In 1250 BC Jason (Roland Carey) has been away from the city of Colchis for the last year. He left his family in the care of his cousin Adrastus (Alberto Farnese) to go on a quest. Zeus is pissed off and has stricken the kingdom with volcanoes and tragedies. The city is on the brink of starvation. He has condemned the Kingdom of Thessaly and especially the city of Colchis unless Jason and the Argonauts can acquire the Golden Fleece that had been stolen and return it to its rightful place. The fleece had been a gift to Thessaly and represented Zeus’s divine power and protection.
While Jason is away Adrastus is plotting. He covets Jason’s wife Creusa (Ziva Rodann). He plans on raiding the treasure and absconding with Creusa to another land where he can conquer its people and rule over the inhabitants with Creusa at his side as his wife.
Meanwhile Jason is battling ragging seas. After the sea finally calms repairs are made to the ship. The Argos sails until they reach the isle of Lemnos. The island only contains women. The women are witches that killed all the men. The crew of the Argos are tuned into sheep. The head witch, Gaia (Maria Teresa Vianello), wants to seduce Jason. If she can she will retain her beauty but Jason will die. Jason overcomes Gaia.
Once he and his men escape from Lemnos the Argos wanders until they reach another island. They find the terrified inhabitants fleeing from a Cyclops. Jason and his men defeat the Cyclops.
The Argos finally reaches Colchis the land where the Golden Fleece is kept. The oracle was clear. Only Jason is allowed to go ashore and steal the fleece. Jason is put ashore to attempt to obtain the fleece and save his homeland. Jason must scale a giant statue to retrieve the fleece. With his prize obtained Jason and the Argonauts sail for home not knowing that Adrastus has taken over the city and plans on killing Jason as soon as he reaches the shores of Colchis.
“The Giants of Thessaly” was released in 1960 and was directed by Riccardo Freda. It is an Italian/French sword and sandal film.
A few corners were cut in the story. A narrator fills in some of the storyline and a woman chained to a wooden pillory relays some more of the story and some stuff is just referred to in passing. The plot doesn’t flow very well and the editing seems a little choppy. The print is old and the colors are a little washed out. On some copies of the film the last few minutes are cut off. Fortunately there’s nothing really important missing in those few minutes. The film was also short on monsters and the monster it did have was a strange looking furry Cyclops thing. Not a problem since crappy monsters are my weakness but it was only one crappy monster.
The movie is OK but not the best sword and sandal I’ve seen. The scene where Jason is climbing the statue to get the fleece is not bad but a little length. The scenes on the boat are also not too bad. Some of the acting is decent and some is bad. All together it’s an alright film but nothing special.
Roland Carey was not your typical Sword and Sandal hero. Although he was proficient in many sports he was never a body builder. He was in fact an actor that went to drama school. He was of Swiss-French dual citizenship. He was born in Switzerland and attended the Paris Conservatory. He worked in America, France and Italy as an actor. He also did dubbing of Italian films into French.