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PEPLUM

HEROIC FANTASY

ADVENTURES OF MARY READ (1960)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Umberto Lenzi, Stars: Lisa Gastoni, Jerome Courtland, Walter Barnes. Redhead Mary is a girl who dresses like a man to better approach, and rob the jewels worn by the pretty ladies of her time. The King's Guard captures her, and she finds herself in the same cell with Peter Goodwin, a nobleman - who pretends to be a robber like her, to flirt with her. After her evasion, Mary goes up the ladder in her criminal life - becoming a good pirate under captain Poof. When the captain dies, the only 'man' aboard who is respected by every faction among the pirates is... Mary. She represents a menace to the Florida Governor, who invites a nobleman to lead the King's naval forces against the pirates: Peter Goodwin.

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TERROR OF ROME AGAINST THE SON OF HERCULES (1964)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director - Mario Caiano, Mark Forest,  Marilù Tolo. The film deals about Maciste (Mark Forest) , gladiator of Sparta , the mythical hero who encounters pretty risked situations while trying to win over his true love , a beautiful Christian . Maciste who is nicknamed Hercules in US must use all his strength to save the girl he loves from malicious emperor (Peter White) and the Pretorians captain (Robert Hundar) making a desperate bid to rescue the Christians . 

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GLADIATOR OF ROME (1962)- NICE LETTERBOXED PRINT!! Director: Mario Costa, Stars: Gordon Scott, Wandisa Guida, Roberto Risso. Gordon Scott is a Silesian servant to a princess who family was killed by a usurper and she and Scott sold into slavery by the Romans. The Silesians are friendly barbarians in the pay of Rome guarding the Empire's boarders and the usurper wants the princess found and killed. But Roman politics intervene and the Roman house to which she and Scott were sold into is similarly ravaged and the head of the household who is a Senator is killed. A Roman general who has the contract on the princess is on the hunt again. In the meantime Scott is trained as a gladiator, but they haven't seen a gladiator like him since Spartacus was running amuck in Italy. He gets the other gladiator trainees incited and the action really pops.

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SWORD OF THE CONQUEROR (1962)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Carlo Campogalliani, Cast: Jack Palance, Eleonora Rossi Drago, Guy Madison, Carlo D'Angelo, Edy Vessel. Alboino, the Lombard ruler, wants to marry the daughter of a neighboring king, but she loves another. Her father arranges the marriage to Alboino, which he believes will benefit himself, only to have Alboino kill him and leave Amalchi, his daughter's real love, beaten and left for dead. Amalchi recovers to lead a revolt against the murderous Alboino and reclaim his love...

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GIANT OF MARATHON (1959)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Jacques Tourneur and Mario Bava. Steve Reeves ,Mylène Demongeot, Set in 490 B.C. when the Persian armies were ready to finish conquering Greece and head into Europe, Phidippides (Steve Reeves, who else?) rallies the Athenians and they fight a series of spectacular, massive battles. In reality, Phidippides had run 140 miles to Sparta and back to ask for their help before any battles began. The Persians had already landed on the plains of Marathon, 26 miles from Athens but thanks to Phidippides forewarning, they were defeated by advancing Athenian forces. Phidippides' final run from Marathon back to Athens to warn them about a second attack by the Persian forces is not depicted in this drama -- that last run on top of the futile, 280-mile round trip to Sparta, cost him his life.

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HERCULES AGAINST THE SONS OF THE SUN. (1964)-IN FRENCH WITH ENGLISH SUBS, AND AT LAST A BEAUTIFUL WIDESCREEN PRINT! Director: Osvaldo Civirani, Stars: Mark Forest, Anna-Maria Pace, Giuliano Gemma. This somewhat imaginative crossbreed sees the typical Italian hero Hercules (here played by American Mark Forest) finding himself mixed up with the Incas! Hercules is shipwrecked and immediately clashes with the locals yet helped by their rivals (led by Giuliano Gemma, still a year away from attaining genuine stardom with the first Ringo Spaghetti Western). Apparently, for all their architectural know-how, the Incas are still a backward people when it comes to warfare (given the surprising number on display here, they’re seemingly more interested in raising llamas than anything else) – so that it takes Hercules to update their weaponry and organize the surprise attack on the usurper!

