DVD: www.amazon.com thefilmarchive.org Hercules (Italian: Le fatiche di Ercole) is a 1958 Italian epic fantasy feature film based upon the Hercules myths and the Quest for the Golden Fleece. The film stars Steve Reeves as the titular hero and Sylva Koscina as his love interest Princess Iole. Hercules was directed by Pietro Francisci and produced by Federico Teti. The film spawned a sequel, Hercules Unchained (Italian: Ercole e la Regina di Lidia), that also starred Reeves and Koscina. Hercules made Reeves an international film star and effectively paved the way for the dozens of 1960s sword and sandal flicks featuring oily bodybuilders as mythological heroes and gladiators battling monsters, despots, and evil queens. Hercules has been broadcast on American television, is in the public domain, and is available in both VHS and DVD formats. In 1993 the film was lampooned on Mystery Science Theater 3000. The film’s Italian title means “The Labors of Hercules”. The film’s screenplay is loosely based upon the myths of Hercules and the Greek epic poem Argonautica by Apollonius of Rhodes. In both myths and epic poem, Hercules’ role in the Quest for the Golden Fleece is marginal; he abandons the expedition early-on when Hylas, his armor-bearer and eromenos (Greek: ἐρώμενος), is lost on an island while searching for water. With Hylas conveniently absent in the film, Hercules’ role is greatly expanded: he remains with the expedition for its duration, saves the Argo from destruction



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