucci and Sonia Viviani) in need of his getting them out of distress!; the former (who would go on to become an Italian TV personality) seemingly has the ability to talk with the Little People(!) which look uncannily like the tiny sisters from GODZILLA VS. MOTHRA (1964)!! Just so they can swindle as much unutilzed footage from the first film as is humanly possible, the divine quartet of villains resurrect good ol' King Minos (William Berger again) from his skeletal slumber and pit him once more against his eternal enemy. Typically, Hercules is made to encounter a number of potentially deadly foes including a Gorgon an awfully underproduced sequence which ought to have led to a surefire plagiarism suit had the film-makers behind the much superior CLASH OF THE TITANS (1981) bothered to watch this flick (complete with the same "reflection in a shield" come-uppance and preceded by the muscleman letting the audience in on his tactics before executing them as if to show us how clever he is)!! And just to make it crystal clear that he wears his influences on his sleeve, Cozzi has Hercules and Minos turn into a cosmic version of "King Kong vs. Godzilla" for one of their battles and later still, Hercules gets to grips with a large snake, an encounter lifted straight out of the classic 1933 original. I swear it: this is the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
As had been the case with the first film, the cast is full of old reliables like the afore-mentioned Berger, Cassinelli and Venantino Venantini (as a sorcerer with a truly bad hair day) and up-and-coming starlets not just Carlucci but also Maria Rosaria Omaggio (as a younger Hera!), Serena Grandi, Pamela Prati and, once again, Eva Robbins (whose costume here easily outcamps her appearance in the first film); for what it's worth, Pino Donaggio's score for this one is recycled from musical cues featured in his soundtrack for the previous film. If you have stuck with this review so far, you must have realized by now that this is one of those movies that is so unbelievably bad that a reviewer is forced to choose which course to take: either dismiss it in one unflattering sentence or spend an undeserving amount of time dissecting its flaws. I'm sure I've left out some of its ineptitudes but I wouldn't forgive myself if I failed to mention the single greatest laugh-out loud instance in the whole movie which almost made me fall off my chair (yes, it even surpassed the afore-mentioned animated titanic duel for me), namely the décor of the rebellious gods' lair which is in the shape of a giant marble kettle!!
At this stage, one might well wonder why I gave this film (and its predecessor) a rating instead of a (not entirely unjustified) BOMB; in the past, I've had various protracted online discussions on whether one's star rating of any particular film should reflect the overall artistic quality or its sheer entertainment value but these are two instances where I deemed it necessary to be consciously influenced by the latter in settling on my final rating. I don't know: maybe it's because I'm in a "sword-and-sandal" state-of-mind at the moment (with some 10 more respectable examples scheduled for the coming days!) but, after all, uncharacteristically for me, I decided to add these two films to my DVD collection simply based on the fun I had with them in this recent revisit and that alone must count for something, no?
Boy, do I strongly disagree with the other commentators on this movie! This is a terrific example of a film that is so over the top, so loaded with wacky ideas, so determinedly wrong, that it is thoroughly entertaining. The outrageous dialog, deadpan or hammy acting and glowing tinker toy special effects alone make it worth watching; add outlandish costumes, a story that makes no sense, and references to (one might uncharitably say rip-offs of) everything from "King Kong" to "Star Wars", and how can you lose? When I watch a sword and sandal movie, I want beautiful babes, a musclebound hero, and monsters: "The Adventures of Hercules" has all of this and so much more! Lou Ferrigno may not be Steve Reeves or Gordon Scott, but as Hercules, he's vastly preferable to Kevin Sorbo. So, I have to give this unacknowledged classic an "8". If you liked "Hercules Against the Moonmen you'll love this!
Lou Ferrigno returns once again in this demented sequel to Luiggi
Cozzi's earlier film; And believe it or not, this one is even more
brazenly stupid than its predecessor! - Yes, I kid thee not! This time,
our hero Herc is called back to earth on a perilous mission to retrieve
Zeus's seven magic thunderbolts which have been stolen by some renegade
Gods. Aiding our hero is a pretty, busty heroine who bears an uncanny
resemblance to pop princess Kylie Minogue(!) - so much so in fact, that
during one particular scene, I could have sworn I was watching the
video to 'I should be so lucky'.
Um....anyway, in order to collect each of the thunderbolts, our man must first slay each of the monsters 'housing' them. But by gum, if this wasn't bad enough, Herc only has a limited amount of time to complete the task for, due to the cosmic imbalance caused by the absence of the thunderbolts in the heavens, the moon is now on a collision course for earth!!! Yes, the pressure is very much on and wouldn't you know it - just to add EVEN MORE to problems, King Minos from the first film is resurrected - a villain with an especial grudge against our hero after he defeated him previously.
Like its dopey forerunner, this effort makes the monumental mistake of combining ill thought out sci-fi elements with Greek myths - the end result being a bizarre mess and one rife for ridicule. Having said this however, such ridicule is of course the very reason to watch this in the first place; Yes, this is a gloriously bad film which goes down well with excessive alcohol intake.
