He ain't a Giant, he's my oily-skinned, diaper wearing broth
McGillicutty | The Sooner Nation | 10/14/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A Film Crew movie with an actual budget, "The Giant of Marathon" stars the well-oiled Steve "I'm not Hercules in this one" Reeves. Unlike most Italian sand `n sandal epics, you can actually follow the plot of this one...most of the time...as Steve wins the Olympics, tries to bag a blond hottie, wrestles a bit, gets hit on by a Vulcan hottie, throws things, runs a lot, and finally wins the day, I think. It helps that the film is well produced even if some of the dubbing is poor.
The riffs by The Film Crew are top notch from the get-go and perhaps the best of all four DVD releases. Some of the references are a bit racy for the kiddies, but that's to be expected I suppose.The skits are fairly good, although I must admit that the picture of Bob Honcho (which is different from the other DVDs) is just too funny for words.
The Bonus Features include a sincere apology from Mike who still manages to insult a lot of people. And "commentary" from a Walter S. Ferguson who sounds suspiciously like Mike Nelsen as he describes different roles he played in the film. It's better than the feature in "Hollywood After Dark" and that's about it.
This is the final DVD of "The Film Crew" experiment, we'll see if they sell well enough for more of the DVDs to be produced.
- This film is presented in the "widescreen" format.
- The actual title appears to be "The Battle of Marathon" which makes more sense since Steve Reeves is pretty big but hardly a giant.
- Although no one wears a bra, perhaps some of the men in this flick should...
The Best Film Crew DVD Yet!
Carlos | NJ | 10/14/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Like many other MiSTies out there, I was sad to see Mike and the 'Bots fall to earth in the last ever episode of MST3K and while I kept up with Mike's work with Legend Films (he provided hilarious commentary tracks) I held out hope that one day the show would be revived in some fashion, perhaps hitting the live college circuit. I was thrilled to discover that Mike, Bill and Kevin would once again be back in front of the cameras (or at least in the bottom right corner of your screen) doing what they do best, shredding the worst B-movie drek to crawl from Hollywood. Of the four DVD's the Film Crew have released The Giant Of Marathon is by far the best. Oh...by the best I of course mean the WORST, The film itself could be described as a bunch of lunkheads stumbling around ancient Greece for 90 minutes. You could easily compare it to the very best episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000 (not an unfair comparison given the pedigree here). While it's true you no longer have those sillouhettes to keep you company throughout these cinamatic travesties, the warped sense of humor is still there. I've even grown fond of the wraparound host segments now that the "characters" of Mike, Bill and Kevin have been established over the four Film Crew DVD's. I hope they can continue to make these as each DVD is certainly worthy of several viewings. I've bought 'em all and I'll line up for the next one.
Now the question remains: What's Joel doing these days?"
Andrew McCaffrey | Satellite of Love, Maryland | 05/27/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Film Crew consists of three alumni of the great movie-mocking TV show, MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000. The premise for this project is not that Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett are trapped in an orbiting satellite; instead, they're three lowly employees at a DVD distributor, charged by their boss to create a commentary track for every movie they release, no matter how obscure or painful.
This is the fourth (and -- so far -- final) release from The Film Crew. When the list of four films was initially announced, this was the one I was most looking forward to as it was the only movie I had actually seen in its original form. THE GIANT OF MARATHON isn't a completely awful film. I think the worst thing that could be is that it's simply dull in the non-battle sequences.
Steve Reeves stars in this sword and sandal movie. While Reeves had played Hercules in two other films, here he is portraying Philippides -- the Greek soldier who is said to have run the entire 26.2 miles from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to deliver the news of victory. However, you won't have to tax your mind too much with the difference; the character of Philippides is virtually identical to the Hercules character from earlier films.
I had been anticipating this DVD and I ultimately was not disappointed. The Film Crew's jokes at the expense of the production are very funny. I'd say that this disc and KILLERS FROM SPACE were the strongest two of the four in terms of quality comedy.
