Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Instant Fun: The Medusa Against The Son of Hercules

Are you ready for a really misleading description?  Good.  Today's film is The Medusa Against The Son of Hercules, one of many in a series.  Which Son of Hercules?  Why Perseus, that's who.  I know what you're thinking- they never even met, let alone were related.  Well, are you ready to find out the truth?  Basically, someone bought up a bunch of Sword and Sandal Films- some with Hercules, Ulysses and the like- and lumped them together as The Sons of Hercules.  My friends and I first came across this phenomenon thanks to Rifftrax and their hilarious riffing of The Sons of Hercules: Land of Darkness (well worth your $9.99).  There are 14 of these things, so I may get to more of these in the future.  With nothing to do one night, Bob and I checked this out on Streaming.  It is crap.  It is funny crap though.  The film tells the story of Perseus, some evil guy, a dragon that never fully exits a lake and the titular Medusa.  It is stretched quite a bit to fill 90 minutes and just plain silly on multiple occasions.  After a long delay, I remember it fondly still.  To find out if you will feel the same, read on...
If you didn't know that this was a 'TV Series' made up of multiple films, this would REALLY freak you out.  How many Writers do you need?!?!?
The Story begins properly by explaining to you that this is about Perseus, who is a 'Son of Hercules' since the guy liked him.  No, really.
Basically, there are two forces.  They keep fighting in this rocky area.  As it turns out, this is a bad idea since there is a Medusa nearby and the world's laziest Dragon.  Much like 'Zombie Dad' from Amityville Dollhouse, it seems cool until you realize the limitation- in this case, it is not ever exposing more than half of the creature.

Apparently this is the ONLY way to travel for the good guys, which seems implausible and contrived.  Who'd live there?
Perseus (Richard Harrison) finally plays a role: he's a guy who wants to avenge his father's death, while also not wanting to fight.

He is also secretly-training the Princess (it's a secret to him that she's a Princess, that is).  He's kind of dull.
He ends up working for the King as a Guard...and immediately quits.  He's kind of a puss.

Despite winning a fight earlier and getting a job, he quits...only to return to save the Princess.  It's Damsel in Distress Syndrome, folks!
This guy is evil.  He wants to marry the Princess.  That is the only thing you need to know.
Perseus is the hero, so he naturally takes out both creatures.  Both events are a bit underwhelming.

He kills the Dragon by...swimming near it and re-emerging.  He kills the Medusa by looking away with a shield and swinging his Sword.  Lame.
With the Medusa dead, Perseus has a new Army.  I'm sure that these people who just got un-stoned will be great fighters and have all of their weapons!
Of course, Perseus wins.  He kills the villain, who makes this lovely face before going to see Hades & the day is saved.  The End.
This is cheesier than Parmesan!  Viewed as its own film- Perseus the Invincible-, it is straight-forward with some cheesy moments.  Viewed as a Son of Hercules film and it takes on an extra-cheesy nature.  He's obviously not related to the famous Demi-God, so you're confused right from the gate.  It puts you in the frame of mind that makes every goofy moment- like the world's laziest dragon- just seem extra ridiculous.  There are certainly moments that could really work- like the dragon's detailed design-, so it is not without worth.  The glimpses of a good movie make it worth giving a shot, while its cheesy moments will make you laugh.  There are certainly structural problems.  For example, Perseus is a very hard to follow hero.  He wants revenge, but doesn't rush off to get it.  He loses to a guy, then barely wins the next time...but they just act like he is a great hero now.  Right...okay.  I will say that there is a line where a hero can be reluctant, but still make him seem driven.  It doesn't really work here, as Perseus constantly seems to fight against the plot itself!  In summary, this is a sub-par movie made fun and cheesy...albeit by accident.  If you like to do your own Rifftrax/MST3K-style riffing, you will get a kick out of this.  I will leave you with one Actor's total fail at being an Archer (which they didn't bother Editing out)...
Next up, I'm either doing an Arty Import or a Full Moon Film.  Since they couldn't be any more different, you can enjoy the suspense.  Stay tuned...

1 comment:

  1. This film was hilarious. Poor Perseus was one of the most utterly inept heroes of all time. He was never allowed to look capable or heroic. He gets his butt kicked in pretty much every situation and only wins anything through sheer luck. He's inconsistent, incompetent, and extremely dull-witted. He basically stumbles from place to place, accomplishing nothing, until he lucks into a few vaguely heroic acts. Son of Hercules right there, yep.

    I'm convinced that if we continue to find more of these "Sons of Hercules" films we'll eventually happen on one that stars Gus, a gas station attendant in Northern Wisconsin, who happens to be of Greek heritage on his mother's side and had this one kind of vaguely exciting day when he found a quarter that, for a time, he believed might be worth as much as $13.97.