Best/worst scenes? God, there's so many to poke fun at but undoubtedly the daftest is the final fight between Herc and Minos which takes place in space(!) and during which, both combatants transform themselves into cosmic manifestations i.e. poor looking animations! Bizarrely for reasons best known to himself, Minos transforms into a dinosaur(!) to which our hero immediately responds by transforming himself into a cosmic gorilla(!) Words sadly can't do this utterly ridiculous scene sufficient justice - you simply have to see it to believe it.
Yes, this is a truly terrible film, no two ways about it, but it is however quiet a hoot and is essential viewing for all self respecting bad movie lovers.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Although coming after three Star Wars, Krull & countless others, this
movie would look outdated in the 1950s... 1 SFX mostly consist of 1970s
videogames effects such as bolts etc; annoying after a short while. You
also get a SFX creature that looks like a poor man's version of some
tier-IV Harryhausen monster.
2 sets are mainly ruins in the countryside, with papier-mache temples and miniature cities or abodes that makes 1950s Japanese monster movies look like flawless perfection.
3 Plot is paper extra-thin...Hercules must find Zeus' seven golden thunderbolts stolen by conspiring gods & zombie tyrants.
4 action mainly consists in retarded, muscled-up Hercules ( check the variety of facial expressions ) wrestling cheap 1970s videogames effects.
5 acting award goes to Milly Carlucci (third Carlucci show-biz sister with Anna & Gabriella ), which says all.
6 SFX make other tier-II Italian salad bowl movies such as L'UMANOIDE & STAR CRASH look like masterpieces.
Well, considering that Ferrigno's main acting exploit consisted in impersonating a retarded green monster, wearing a whig and green espadrillas, we ought to be lenient.
Watch it & forget about it.
"Great deeds make us immortal." - "We can't all be so fortunate." Indeed, so this didn't help anyone's career, I presume. Assisted by two young ladies (Milly Carlucci, Sonia Viviani), Hercules looks for the lost 7 thunderbolts of Zeus. One for example is hidden inside an electric fire monster he must hit on the head to cause a short circuit. Hercules flies around in space a lot (this is after all a movie by the director of "Star Crash") and beats monsters painted by a five year old: Rotoscoping at its worst. The only thing I missed in the 80s video game look was a "Game over" text insert. The gods are beamed to Earth in a flash of green light with a squeaking electronic noise. Glowing shapes that reminded me of advertising for washing powder (cleaning ghosts or something like that) attack Hercules, men in rotten rubber costumes do the same - the adversaries look a lot cheaper than those in the first movie which was already abysmal. This sequel is less fun because it is less ambitious. The huge pathos of the first movie, trying to be monumental, is what made it so funny. Here, it's just a quick rehash, much less entertaining.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Strong and courageous Hercule (a stiff, yet sincere performance by Lou Ferrigno and two insanely hot babes -- tender psychic Urania (the delicious Milly Carlucci) and feisty Glaucia (the equally delectable Sonia Viviani) -- must retrieve Zeus' seven stolen thunderbolts and thwart an attempted coup by four rebellious gods. Meanwhile, the evil and vengeful King Minos (a gloriously hammy William Berger) gets resurrected so he can settle a score with Hercules. Writer/director Luigi Cozzi once again strikes out something rotten with often sidesplitting kitschy results: the supremely asinine script (among the perils Hercules faces are a hostile upright humanoid shag rug, yucky slime people, and a tribe of ferocious Amazon women, plus we get an unnecessary recap of the creation of the universe!), liberal use of stock footage from the first flick, subpar (far from) special effects, the ludicrously serious tone, an absurdly solemn narrator, dippy 80's video game style sound effects, terrible dubbing, crummy acting (Claudio Cassinelli as a decidedly unimpressive Zeus cops the top thespic booby prize; he resembles a bargain basement Santa Claus with his laughably fake white beard and wig!), ham-fisted use of strenuous slow motion, cheesy excessive rotoscoping, and a simply astounding climactic confrontation between Hercules and King Minos in outer space (Herc turns into a giant gorilla while Minos transforms into a savage dinosaur!) all add immensely to the considerable unintentional hilarity. Pino Donaggio supplies an exceptionally lively and stirring full-on orchestral score. Alberto Spagnoli's slick cinematography gives the movie a blindingly garish Day-Glo shine. A complete campy hoot.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The Adventures of Hercules has to be one of the lamest excuses for a
movie I've yet run across. You would have to look far and wide to find
anything that approaches the level of ineptness on display in this
movie. Acting Bad. Editing Bad. Direction Bad. Special Effects
Bad and Laughable. Plot Bad. Lighting Bad. Cinematography Bad.
