Great news on the Blu-ray front: THIEF OF BAGHDAD (1961) starring Steve Reeves, Giorgia Moll, Hedy Vessel and Arturo Dominici will finally get a proper HD transfer. This has been a long time coming. All DVD releases were terrible, which horrible pan & scan or faux widescreen aspect ratios, and murky image quality. This is one of my most sought after titles and it’ll be available in Germany. I’ve already ordered it. This Blu-ray also has the Italian, German and English audio. This is a great Christmas present. In fact, the movie has a very Christmassy feel to it so hopefully I’ll receive before the holidays. Thanks to Chris for this tip.
HERCULES AGAINST THE SONS OF THE SUN (1964) is one of Mark Forest best PEPs. It’s colourful, action packed and the setting is sorta original. Giuliano is barely featured in the movie’s posters. Well, when the film was re-released in the 1970s all reference to Mark disappeared. It became a Giuliano Gemma movie. Giuliano is on the movie but he’s not the main star. Mark was. But by the 1970s, Mark had disappeared from the world of acting and Gemma was a popular star, thanks mainly to his Spaghetti Westerns. Even the VHS home release had Giuliano on the cover. Mark is nowhere to be seen.
I recently posted about getting the Blu-ray version of ULYSSES (1954), wondering which one to get: the German print or Japanese print. Well, someone (Alan) sent me a link to a HD version of a TV broadcast of the movie in France. It is gorgeous. Makes the movie look like a million bucks. I’m still wondering which Blu-ray to get but in the meantime this one will suffice. It’s only in French with no other language available. Starring Kirk Douglas, Sylvana Mangano and Umberto Silvestri. These screenshots don’t do it justice.
Unbeknownst to me, there are (or were) some board games based on Hercules.
This one is called FEATS OF HERCULES and it’s from the 90s. Funny enough, it’s in Greek! Can’t find an English version of this.
Board game based on the animated movie from Disney. It’s a board game for kids.
I’m still trying to figure out what this game is. It’s called ‘THE LABOURS OF HERCULES: Taming the beast within’ puzzle game. There are 4 different packs.
This one looks the most interesting. The creators are Chinese but text is in English. According to a board games website, the game was never published but one set is available on eBay. There are videos on Youtube about it.
I came across this comic book/ graphic novel on Amazon. I have no idea why this was made. It apparently began as a Kickstarter project. Anyway, I bought it. It credits the movie and some aspects are the same but many other aspects are different. Instead of Antaeus, Hercules fights the Minotaur. Odd.
Above is the German Blu-ray of ULYSSES (1954). It comes with 2 discs: one with a HD digital transfer from the original negative, at 100 minutes runtime, and the other is of a digital transfer with additional scenes, at 109 minutes. The audio included are Italian, German and English. The Blu-ray is region B, which means it’s not playable in standard Blu-ray players in North America.
On the other hand, there’s a Blu-ray from Japan, @103 minutes. The cover is amazing. The only audio: Italian. The Blu-ray is Region A which means it can be played with Blu-ray players in North America.
The deciding factor would be the price: the German one is 15.99 Euro while the Japanese one is 5100 Yen, or $51.00.
I really liked the HERCULES Blu-ray from Japan and I’m tempted in getting the Japanese one. Hmm…decisions. Why are Blu-rays so expensive in Japan?
I just received the two Blu-rays, HERCULES (1958) and HERCULES UNCHAINED (1959), from Japan via Amazon. I’m currently watching the first film while I’m writing this. Very interesting. The image is a clear improvement over what’s available even though the image has some scratches and a few defects, and some filters of sorts. I’ll write more on these Blu-rays in the near future. No English track. Only in Italian. I’ve seen this movie so many times that it doesn’t matter.
And this too…
More on this in the future…
I’m now watching HERCULES UNCHAINED and the quality is definitely poorer than HERCULES. Not a true Blu-ray transfer.