Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Cottafavi on Hercules.

Vittorio Cottafavi: Ridicule is one of the elements of love. If something is not loved one cannot make fun of it. That today Hercules seems a little bit ridiculous is a fact, even though at the time of the Greeks and Romans he was certainly not ridiculous. Let's look at the legends: this is the son of a god, a powerful being, who was forced to clean the shit from the Augean stables. That's a little bit ridiculous, no? Therefore perhaps we could amuse ourselves a little bit. Secondly: he was a true hero, but with an everyday life. I liked the fact that, in ERCOLE ALLA CONQUISTA DI ATLANTIDE (HERCULES CONQUERS ATLANTIS, aka HERCULES AND THE CAPTIVE WOMEN), he doesn't ever have any desire to fight. Also in LA VENDETTA DI ERCOLE (THE VENGEANCE OF HERCULES, aka GOLIATH AND THE DRAGON) there were many amusing things. All the feats of strength that he did, substituting himself for the beasts of burden, demolishing a tree all alone that four oxen were not able to budge. Hercules was a man of serious goals and good humor, but humor in a sense of justice. Not an Asterix, but rather part of a certain tradition. One of us. Whereas (in Westerns) a sheriff is perhaps someone with whom we could identify, but is much more distant from us. I have the feeling that Hercules is a character that we know intimately. A friend. In ERCOLE ALLA CONQUISTA DI ATLANTIDE, we have also employed elements of science fiction: for example the idea that the blood of Uranus, murdered by his son, falls to the Earth and forms uranium!

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