Costume Design Bad and Silly. Everything Else Bad. Watching The
Adventures of Hercules is about as enjoyable as a root canal. Even for
a fan of bad movies, it's a real endurance test. This is one for either
masochists or Lou Ferrigno completists (if any exist).
Eight things I learned from watching The Adventures of Hercules:
1. If you don't have the budget for real special effects, rotoscope a scene from the previous movie. It will look great - trust me.
2. When on a quest to recover Zeus' thunderbolts, take time for frequent stops to oil-up you body. It worked for Ferrigno and his two Amazon companions.
3. Any sword fight, use of magic, and just about all other day to day activities in ancient Greece created a sound very similar to a game of Pac Man or Asteroids.
4. Some of the ancient Greek gods dressed like extras from Star Wars.
5. If you need to pad your crappy movie's runtime, extend the title sequence by adding Star Trek style credits and throw in some overly grandiose music. It also helps if you've got a previous movie to pull scenes from.
6. Fight scenes move along much smoother if the bad guys attack Hercules one at a time.
7. William Berger did anything for money.
8. I didn't think it was possible, but The Adventures of Hercules makes the first film, Hercules (1983), look like an Academy Award winner.
More cheesy badly-dubbed greatness from Cannon. This sequel to the
classic Hercules has our hero and his humongous pectorals out to
recover Zeus' stolen thunderbolts. To do this he must fight guys in
ghillie suits and creatures created with poor computer and stop-motion
effects. A full day's work for Herc.
Lou Ferrigno is certainly a physical sight to behold and his stone-serious facial expressions at all times makes the movie that much more hilarious because it does not deserve to be taken seriously in the least. Unfortunately, sexy Sybil Danning does not return from the first movie but there are still some scantily-clad Italian babes to feast your eyes on. The special effects are cheap but charmingly so. Love the obsession with neon. The stop-motion Medusa appears to be made from Play-Doh. Lots of bad but quotable lines coming from voices that are clearly not those of the actors. Look, it's glorious garbage of a movie but there's a good deal of fun to be had laughing at it. I'll take unintended entertainment over no entertainment any day.
In yet another brain-frying exercise in special effects, glistening
pecs, and men without kecks, Lou Ferrigno must this time track down
seven thunderbolts that have been stolen from Zeus by Hera and some of
her buddies, but don't try thinking about the plot because I tried that
and am not sure of my kid's names any longer. Hmm. Shame.
What's not a shame is Luigi Cozzi letting loose that crazy imagination of his in and epic avalanche of insane cosmology. Want nearly every scene in the film full of those cartoony eighties effects? Then this is your film (and so is the first one too).
After Herc has pummeled quite a few weird monsters into submission, I was kind of worried that he had by that point only thrown one thing into space, but luckily for me Luigi set the entire last act in space! Also, the madness continued until my wife asked "Why is Godzilla fighting King Kong in space?" Words cannot convey that scene.
This one stars Venantino Venantini (City of the Living Dead, Seven Deaths in the Cats eye - check out his crazy wig!), William Berger (Dial Help, Strike Commando), Claudio Cassineli (Mountain of the Cannibal God, What have they Done to Your daughters), Margit Newton (Zombie Creeping Flesh, The Final Executioner) and Maria Rosaria Ommagio (Nightmare City, The Cop in Blue Jeans).
You don't need gore or boobs for a good Italian film, if this film had that, the world would truly explode or perhaps just fly about the places like it does in this film.
This cheap-jack follow-up to Luigi Cozzi "Hercules" is just as goofy
and tacky, maybe even more than its predecessor. Actually it is. No
doubts. Again the clunky sci-fi elements (for science!) finds its way
into the Greek mythical adventure
which means good times ahead ("He
uses science against godly powers"). That's belly-laughs. Lou Ferrigno
returns as Hercules, again bringing the fitting qualities for the role
and also being resurrected is King Minos who's played with even more
energy again by scene chewing William Berger. Their final climatic
showdown has to be seen to be believed
it might be lousy in the
outcome, but the light-show (filled with a snake, dinosaur and gorilla)
it bestows is bewilderingly stupid. But in the end, this is its charm.
Simply the story follows Hercules being sent to earth to retrieve the Seven Thunderbolts of Zeus, which have been stolen by renegade gods. There he must face certain challenges, while also dealing with an old nemesis King Minos and racing against time as the earth and moon are on a collision course.
Everything here is junky and ludicrous with vividly low-rent set designs, clumsy, but bright optical effects with trip-out side-effects, lame sound effects and eccentric plotting with devious scheming. It's one set-piece after another, as monsters and obstacles enter the fame throughout the journey. Some of these challenges are not much of one, but others are more so. However there's always a laugh there either way. Be it the encounters with the cheap make-up FX, random dramatics and the funny, no frill dialogues. The short running time makes it easier to enjoy, Pino Donaggio composes again by chipping in with another barnstorming music score and director Luigi Cozzi's ham-handed, but physical approach really outdoes itself.
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