UCM.ONE today releases on the M-Square Classics label the film “Amazons” (German title: Im Reich der Amazonen”) for the first time in the new restored original US-HD version as a limited media book with DVD and Blu-Ray together with a 16-page booklet. The film “Amazons” is a rarer science fiction and fantasy film from the…
The film “Amazons” (German title: “Im Reich der Amazonen“) is a rare science fiction and fantasy film from the forge of Roger Corman from the USA. UCM.ONE releases the film, also known as “Amazon”, for the first time on the M-Square Classics label in the new restored original US-HD version as a limited media book with DVD and Blu-Ray together with a 16-page booklet.
The wild, beautiful Amazon warrior Dyala (Mindi Miller) wants to save her people, who suffer from two cold-blooded enemies: The villainous Emperor Kalungo (Joseph Whipp), who has magic powers, and Dyala’s evil mother. For her fierce fight for liberation she needs the holy sword of her ancestor, Azundati. In their search for this powerful artefact, she and her companion Tashi (Penelope Reed), who has joined this difficult endeavour despite initial mistrust, face numerous dangers that both have to master with their martial arts…
About Alejandro Sessa:
Alejandro Sessa, born on 19 June 1928, began his film career in 1981 when he produced his first film “Abierto día y noche“. The script of the comedy directed by Fernando Ayala was written by director Héctor Olivera, with whom Sessa worked several times in the following years. In 1983, under his pseudonym Alex Sessa, he produced a cult film of the 1980s’ barbarian film wave: “Deathstalker“, followed by “Funny Dirty Little War” (1983) and “Pasajeros de una pesadilla” (1984). In the same year he co-produced another fantasy trash pearl with “The Warrior and the Sorceress“. Here David Carradine appeared in full muscular splendour in front of the camera. He remained true to the fantasy genre in 1985, too, and so he produced two more fantasy flicks with his companion Héctor Olivera that year: “Barbarian Queen” and “Wizards of the Lost Kingdom“. One year later he made his directing debut with “Amazons“, but was to leave the director’s chair after “Stormquest” (1987).
In 1989 he reunited with Olivera as producer of “Two to Tango” and in 1991 he appeared as co-producer for one of his most famous films “Highlander II – The Quickening“. He then produced 200 episodes of the TV series “El árbol azul“. Alejandro Sessa died a few years later in Buenos Aires. He was 70 years old.
Like many fantasy trash gems of the 1980s, “Amazons” features a colourful ensemble of less successful yet remarkable performers, starting with leading actress Mindi Miller.
Miller took on her first role in the Sci-Fi cult film “Westworld” in 1973, unmentioned as “Girl in the Saloon“, and in the same year – mentioned by name for the first time – played a bikini girl in “Hell up in Harlem“. One of her longest engagements was as a Revel in “Switch“, where she played alongside Robert Wagner in several episodes. In the middle of the 1980s she spent some time as an erotic actress under the pseudonym Ty Randolph and played her first and only leading role in “Amazons“. As an experienced karate fighter, and as the daughter of a stuntman trained in the use of firearms, swords and riding, she always chose not to use a double for all her stunts. She ended her acting career after only 32 roles in 1991.
The careers of Danitza Kingsley and Penelope Reed also ended rather quickly with twelve and nine roles respectively, although Penelope Reed retired from acting in the early 1990s to concentrate on her family.
With over 100 roles in film and TV, only Joseph Whipp can look back on a more successful career. After his TV debut in 1963 in “General Hospital” and his first film role as a prison guard in “Escape from Alcatraz” (1979) with Clint Eastwood in the leading role, it was especially the role of the policeman that he slipped into again and again over the decades. His most famous films include “Nightmare on Elm Street“, but he also appeared in the horror classic “The Hidden” (1987), this time not as a policeman but in the role of Dr. Rogers.
After dozens of TV roles, he again put on the police uniform in Wes Craven‘s “Scream” in 1991. With supporting roles in smaller films and various series, television remains his main field of activity to this day. His last appearance so far was in an episode of “Criminal Minds” in 2014.
