THE GIANTS OF THESSALY (1960)
Direction: Riccardo Freda
Writers: Giuseppe Masini (screenplay), Mario Rossetti (screenplay)
Actors: Roland Carey, Ziva Rodann, Alberto Farnese
In order to placate the angry gods, who have allowed Thessaly to be overrun with barbarian invaders and beset with natural disasters, King Jason takes his Argonauts on a search for the fabled Golden Fleece. Meanwhile, back at home, his scheming regent is plotting to get his hands on the kingdom–and the queen.
The film begins with Thessaly being overrun by giants sent by the gods to destroy mankind, and, oh yeah, a volcano, too. In order to placate the gods, King Giasone (Jason) of Iolco (Iolcus) gathers the Argonauts to travel in search of the Golden Fleece. Along the way, they stop at Lemnos, where witches have killed all the island’s men and turn some of the Argonauts into animals. They also have a run-in with a cyclops. Finally, they reach the land where the Golden Fleece is kept, and Giasone seizes it by climbing a large statue. Meanwhile, back in Thessaly a scheming regent named Adrasto plots with Giasone’s wife, Creusa, to steal the throne. Giasone successfully retakes the throne of Iolco, and somehow the movie ends up devoting its remaining time to Orfeo’s (Orpheus’) death scene and Atalanta’s marriage.