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Here are some insanely outrageous cheesefests that should satisfy any B flick lover's cravings. With the huge success of Conan and the Beastmaster I guess it's only natural that the Cannon Group get their fingers in the pie. These films are both Italian productions. Hey, why not? After all, the Italians had the market cornered on sword and sandal flicks back in the day. Writer/Director "Lewis Coates"(American companies insisted on Italian directors to use more American sounding pseudonyms) is actually Luigi Cozzi, who as everyone knows, directed the box office smashes Starcrash and everyone's favorite exploding chest flick, Contamination. Both movies look like they were shot at the same time, and actually feel more like a three hour film than two seperate ones. The first film starts with some poppycock about astronomy, then has Zeus creating our hero to shift the good/evil balance. Hercules falls in love however and goes after his love who has been kidnapped by the evil King Minos. Minos constantly rants about the power of science over that of the gods even though he's constantly using supernatural means to do his deeds. Not to mention that he wants Herc's girl as a sacrifice to a phoenix fire-god. On his quest Hercules flexes, bends swords, fights giant windup toys, battles stock footage, punches everyone, throws styrofoam boulders, throws a grizzly bear into outer space, breaks swords on his shins, grows huge, seperates Africa from Europe, and refuses the advances of two women(one of them Sybil Danning!) How noble. Once Minos is defeated and his chick saved, Zeus kinda just plucks him into outer space and turns him into a flexing constellation, storing him for further use. In the second film, Zeus releases him from his suspended flex pose to retrieve seven thunderbolts(they're actually lightning bolts, not that you really give a crap) stolen by renegade gods, Poseidon, Hera and Aphrodite. These gods resurrect the evil King Minos who's still using magic whilst flapping his gums about the power of science. Once again Hercules flexes, punches alot of folks, fights slime people and a guy in a makeshift Chewbacca outfit, doesn't hit on either of the two chix who would gladly have him, turns huge again, and transforms into an animated gorilla for some unknown reason to fight the final battle. Classic.

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MG1008561 Hercules/Hercules II DVD (1983/Lou Ferrigno) $14.98