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COLOSSUS AND THE HEADHUNTERS (1963)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Guido Malatesta, Stars: Kirk Morris, Laura Brown, Demeter Bitenc. Maciste rescues Ario, the son King Sandor, and his people from their land in a volcanic island that blows-up and they sail to the Land and Urias in a long and dangerous voyage. They are captured by the Urias but when the Queen Amoha meets Maciste, she tells that the traitor Kermis has joined the tribe of Head Hunters and slaughtered her people, but the warrior Taro has saved them from the annihilation; however, her father King Olibauna was missing in action. She asks Maciste to help her against the Head Hunters, but Maciste tells that he is protecting the tribe of Ario. When the Urias are attacked by the Head Hunters, Maciste decides to help Queen Amoha.

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URSUS AND THE TARTAR PRINCESS (1961)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Remigio Del Grosso, Stars: Yôko Tani, Ettore Manni, Roland Lesaffre. During the 16th century, Tartar hordes from the east invade the Polish countryside, spreading havoc and disaster.  Ursus (Joe Robinson) , Prince Stephan (Ettore Manni) and friends come to the rescue!

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RETURN OF THE GLADIATORS (1971)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Bitto Albertini (as Al Albert), Stars: Brad Harris, Massimo Serato, Raf Baldassarre. Tullius Valerius -- a Proconsul of Rome, circa 310 A.D. -- fears that a provincial governor named Gaius Appius Quintillianus has been secretly working with those Germanic barbarians seeking to end Roman rule. Valerius elevates Marcus, a gladiator turned soldier, to the post of Vice Proconsul with orders to go "undercover" to investigate this situation. Marcus selects two friends, fellow soldier Claudius and pickpocket Volcan, to accompany him into Gaius' territory. In this territory lives Lycia, daughter of Manlius and the beloved of Marcus. Gaius soon learns of Marcus's plans, thanks to the evil Stovius. Gaius kills Manlius and blames the crime on Marcus. Lycia turns against Marcus whom Gaius condemns to be pulled apart by teams of horses. Marcus survives this "Test of Strength" as reinforcements arrive from Rome. Gaius dies in battle, Claudius reunites with his Christian girlfriend, Diana, and an enlightened Lycia welcomes Marcus back with open arms.

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REVENGE OF THE CRUSADER (1964)-IN ITALIAN WITH ENGLISH SUBS, LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: José Luis Monter, Stars: María José Alfonso, Alberto Lupo, Stephen Forsyth. Wounded in a skirmish with bandits, Count Sigfrido di Treviri (Lupo) is taken to a nearby castle of the Duke of Brabant where he is tended by his daughter Genoveffa (Alfonso)and the two gradually fall in love. Shortly after their marriage and return to Treveri, the Count fulfills his vow to go on crusade, where he and his men are eventually captured. Meanwhile,in the Count's absence the half mad counsellor Golo (Forsyth with a psychotic edge) tries to force his attentions on the countess who rebuffs him and soon finds herself powerless as her loyal servants are murdered and tortured while Golo consolidates his power. More than four years pass, with the count's letters being intercepted and the countess' reputation ruined as she is accused of adultery and condemned to death. Altogether a rousing tale of persecution and vengeance which will keep viewers interested.

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WARRIOR AND THE SLAVE GIRL (1958)-LETTERBOXED PRINT,  UNCUT VERSION WITH AN EXTRA 6 MINUTES OF FOOTAGE, SOME SCENES IN SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBS! Directed by Vittorio Cottafavi, Cast: Ettore Manni ... Marco Numidio, Gianna Maria Canale ... Amira, Mara Cruz ... Zahar, Georges Marchal ... Asclepio. Cottafavi directs a fine early genre specimen here. The movie starts out by having us believe that the Romans have grown tired and bored of their empire. No wonder it is crumbling. So this Marcus goes on quasi-vacation to Armenia, where the girls are supposed to be pretty a.s.o., and runs into the people's revolt. Princess Amira (played by lush beauty Gianna Maria Canale - what a lady!) immediately gain his attention. Little does he know she wants to get rid of 5-year-old Osro to ascend the throne herself. Meanwhile, the captives from the revolt are mistreated and paired off in the arena, to the amusement of the decadent Romans and Scythians (Amira's bodyguard). But there is also the titular slave girl, who hates all Romans but conveniently knows a lot about poisoning and might just save little Osro in time.

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THE RED SHEIK (1962)-BEAUTIFUL LETTERBOXED PRINT, NO MORE GREEK SUBS! Director: Fernando Cerchio, Stars: Channing Pollock, Luciana Gilli, Rosalba Neri,  Mel Welles. Morocco 1850: The end of hostilities between the rebel Amar and Ajabar Sultan is celebrated. During the festivities, his lieutenant, the RED SHEIK is brutally murdered with several of his men. Soon a legend is born: (The ghost of SHEIK roams the abandoned city invoking vengeance ...). Time passes ...Out of a sandstorm, a stranger arrives at the court of Amar ...Soon after ambushes, riots, kidnappings, murders, vengeance ...

