What could possibly be better than Robin Hood battling some filthy, scurvy-ridden pirates? Teaming up with some filthy, scurvy-ridden pirates to fight the evil douche who killed his dad and stole the Earldom of Sherwood!
And while no one can deny that trading Little John for a eye-patch wearing pirate called One Eye who actually has two good eyes is a monster upgrade, the movie would have been merely been solidly entertaining if it had stuck solely to its “pirates standing in for the Merry Men” angle.
But it in a stroke of either genius or complete tastelessness, this Italian version of Robin Hood (with German film legend and former Tarzan Lex Barker) adds a bit of sauce to the mix by giving us Sweet Pea, a sassy full-figured black woman, prone to singing spirituals and alternately beating on One Eye and declaring her love for him! Continue reading
If I wanted to see a real butch he-man like Lex Barker dressed in his satiny finest and wearing a powdered wig, I would go to that premium members only web site that’s discreetly billed to my credit card at $29.98 month!
But it wasn’t as if the transgendered appearance of one our great Tarzans was the only thing marring my enjoyment of what should have been an easy sell to someone as indiscriminate as me when it comes to Italian adventure films. There was the nasal and simpering voice used to dub Lex’s no doubt brawny real life voice, the fact that Lex fought sword fights while undercover with a blade that had his real name on it, and of course the pansified dance scene Lex and the audience were forced to endure during one of the movie’s numerous bouts of action anorexia. Continue reading
Is there a love strong enough that can withstand one pirate believing that her boyfriend pirate murdered her father in an effort to get revenge on her and her father because she bested him in humiliating fashion during their epic sword fight to determine who the new captain of the Santa Maria would be?
Of course the answer is normally, “fudge no!” What sort of pirate gets beat by his girlfriend and then mocked by her father and doesn’t come back later on and burn their entire freaking village to the ground and then salt the earth just to make sure they get the message? Some receipts just have to be issued in bloody triplicate!
But this isn’t a normal pirate love affair between a swarthy, lice-ridden, insecure brute and his barrel-chested, toothless 17th Century version of a used up biker mama! Continue reading
When the French teamed up with the Italians in 1959 to make a pirate movie for release the next year, one could be forgiven if the viewer was antsy that such a pairing might result in the sort of new wave pirate movie fans of Italian swashbuckling tales wouldn’t recognize, much less enjoy.
Would all the action take place in a guy’s flat with improvised dialogue between three characters moaning about the pointlessness of the human condition while unconventional filming techniques were used to show not only contempt for cinematic tradition, but also for the audience itself? Continue reading