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Hercules Returns (1993)

Who would’ve thought voice-over dubbing would be so fun?



Who would’ve thought voice-over dubbing would be so fun?


One of the forgotten Australian classics, Hercules Returns stars David ArgueMary Coustas and Bruce Spence who make the strongest mythological person in the world a puny weakling within one sitting.

Argue is Brad McBain, a ‘Yes Man’ to the CEO of the biggest cinema company in the world, Sir Michael Kent (Michael Carman). When Kent wants to expand the cinema complex even further to destroy everything in its path, McBain realises that they are losing their way to how a cinema complex used to run – a simple silver screen with affordable pricing and warmth at the entry door. So he pulls the plug when he disagrees with the boss and does his own way, buying the run-down Picture Palace complex and recruiting an old school projectionist Sprocket (Spence) and PR talent Lisa (Coustas).

With the pressure of his old boss Kent claiming he’ll crush McBain when he reopens the Picture Palace, McBain re-opens the cinema and decides to play the last film shown before the original closure: Samson & His Mighty Challenge. All is good and well, until minutes into the grand opening, they discover the language is in Italian and unsubtitled. Hitting the panic button, McBain, Sprocket and Lisa spend the entire time in the projection room, redubbing the film as it rolls into the Picture Palace, with the audience totally unaware what’s going on.

Written by Des Mangan and directed by David ParkerHercules Returns is straight up laugh-a-minute film which anyone with an IQ will enjoy, with no pressure. Full of visual jokes and a quick throwaway lines, you’ll wonder what the original film would sound like once you complete this entertaining piece of cinematic Australiana.

Five Molly Meldrums

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