THE WITCH’S CURSE (1962)
(a.k.a. MACISTE ALL’INFERNO)
Article #1430 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-12-2005
Posting Date: 7-12-2005
Directed by Riccardo Freda
Featuring Kirk Morris, Helene Chanel, Vira Silenti
A witch places a curse on a Scottish village, and only Maciste can rid the village of the curse.
I went into this movie knowing it was supposed to be a Sword and Sandal movie. However, the first eighteen minutes consist entirely of the witch-hunting antics of a seventeenth century Scottish village, and I began to really wonder if the movie had been wrongly classified. Well, I shouldn’t have doubted; at the twenty-minute mark, Maciste (clad in his traditional loincloth) rides into the village on his trusty horse, runs into a building, goes to the bars of a cage, and immediately goes into the patented Sword and Sandal bending-the-bars-back routine. Still, if you’re wondering what Maciste is doing in seventeenth-century Scotland, you’re asking the same question I asked about him in another movie when he appeared in 13th century China. You also may wonder why it is that when Maciste has to go to hell to defeat the witch who left the curse, he ends up in the Hades of Greek mythology (he meets that guy who was strapped to a rock so an eagle could eat his entrails every day) rather than the Hell of Christian mythology, but this will just give you a headache.
I have figured out one issue, though; it’s obvious that Maciste is a time traveler. When he loses his memory in Hades, he looks into a pool to recover it and sees scenes from ATLAS AGAINST THE CYCLOPS and the aforementioned foray into thirteenth-century China (the title of this one eludes me at the moment), so I can only assume that all three are the same Maciste. Now how else can this one man appear in three separate eras other than time travel? He can’t fool me; he may lead you to believe that he rides a horse around, but I’ll bet he has his Tardis just over the hill. He’s probably on first name terms with the Doctor, as well.
Yes, you heard me right. Maciste is a timelord. You heard it here first, folks.
Can I have my medicine now?