The Black Archer (1959)
The Avenging Arrow
Have you ever started to watch a movie and lost the will to live pretty much as soon as it started. That was the case when I sat down to watch "The Black Archer", aka "L'arciere nero", a movie which I had absolutely no idea what it was about other than it was an Italian sword-and-sandal movie from the late 50s. The opening scene which features the most inept sword battle was so terrible that the temptation to walk away was almost irresistible.
Anyway what we have here is the story of Corrado (Gérard Landry) a legendary archer who is a pain in the butt to some well off dudes. Those well off dudes appear to have a team of masked men & women, hitmen hunting Corrado down. And there is plenty of ill at ease deception going on in the wealthy dude's home as cousins don't like cousins as some scheme and others pout.
I should apologies for that abysmal synopsis but "The Black Archer" is so dull and so cliche that it is a chore to stay interested and impossible to show any enthusiasm for. It also doesn't help matters that for a sword-and-sandal movie the action is minimal and so what you get is people talking and talking and talking yet none of it being interesting. Admittedly it doesn't help matters that the version of "The Black Archer" I got to watch was a dubbed version so we have voices which not only don't match the lips but don't fit the characters either.
There are two things which keep me from saying that "The Black Archer" is unwatchable and the first of those is Fulvia Franco who is attractive as the gypsy girl. And the second is that at least the sets and costumes look good if nothing else does.
What this all boils down to is that "The Black Archer" is a bad movie and one which I am sure is made worse by the poor dubbing which I had to put up with. But even when you ignore the mismatched voices the cliche ridden adventure movie with so little adventure and action ends up dull and hard work.
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