I'd like to see more of these straight-to-DVD releases from The Film Crew, although from what I've read on the Internet that doesn't seem likely. Just getting these four discs released seems to have been a hassle with the distribution rights bouncing away from Rhino Entertainment and (eventually) into the ownership of Shout Factory (note that whenever the characters mention the name of their boss, the dubbing says "Bob Honcho" while their lips say "Bob Rhino"). With these three ex-MST3k members now seemingly wrapped up in their work with RiffTrax, GIANT OF MARATHON may be the last outing we see in this incarnation of movie mocking. And that's a damn shame."
Imagine Thunderball with men in diapers
Roman Martel | California USA | 06/02/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000, but I was a little late to the Film Crew party. I heard about the series back when it was announced but for some reason it flew under my radar.
Recently I read some good reviews of the series, especially ones that compared it favorably to the seasons of the sci-fi channel run of MST3K. I decided to break down and pick up a couple. "The Giant of Marathon" was the second one I popped in.
I'm a fan of the Hercules episodes of Mystery Science Theater, so I figured this one would be right up my alley. However instead of a mythical epic, this is a historical epic detailing the turmoil in Athens leading up to the first battle with the Persians climaxing in the battle of Marathon. Now, I've read my Herodotus and I'm pretty sure that all the stuff that happens to Pheidippides in this movie didn't come from history.
In contrast to most of the Hercules movies most of the action in the film is loaded to the final third. For most of the first half or so you get lots of political maneuvering and dialogue. Now the movie is dubbed, so the voice acting is pretty lousy. This makes these long talky scenes particularly painful.
Once the action kicks in, things get better, with lots of laughs being generated by the horrific stage fighting, the horse abuse and the extended underwater battle that looks like "Thunderball" BC.
This movie appears to have a pretty large budget, so there are some impressive sets, costumes and lots of extras. The ship battle is probably the most impressive in scope. There are actually a number of ships on screen and lots of extras doing battle in and out of the water. It's fairly impressive to tell you the truth.
One of the strange things about the film is the fact that there are a lot of mostly naked men running around in it. Now, I know that most of the sword and sandal films have lots of oiled up half naked guys in them, but usually there is a voluptuous evil queen or sexy slave girl to balance it all out. Not so much in this film. Sure the main girl Andromeda is curvy and pouty, but she's hardly in the flick. Instead you get an extended scene of two hairy men wrestling or lots of underwater scenes with guys in what appears to be diapers swimming around. I'm not kidding.
Of course all this fodder give the Film Crew plenty of ammo for lots of homosexual humor. They end up going a bit overboard, but at the same time the movie seems to be really courting it. Seriously the amount of bare man flesh is really odd for a sword and sandal flick from the 60's.
For me this adds up to a pretty average outing for the Film Crew. The movie is pretty slow for the first half. They do a good job with what they are given, but it isn't until the battle of Marathon really kicks in that the jokes start flying. The last twenty minutes or so of the film are absolutely hilarious (even the scenes with the horse abuse. Warning to animal lovers, these look pretty brutal and while the Film Crew makes light of it, try not to think about it too much).
There are three host segments. The intro has the Film Crew discussing the film with Bob Honcho. During the lunch break Bill uses everyone's lunch to recreate the battle of marathon for Mike. Kevin is not amused. The finale has everyone creating super goofy hats (with Kevin's being the most disturbing of all), and Mike insulting ancient Persians.
This leads to the extras, which include Mike apologizing for insulting ancient Persians but insulting Italians instead. This continues with Mike digging a deeper and deeper hole for himself with Kevin and Bill trying to bail him out in the end. It's actually pretty funny. There is also a mini-commentary by an extra from the film (who sounds a lot like Mike). It starts off goofy and ends up going right over the top for some good laughs.
I have to admit it, I was a bit disappointed in this episode. I think my love of the Hercules episodes raised my hopes a little too high and the movie was just too slow in the beginning. Like I said the last 20 minutes are top notch material, but it's a little dull getting there."