Review: THE LOVES OF HERCULES (1960)

Known internationally as HERCULES VS THE HYDRA, THE LOVES OF HERCULES is a 1960 adventure fantasy directed by Carlo Ludovico Bragaglia. The screenplay, such as it is, is by Luciano Doria. This Italian outing is mostly renowned for starring an expectant Jayne Mansfield and her then-husband Mickey Hargitay. The latter has the distinction of playing […]

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Review: GOLIATH AND THE DRAGON (1960)

Bodybuilder Mark Forest makes his acting debut in GOLIATH AND THE DRAGON, a 1960 adventure fantasy directed by Vittorio Cottafavi. This picture was intended as a Hercules film and was shot as such under the Italian title REVENGE OF HERCULES, but American International Pictures changed the titular character to Emilius/Goliath to tie in with GOLIATH […]

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Review: HERCULES UNCHAINED (1959)

Steve Reeves liberates himself in HERCULES UNCHAINED, a 1959 adventure picture directed by Pietro Francisci. This is the sequel to Francisci’s 1958 HERCULES, which introduced Reeves to the world as the titular character. His second and last appearance as the hero features a screenplay by Francisci and Ennio De Concini, with cinematography by Mario Bava. […]

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Review: HERCULES (1958)

The meaty heroism ruptures the screen in HERCULES, a 1958 adventure yarn directed by Pietro Francisci. Based on the mythology of the same name with a solid dose of Apollonius of Rhodes’ ARGONAUTICA thrown in for good measure, this picture set the stage for Italy’s peplum genre. It also established Steve Reeves as a powerful […]

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Review: ZOMBI 2 (1979)

The dead are living and fighting sharks in Lucio Fulci’s ZOMBI 2, an Italian zombie movie with a screenplay by Dardano Sacchetti. The film was designed as a sequel to DAWN OF THE DEAD, but there’s little-to-no connective tissue apart from what passes as food in the zombie kingdom. Fulci’s flick is of the shoestring […]

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Review: THE BEYOND (1981)

Another gate to hell is opened wide in Lucio Fulci’s THE BEYOND, an Italian horror film that seems at least obliquely related to his CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD. There are those who consider THE BEYOND the midpoint of a trilogy involving the 1980 outing and THE HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY, with rich thematic links […]

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Review: THE HOUSE ON SORORITY ROW (1983)

Mark Rosman’s THE HOUSE ON SORORITY ROW is a slasher that is more style than substance. That’s not necessarily a deal-breaker, as cinematographer Tim Suhrstedt does well to capture Rosman’s sensibilities by lining up some rather inventive shots and establishing some evocative motifs. The plot is boilerplate and the cast isn’t distinct, but the sumptuous […]

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Review: CRY OF THE BANSHEE (1970)

Gordon Hessler helms CRY OF THE BANSHEE, an uncanny but convoluted horror flick from American International Pictures. This 1970 outing does have several things going for it, including an incredible opening credit sequence by Terry Gilliam and a lead performance by Vincent Price that is terrifically vicious. Unfortunately, the screenplay by Tim Kelly and Christopher […]

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Review: HOLLYWOOD MAN (1976)

Jack Starrett’s HOLLYWOOD MAN is an exploitation film about making an exploitation film. It’s also a grubby crime picture that features a terrific villain and an ending to die for. This 1976 flick is definitely of the shoestring variety and it features a screenplay by-committee, with cinematography by Robert C. Jessup and a recurring title […]

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Review: JACKSON COUNTY JAIL (1976)

A grimy road movie laced with blatant insinuations, JACKSON COUNTY JAIL has the distinction of featuring a very young Tommy Lee Jones in one of his earliest roles. It’s directed by Michael Miller with a screenplay by Donald E. Stewart. On its face, JACKSON COUNTY JAIL is unadulterated exploitation and all the better for it. […]

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Review: ASSASSIN’S CREED (2016)

Justin Kurzel’s ASSASSIN’S CREED is a frustrating film. The adaptation of the video game franchise of the same name boasts an awe-inspiring cast and some intriguing visual concepts, plus it brushes past some interesting philosophical and political ideas along the way. But the action is buried in clouds of dust and smoke and the flip-flopping […]

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