- LULU / PANDORA'S BOX
- DAPHNIS AND CHLOE
- FEDRA
- THE FUGITIVE KIND
- THE TESTAMENT OF ORPHEUS
- PHAEDRA
- HERCULES CONQUERS ATLANTIS
- YOUNG APHRODITES
- CONTEMPT
- PROMETHEUS FROM THE VISEVICE ISLAND
- SANDRA OF A THOUSAND DELIGHTS
- THE GOLDEN THING
- THE TRAVELLING PLAYERS
- EURIDICE BA 2037
- IPHIGENIA
- A DREAM OF PASSION
- CLASH OF THE TITANS
- THE YEARS OF THE BIG HEAT
- ENIOCHUS - THE CHARIOTEER
- ANTIGONE
- EDIPO ALCADE
- THAT'S LIFE
- BLADE RUNNER
- VERTIGO
- MOURNING BECOMES ELECTRA
- ORPHEUS
- PANDORA AND THE FLYING DUTCHMAN
- ULYSSES
- HERACLES AND THE QUEEN OF LYDIA
- BLACK ORPHEUS
- ANTIGONE
- ELECTRA
- JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS
- GORGON
- OEDIPUS REX
- ILLIAC PASSION
- THE CANNIBALS
- EDEA
- NOTES FOR AN AFRICAN ORESTEIA
- FOR ELECTRA
- PROMETHEUS IN THE SECOND PERSON
- VOYAGE TO CYTHERA
- ULYSSES' GAZE
- MATRIX
- O BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU?

JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS
GREAT BRITAIN, 1963


Directed by: Don Chaffey. Art Director: Jan Read, Beverly Cross. Director of Photography: Wilkie Cooper. Special Visual Effects: Ray Harryhausen. Film Editor: Maurice Rootes. Music: Bernard Herrmann. Cast: Todd Armstrong (Jason), Nancy Kovack (Medea), Gary Raymond (Acastus), Laurence Naismith (Argus), Niall MacGinnis (Zeus), Michael Gwynn (Hermes), Douglas Wilmer (Pelias), Jack Gwillim (Aetes), Honor Blackman (Hera), John Cairney (Hylas), Patrick Troughton (Phineas), Andrew Faulds (Phalerus), Nigel Green (Hercules), John Crawford (Polydeuces), Douglas Robinson (Euphemus), Fernardo Poggi (Castor). Production: Morningside Worldwide. Production: Charles H. Schneer. Length: 103 min. Colour.

Twenty years after Pelias has deprived his half-brother Aeson of Thessaly’s sovereignty, Jason, Aeson’s son, demands his rightful crown. To be rid of Jason, Pelias persuades him to fetch the Golden Fleece. Jason, an ambitious soul in the full vigour of youth, cheerfully undertakes the expedition, embarking with all the princely heroes of Greece in the ship Argo. On the way the Argonauts are menaced by a bronze Titan, and leave behind Hercules when he goes in search of his friend Hylas; they next deliver the blind seer Phineas from the persecution of the Harpies. Approaching the dangerous Symplegades, two mobile, crushing sea-rocks, they are saved by the intervention of the goddess Hera, who sends a Triton to prop up the crumbling rocks. Guided by their new passenger Medea, priestess-daughter of King Aetes, they at last arrive in far-off Colchis. Aetes condemns Jason to death, but Medea frees him and leads him to the grove where the seven-headed Hydra guards the Fleece. Acastus, Pelias’ treacherous son, dies attempting to steal the Fleece from Hydra, which is itself slain by Jason. Aetes retaliates by sowing the Hydra’s teeth, and the armed skeletons which spring forth from the soil attack the Argonauts. After a fierce and successful battle, Jason returns to Thessaly with the Fleece and Medea.

Enjoyable
Enjoyable more for its special effects than for any overall directorial flair, this action-packed fable has the good sense to rely on the ample incident provided by the original chroniclers. The gigantic bronze Titan which rips the Argo to shreds is one of the film’s very few extraneities, and its jerky movement belongs to the more pedantic realm of monster movies. Otherwise the trick-work is both compelling and funny, notably the fish-tailed Triton dressed in crown, beard and loin-towel, and the armed skeletons popping up through the ground like bad-tempered moles. The colour is often bleary; Todd Armstrong is an uninspiring Jason; the Fleece looks like a bespangled hearth-rug, and Olympus like an airport control-tower complete with aqueous television set and bored and bickering staff. But if anything such shortcomings add to the run of a film whose tradition is that of Mlis and Flash Gordon rather than Lang and Siegfried. Bernard Herrmann’s characteristic score adds a touch of distinction.

"Monthly Film Bulletin", Vol. 30, No. 356, September 1963