Had not seen this since my early 20s and it's clear that I simply didn't appreciate it at the time. Most of my foray into Fulci's oeuvre at that point was more in his overt horror films, and the artistry here escaped me. Given the film's proclivity towards bodily fluids at all the right moments, I'm surprised I didn't like it more back then. Well, what Fulci and co. have crafted here is such a singular aesthetic that perfectly and unapologetically grafts itself onto the sword and sandal, fantasy epic that is an obvious post-Conan cash grab. By obfuscating any direct logic rooted in realism or traditional narrative framing, Fulci creates an otherworldly experience, one in which its lucidity of vision is rooted in the fantastical and nothing else. Is it hard to follow, sure? does it matter? nope! Watching films like this are a constant reminder of the type of ingenuity and clarity of vision that can be embraced beyond traditional modes of narrative storytelling and IP building and the whole industry is honestly depressing at the current moment. This type of visual mosaic is cinema baby!
Love of all things cinema brought me here.