Hercules and the TIE THE OTHER END OF THE ROPE TO THE CHARIOT Moment
The One-Line Summary: Zeus, a Greek God living on the moon (not Mount Olympus) zaps a human baby with a beam of light and makes him god-like who grows up to go fight injustice by punching a bear in the face and defeating the dreaded Daedalus who wants to rule with world using a terrible weapon called “science.”
The Two-Line Blurb: In this 1983 Italian made epic, Lou Ferrigno plays the titled hero though “plays” is a strong word since he mostly stands around looking well-oiled but utterly confused as very minor and slow moving things happen around him. Made on almost no budget, the “film” is a poorly-acted, terribly directed, plotless, unconvincing mess of horribly-staged set pieces and special effects so bad it’s a wonder how it was ever mad so therefore is an absolute must-see as a classic in the genre.
The Three-Line Set-up: In his travels, Hercules meets Cassiopeia, a King’s beautiful daughter with whom Hercules is enamored and wants to prove his heroism so he cleans a horse stable by altering the flow of a large, nearby river, which seems like more effort than just bringing a shovel. Anyway, the lovely Cassiopeia is kidnapped by the daughter Minos, a servant of Daedalus, and during the fight, Hercules gets chained and tossed into the sea. Along comes Circe, a scantily-clad witch who frees the demi-god and requests that he take her to Hell to retrieve her magic talisman, which she says can aid Hercules in rescuing the fair Cassiopeia, though we know that’s got bad news written all over it.
The Four-Line Moment: There is a lot of nonsense happening and keeping up is really difficult, especially since most of parts are dubbed in English, but here we have Hercules preparing his white chariot for a trip to Thera, which needs some momentum to get going so he decides he will tie a carved stone brick to the front and they heave it into space. First he needs a rope, which Circe magically supplies, and then he needs them tied, which she also obliges, because everyone knows, particularly if you are a bulbous, oily child of Zeus, making knots is really, really hard. In stop-motion animation below Saturday morning children’s television standards, the magic rope attaches itself to the rock and the chariot and then the two are off in space after the big guy gives the rock a mighty twirl. It’s the stuff of legends and somehow gives you a warm, cozy feeling in knowing that our brief time on this spinning rock is made better by people who make movies like this.
The Five-Word Review: Ferrigno is better as Hulk.