Views & Reviews From Writer Steve Miller
Formerly Reviews and Stuff at Rotten Tomatoes, 2005 - 2009.

Currently Showing at Cinema Steve

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Muscle Man Battles Moon Men!

Hercules Against the Moon Men ("Maciste vs. the Moon Men" and "Hercules and the Queen of Samar") (1964)
Starring: Alan Steel, Anna Maria Polani, Jani Clair, and Delia D'Alberti
Director: Giacomo Gentilomo
Rating: Three of Ten Stars

The mighty Hercules (Steel) endeavors to liberate the city of Samar from its mad queen (Clair) and her bloodthirsty allies--a band of space aliens wishing to revive their queen (who just happens to be spitting image of the queen's virtuous half-sister (D'Aberti)) and make Earth their plaything. Along the way, Hercules breaks free of death traps, bashes many skulls, romances the beautiful daughter of the queen's chief advisor (Polani), and saves the world from destruction.

I love wacky movies. I thought that a film where ancient Greeks are fighting space aliens would be a hoot. I was wrong. While the film does have its moments--most of them interspersed with one of the most tedious end-of-the-world sequences ever put on film--there is too much meandering plot and too little alien-bashing action to make this film truly entertaining.

What I find most interesting about this film is that in the original Italian-language version, "Hercules" is actually named "Maciste", an all-purpose epic hero of Italian creation that has been featured in dozens of different pictures, set in several different time periods and different parts of the world. Few of the English-dubbed versions reported retain the name Maciste, instead rewriting it as Hercules, Samson, Goliath, and other better-known mythological figures.


  1. A lot of people love this movie, but it's just okay to me. I much prefer Gentilomo's GOLIATH & THE VAMPIRES instead. Lots of action in that one and another winner for Gordon Scott.

  2. I don't think I've even heard of "Goliath and the Vampires." I'll keep an eye out for it.

  3. Wild East released it here paired with the excellent Steve Reeves movie, GOLIATH & THE BARBARIANS. They simply booted the Spanish Warner Brothers DVD utilizing the English dub track. The Gordon Scott starring GOLIATH & THE VAMPIRES came from a worn film print somewhere. I reviewed both if you're interested in seeing what they're about.