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Monday, September 28, 2009

DVD Capsule Review: Return of the Gladiator (1971)

Return of the Gladiator
(Il Ritorno del gladiatore più forte del mondo)

DVD released: May 19th, 2009
Approximate running time: 86 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Letterboxed Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English, Dolby Digital Mono Italian
Subtitles: N/A
DVD Release: Mya Communication
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $24.95

The Movie:

Rome, 310 A.D. The Roman Empire is beginning to collapse, and Proconsul Tullius Valerius (Albert Farley) fears that provincial governor Gaius (John Barracuda) has been secretly working with those Germanic barbarians seeking to end Roman rule. Valerius then orders to former gladiator Marcus (Brad Harris) to go undercover and investigate this situation. In Gaius' territory also lives Lycia (Maria Pia Conte), the beloved of Marcus. Gaius soon learns of Marcus' plans, and has him captured and unfairly accused of murder. Led to believe that Marcus is guilty, Lycia turns against him, and Gaius condemns the gladiator to be pulled apart by teams of horses.

Bitto Albertini (Yellow Emanuelle) directs this average Peplum epic that although no great shakes, will definitely let you while away an afternoon snoozing in front of the TV without needing to pay too much attention to the plot! Throw in some unintentional comedy and dodgy acting and you have yourself some classic Italian Peplum action!

The Disc:

The 2.35:1 image is fine and in good condition, with very little in the way of any print damage. The mono Italian and English audio are both fine, but I recommend Italian with English subs for a more enjoyable presentation with the English dub none too clever! Once again no extras for a fairly rare title is perhaps not surprising!

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