Director: Enzo G. Castellari
Kino Lorber

The Incredible Hulk returns to smash his way through mythology in the campy Cannon International Italian fantasy SINBAD OF THE SEVEN SEAS, on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber.

Returning home from a sea so that Prince Ali (Roland Wybenga, THE SPIDER LABYRINTH) can wed the Princess Alina (Alessandra Martines, later Lamberto Bava's FANTAGHIRO), Sinbad (Lou Ferrigno) and his crew – Chinese soldier of fortune Cantu (Hal Yamanouchi, PHANTOM OF DEATH), a Viking (the director's stuntman brother Ennio Girolami, ESCAPE FROM THE BRONX), cook Ahmed (Yehuda Efroni, PHANTOM OF THE OPERA), and midget Poochi (Cork Hubbert, LEGEND) – discover the city of Basra in chaos since the evil sorcerer Jaffar (John Steiner, TENEBRAE) has banished the four sacred gems across the sea, mesmerized the Calif (Donald Hodson, LADYHAWKE) and taken Alina with the intention of wedding her. Sinbad and his crew manage to escape torture in the palace's dungeon and back to sea in search of the gems, learning from an oracle that one is on the Isle of Warrior Women in the possession of the Amazon Queen Farida (Melonee Rodgers, HAMMERHEAD) whose charms no man can resist, two are on the Isle of the Dead in the possession of the Ghost King and a more formidable beast, and the a swallow shall lead them to the fourth and their greatest peril. As Sinbad and his men make their journey – with some added help by bumbling vizier Nadir (Leo Gullotta) and his spunky daughter Kyra (the director's daughter Stefania Girolami, 1900: BRONX WARRIORS) – Jaffar and fellow sorceress Soukra (bodybuilder Teagan Clive, OBSESSION: A TASTE FOR FEAR) watch from his lair where he has built a machine designed to weaken Alina's resistance to him.

Although it takes as its basis Edgar Allan Poe's "The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade" as announced in a preamble, SINBAD OF THE SEVEN SEAS seems more influenced by FLASH GORDAN and MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE than the original Italian peplum and the sword and sorcery films of the 1980s or even Cannon's own THE BARBARIANS. The last of four collaborations between Ferrigno and Cannon Films made in the waning days of the company after THE SEVEN MAGNIFICENT GLADIATORS and their duo of Hercules films from the early part of the decade, SINBAD looks the cheapest of the them, thrown together from whatever was available. Skirmishes with "the Legions of Death", ghosts in armor, rock monsters, slime monsters, and some zombies – designed by Maurizio Trani but looking more DAWN OF THE MUMMY than ZOMBIE or even BURIAL GROUND – are laughable, but this time Ferrigno's acting is overshadowed by the usually good Steiner's over-the-top villain. Besides Castellari, IMDb credits additional direction to Tim Kincaid (BREEDERS) and Luigi Cozzi (CONTAMINATION), and the work of the latter seems evident in possibly recycled optical effects from Cozzi's THE BLACK CAT (the Earth from space), PHENOMENA (the darkness spreading over the sky looks like the coffee ground fly swarm), while the whole bookending segments with Daria Nicolodi (OPERA) reading the story as a bedtime tale to Cozzi's daughter Giada who appeared the same year together in Cozzi's PAGANNIN HORROR (which Nicolodi scripted along with THE BLACK CAT). The garish sets look cheap under the gauzy cinematography of multi-nominated Blasco Giurato (CINEMA PARADISO), and it appears as though the final fight between Sinbad's men and Jaffar's soldiers looks like it takes place in the courtyard of a Venetian palazzo rather than an Arabian one.

Released direct to video by Cannon, SINBAD OF THE SEVEN SEAS first surfaced on DVD from MGM in 2005 and it appears that the same HD master has been utilized for Kino's 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.85:1 widescreen Blu-ray. Colors are rich but detail is subject not only to the age of the master but diffusion in some of the outdoor daytime sequences and the some grainy optical composites (a couple of which as mentioned above may have been recycled from earlier productions). The DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 stereo track gives spread to the synth score of Dov Seltzer (THE AMBASSADOR), sound effects, and opticals but this mix compares poorly to those of similar fantasy films of the period. Optional English SDH subtitles are provided. The only extras are the film's theatrical trailer (1:09) and trailers for the more genuinely epic THE VIKINGS, KINGS OF THE SUN, and FLESH + BLOOD. (Eric Cotenas)