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SHEBA AND THE GLADIATOR (1959)-UNCUT, LETTERBOXED AND FINALLY ENGLISH DUBBED! Director: Guido Brignone, Stars: Anita Ekberg, Georges Marchal, Folco Lulli. Guido Brignone's 1959 peplum stars Anita Ekberg as Zenobia, Queen of Palmyra. In 217 A.D., she decides to resist Roman rule and sends hordes of her own troops against the Roman Legions. A Centurion, Marcus Valerius (Georges Marchal), is sent as an emissary and eventually gains her trust. Blinded by her love for him, she sends her soldiers into a trap devised by the Romans...

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SLAVE OF ROME (1961)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Beautiful widescreen print! During Julius Caesar's invasion of Gallia: The Gauls have broken their treaty with the Romans. Marcus Valerius and his friend are sent to punish them. When Antea, princess of the Gauls is captured by the Romans, she falls in love with Marcus. But after her father is killed in treachery, Antea must avenge her people or forsake them forever. Guy Madison, Rosanna Podesta, and Giacomo Rossi-Stuart, directed by Sergio Grieco.

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TERROR OF THE REDMASK (1960)-IN GERMAN WITH ENGLISH SUBS, BEAUTIFUL WIDESCREEN PRINT. Director: Luigi Capuano, Stars: Lex Barker, Chelo Alonso, Livio Lorenzon. TERROR OF THE RED MASK is a light and routine Italian swashbuckler of 1960. The story is about a cruel lord who terrifies the local populace while dashing hero Lex Barker is a soldier in his employ. The two men go up against the sinister Red Mask, a disguised Robin Hood-style outlaw waging his own private war against the lord, and Barker inevitably finds his allegiances torn. This film features the usual elements of earnest melodrama, romance, and sword play, although the action isn't quite as heavy as some. Still, the setting and costumes are fine, and there's very little to dislike overall.

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MOLEMAN VS THE SON OF HERCULES (1961)-IN ITALIAN WITH ENGLISH SUBS, LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Antonio Leonviola (as Leonviola), Stars: Mark Forest, Moira Orfei, Paul Wynter. Maciste arranges for himself and his new friend Bangor to be captured by a mysterious band of white-clad marauders and taken to an underground city. There the two are forced to turn an enormous wheel along with other captives as part of a gold-and-diamonds mining operation. The underground city's queen, Halis Mosab, takes note of the handsome, muscular Maciste and chooses him to be her consort if he can meet such challenges as saving the kidnapped Princess Saliura from a gigantic ape. Maciste kills the ape and carries Saliura back to the aboveground world. The white-clad marauders can't follow them if it means being caught in the sunlight which instantly dissolves them. Maciste then returns to the underground city to save the other captives. Meanwhile, high priest Kahab informs his son, Katar, that their queen is not one of them but, unbeknownst to her, was kidnapped as a small child from the "world above.

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2 GLADIATORS (1964)-BEAUTIFUL WIDESCREEN PRINT. Director: Mario Caiano, Stars: Richard Harrison, Moira Orfei, Alberto Farnese, Giuliano Gemma. Once upon a time there were born two twin boys to Emperor Marcus Aurelius and for reasons of dynasty the birth of twins was kept secret. One of the twins was supposed to be drowned at birth but fate intervenes and the kid is brought up in a good household and enters Rome's legions. Moira Orfei is a beautiful temptress as ever.  Giuliano Gemma and Alvaro de Luna as Harrison's faithful friends add to the hero's nonchalant bravado. Mimmo Palmara is an excellent fighter (as he has often proved in the genre), but as Commodus he is colorless. Peplum's classic heavies Piero Lulli and Alberto Farnese do well as the emperor's sinister advisors Cleander and Leto.

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THE NORMAN SWORDSMAN (1972)-LETTERBOXED PRINT. Director: Roberto Mauri, Stars: Mark Damon, Luis Dávila, Krista Nell. Following the death of Henry I in 12th-century England, the throne is usurped by Stephen Cunningham who claims to possess the legendary "Sword of Normandy." A man named Ivanhoe now returns from years spent in the Holy Land. He knows that Henry I's son, true heir to the throne, was killed in the Crusades. He also knows that the sword possessed by Stephen is actually a fake. Making alliances with a troupe of traveling actors and with a band of highwaymen, Ivanhoe manages to find the real sword, to topple Stephen, and to find romance with Henry I's daughter.

