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Location: Prague, Bohemia
Member Since: Tue Apr 06, 2010
Posts: 1,551
Subj: Peplum review 24: Goliath and the Barbarians (1959)
Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 at 06:58:42 am EDT (Viewed 66 times)

with Steve Reeves.

This one is set very late in 568AD during the Lombard invasions of Italy, the same age of Jack Palance's "Sword of the Conqueror". It involves the decadent court of the late Empire invaded by the vigourous, ruthless Lombards.

It starts out with some brutal scenes with the population of Verona massacred and raped. Throughout the film we get some pretty brutal barbarian action for the time period. The Lombards themselves appear more like Mongols than scandinavians, with the dark-skinned Chelo Alonzo playing the chieftain's daughter and obligatory love interest.

Steve Reeves plays Emilio, a farmer who leads a resistance to the invaders with his sister. Reeves is so muscular, like an in his prime Scwartzenegger, and he gets lots of chances to show them off. He engages in a tug of war trial with a score of Lombards and even resists being drawn between two horses.

Emilio, who takes the name Goliath, is clearly into the superhuman strength catergory, throwing giant logs at armies. He even manages to steal the legendary iron crown of the Lombards. But, hilariously, he wears a silly lion's head as a disguise.

While I really wanted to like this one, as I think Reeves is great, its pretty standard fare, trying to tack on a happy ending to a really brutal time period.

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