Original title: Amazons
Director: Alejandro Sessa
Screenplay: Charles Saunders
Actor & actresses: Mindi Miller, Penelope Reed, Joseph Whipp, Danitza Kingsley, Wolfram Hecht, Jacques Arndt, Charles Finch, Francisco Cocuzza, Santiago Mallo, Anita Larronde, Armando Capo, Maria Fournery, Noëlle Balfour, Esther Velázquez, Marcos Woinsky, Fabiana Smith, Lena Marie Johansson, Linda Guzmán, Alberto Marty, William Reta, Arturo Noal, Hugo Quiril
Producer: Roger Corman, Héctor Olivera
Co-producer: Frank K. Isaac
Cinematography: Leonardo Rodríguez Solís
Camera & electrical departement: Miguel Amengual, Juan José Fabio, Federico Fernández, Ever Latour, Andrés Nielsen, Hans Ritter, Alejandro Santana, Sergio Sessa, George Suner
Sound: Norberto Castronuovo, Modesto Diminutto
Special effects: Raul ‘Momo’ Cardillo, Willy Smith
Stunts: Arturo Noal
Art Director: María Julia Bertotto
Makeup departament: María Laura López, Rodolfo Spinetta
Casting: Morgan Smith
Music: Óscar Cardozo Ocampo
Production company: Aries Films International, New Horizons Picture, Rise Wrestling
Year of production: 1986
Genres: Action, Fantasy, Abenteuer
Length: 76 Min
Rating: FSK 18
Aspect ratio: 1.85 : 1
German Im Reich der Amazonen
Spanish: El enigma del talismán
Portuguese: As Amazonas, Fúria das Amazonas
Start USA: October 29, 1986
Mediabook-Start (Blu-Ray & DVD) Germany: October 23, 2020
VoD-Start Germany: November 27, 2020
Swords, Wizards, Barbarians – Fantasy Cult of the 1980s:
In 1982, a genre emerged that would flood the cinema screens with pure testosterone for a decade and well into the 1990s: The Barbarian Film. Probably the best-known representative of the genre is “Conan the Barbarian” from 1982, which marked Arnold Schwarzenegger’s breakthrough in the film industry, was continued two years later and was remade in 2011. And after Arnold Schwarzenegger took the sword of the god Krom to oppose the evil snake cult with thief Subotai and warrior Valeria, dozens of wild men and women, mostly scantily clothed, conquered the cinema and TV screens.
Alongside the barbarian film, the 1980s were to become the decade of the fantastic film in general. This was already foreshadowed a year earlier with Terry Gilliam‘s “Time Bandits” (1981) or “Excalibur” (1981) and continued with classics such as “The Last Unicorn” (1982), “Krull” (1983), “The Never-Ending Story” (1984), “Ladyhawke“, “Legend” (1985), “The Princess Bride” (1987) or “Willow” (1988). However, it was not only lavish and expensive productions that fans of the fantastic could enjoy, the decade also produced some gems of trash cinema, with which directors and producers such as Jim Wynorksi or Roger Corman made a name for themselves. Movies like “Ator, the Fighting Eagle” (1982), “Sorceress” (1982) or “Deathstalker” (1983) fascinate with bad dialogues, lousy effects and clichéd fantasy portrayals, but that is exactly why they are so popular with trash fans.
Amazons | Original Trailer (1986)
“In spite of the holes in the story, the bad acting and the bad fights, the characters are loveable through and through.” (WilliamPinfold.com)
“The film is a good example of really bad filmmaking, but at times so hilarious that it brings tears to your eyes. There are also lots of bare breasts.“ (eFilmcritic.com)
“The acting is absurd, although all the performers take themselves terribly seriously. But that makes it even funnier.” (satanicpandemonium.blogspot.com)
“Right at the beginning you can see bouncing breasts of half-naked women on horses.” (Weirdwildrealm.com)
“It will please all those who want to see women in barbarian bikinis slaughtering men…” (Goldenpigsy.blogspot.com)
“Fantasy film with a fortunately rather high trash factor … and a good portion of naked skin.” (senseofview.de)
“Oh, I wish the eighties had never gone by. One successful fantasy film hits the cinema and B-movie producers around the world spend years creating simple adventure films in which muscle men, scantily clad women and cheaply masked creatures have to find the legendary object X and defeat the evil wizard Y.” (wilsonsdachboden.com)
“Amazons” is an entertaining work for adventure and Amazon fans. Those who like to watch attractive ladies in tight outfits fighting will get their money’s worth here.” (retro-film.info)
Equipment and technical data of the Mediabook
Film in the reconstructed HD-US version, 16-page booklet | Picture format: DVD WS 1.85:1 anamorphic; Blu-Ray WS 1.85:1 &1080p 24fps | Total running time Blu-Ray 76 min & 88 min (integral version), DVD 72 min | Sound format: German DVD DD 2.0, English DD 2. 0, Blu-Ray German DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0, English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 | Extras: Two original trailers, artwork gallery, on Blu-Ray the longer integral version (combination of the new HD version with the additional scenes of the old German version. With 88 min. a whole 12 minutes longer than the US version), on DVD the longer, alternative German cut version with 85 min. in the original 4:3 Open Matted VHS picture format | FSK 18