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SINBAD AND THE CALIPH OF BAGDAD (1973)- Director: Pietro Francisci, Stars: Robert Malcolm, Sonia Wilson, Luigi Bonos. This Sinbad film was mistakenly credited as Simbad when released on VHS. Most copies were re-called from stores and those of us who were able to secure one was lucky to keep this interesting piece of work. The company went bankrupt soon after re-calling the copies available from stores. Hence, it has never been released again. Returning from a long sea voyage, Sinbad finds himself stripped of his home and possessions by the crazy Caliph who turns out to be his lookalike. he falls in with a pair of rogues whose incompetence leaves all three drugged and sold into slavery on the high seas. Allah intervenes and they find themselves on the ship bringing the beautiful princess Scheherazade to Baghdad for her wedding to the murderous Caliph. Sinbad immediately falls head-over-heels in love with this Arabian Nights Princess - with disastrous results!

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ULYSSES VS HERCULES (1961)-LETTERBOXED PRINT, UNCUT WITH SOME SCENES IN ITALIAN WITH ENGLISH SUBS! Director: Mario Caiano, Stars: Georges Marchal, Mike Lane, Alessandra Panaro, Dominique Boschero, and Gabriele Tinti. Hercules is on a mission from the gods to find and capture Ulisses for blinding the Cyklops. Ulisses outsmarts Hercules and manages to escape, encounters some fantastic creatures or evil queens, is captured again, outsmarts Hercules, escapes, encounters creatures etc. in absurdum. Of course the two heroes finally becomes the best of friends and joins forces to defeat the evil king Lagos (wonderfully played by Gianni Santuccio), a sweaty, sickly and rambling madmen who likes to torture women and uses his army of neanderthal men to pillage the nearby villages in quest for total power.

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REVENGE OF THE GLADIATORS (1964)-UPGRADED QUALITY, LETTERBOXED AND NO ON SCEEN SUBTITLES! Director: Luigi Capuano, Stars: Mickey Hargitay, José Greci, Livio Lorenzon. In 454 A.D. barbarians led by the Vandal king, Genseri, besiege Rome which is ruled by the ineffectual Valentinian III and his wife, Calpurnia. The Roman general Ezio manages to temporarily halt the Vandals' advance. Now arriving on the scene is Ezio's son, Fabius, who had been reported as killed in battle. Fabius falls in love with Valentinian's daughter, Priscilla, while coming to the realization that Rome is weak and corrupt. Genseri now hatches a plan to take over Rome by marrying his son to Priscilla, To prevent this, Fabius hides Priscilla but is then captured and tortured by Genseri who wants to know the young woman's whereabouts. Priscilla comes forward and agrees to marry Genseri's son if Genseri will free Fabius. Genseri agrees but, at the wedding, he breaks his word and shows Priscilla a cross where Fabius has been crucified with ropes. Priscilla is outraged but then relieved when Fabius' friends arrive to save Fabius and to defeat the Vandals in battle.

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HERCULES VS MOLOCH (1963)-LETTERBOXED WITH NO ANNOYING GREEK SUBS! Director: Giorgio Ferroni, Stars: Gordon Scott, Alessandra Panaro, Rosalba Neri. A deposed prince arrives in a city ruled over by a cult that worships an evil monster as a god. He becomes a gladiator and his feats in the arena earn him a place on the queen's royal guard, but secretly he plots to lead a revolution and destroy the creature that has enslaved the people. The film is very nicely shot and designed, with some elaborate sets and beautiful costumes. The Italian supporting cast features some beautiful actresses, including Rosalba Neri and Alessandra Panaro. The always-reliable Arturo Dominici, a regular of Italian genre films, appears as the chief villain, Penthius, Mycenae's leading general, and makes a suitably formidable opponent for the hero.

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CHALLENGE OF THE GLADIATOR (1965)-MAJOR MAJOR UPGRADE, NOW LETTERBOXED AND 10 MINUTES LONGER THAN PREVIOUS RELEASE!! Director: Domenico Paolella, Stars: Peter Lupus, Massimo Serato, Livio Lorenzon. Treacherous Roman senator Lucius Quintilius plans a secret journey into Thrace to recover a legendary treasure. He is accompanied by his daughter Livia posing as a Christian slave girl, his cruel henchman Commodio, and Terenzius, an ex-gladiator and Nero look-alike who fools the local Thracians into believing he is the real Emperor. But Lucius's plans are thwarted by Spartacus and his band of rebels who succeed in capturing the treasure for Thrace. When news arrives from Rome that the real Nero has died, local Roman governor Consul Metellus joins forces with Spartacus to defeat the traitors.

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