1X400’ on Fuji Stock
Super 8 English sound
I’ve always had a soft spot for the sword and sandal genre and when I came across the Steve Reeves classic Italian epic, I had to have it.
It’s the familiar story loosely based upon the Hercules myths and the Quest for the Golden Fleece.
The digest itself maintains much of the fun of the full length feature and moves along at a nice clip.
It kicks off on Colchis with Jason slaying the dragon (yes with the famous Godzilla roar). The plot then centers on the theft of the Fleece from our heroes by the evil king Pelias, denying Jason’s claim and plotting his death.
Of course Herc comes to the rescue but is quickly captured and put in chains as a battle between our heroes and Pelias’ forces ensue. Of course, our hero easily escapes, and, in the iconic climax, Hercules topples the portico of the palace on Pelias forces and the evil king drinks poison in his defeat.
I wonder how it looked new as its obvious it did not originate from great source material. The first part suffers from many white lines and coming and going and not from the print itself. The focus is slightly soft but still satisfying. Some blues still remain in the sky but has the print progresses color has faded to an orangey pink. Strangely though, the Derann logo is still bright and colourful.
German Peplum collectors have been pretty lucky when it comes to super 8 releases. It would be interesting to see a list of what sword and sandal films were released in the 8mm format. I am not aware of any other English releases.
All in all this edit tells a coherent and enjoyable story on a full 400 foot reel.