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need more Catman!

Deathstalker Reduxed...Badly

Wrapping up another Birthday Smithee movie write-up, here's the low down on Barbarian.



This was watched for the Sultan's Wife, or Uber-bimbette as she is credited, for the Smith-ka-teers pick a movie birthday movie. Since The Sultana (which we might not actually call her but we do have an icon for) is a native of Britain, we though it only fitting we combine a proper British dinner with the watching of the movie. Sadly, we were too lazy to roust up some bangers and mash and since we had Pasties (short flat 'a' as in cat, not long vibrant 'a' as in way too much skin) half baked and frozen, we ate those instead. Hey, Cornwall is English-y yeah? We did make some bread pudding for dessert and although it probably wasn't the best bread pudding this side of the puddle, it sure had the most brandied of raisins in it that I've ever eaten. Whoooo!

And here I am front loading the review with all the good things, for after we dug into our pasties we started up the movie. LeSigh. On the other hand, upon going to the Smithee site to look up Deathstalker, I see that I can yoink the synopsis, change it a little and use it for Barbarian. Check it out:


Deathstalker Kane is a barbarian. He fights people, and things. He has sex with women. He ends up at a great contest of warriors. He wins the contest, and destroys the magic items belonging to stolen by the evil wizard who staged the contest. To paraphrase Matt, the plot consisted pretty much entirely of (a) leather, and (b) breasts comma naked.


Oh but there were a lot of things we "enjoyed" about this movie. When we started it up, we found there was not one, not two but three previews for the Harry Crum directed medieval sword and sorcery movie Barbarian! You know, the movie we were going to watch anyway? At least we got to say "Hey! It's the scene where he does the rolly bit with the sword from the preview!" or "Ahhh, she must be the dual wielding horseback riding Amazon from the previews, wonder when she gets that second sword?" Also, for whatever other reason, our copy was subtitled in Dutch although the dialog was in English. The Guru and the Promotions Ninja have retained a goodly portion of their German and if you know English and if you know German, Dutch is weirdly readable. On the other hand, if you don't know German or Dutch, then you might be a bit taken aback by the subbed "konnt" showing up during the harem scene cat fight. It's not what it looks, (it's the third person singular of 'koennen' or 'could') but dang is it amusingly placed.

Also amusing us was the interplay between the evil wizard (performance phoned in by Martin Kove) and his manpanion, the fashionable and mincing man in waiting. Subtext galore! (And I'm not talking the Dutch either.)

Then there was the montage explaining the whole back story blah blah which was told primarily in clips from Deathstalker. Hello guy with the tattoo that migrated across your head! We miss your impeccable acting. Also if you missed the mud wrestling orgy scene from Deathstalker fear not, it's in here as well. Other strange highlights included some weirdly placed time-lapse clouds. And some more weirdly placed time-lapse clouds. And Wooby.

Take the least endearing qualities of an Ewok and cross them with the least endearing qualities of Snarf from Thundercats and you will have Wooby. Why is there a child actor in an egregiously fake fur suit in this movie? Why can't Woobie speak without the "cute" gurgles, purrs, snuffles and woofs? Why does this character even exist, other than it is small and can fit through the bizarre tunnel system in the castle walls? At one point in time Wooby is badly wounded somehow (another point we won't get into) and everyone in the movie has their sad but concerned "A character will die" face on (we had our happy "Can we get rid of this annoyance?" faces on). Wooby crawls over to some plants, lops off a leaf, sings to it and puts it over the wound. Wala! The gaping wound is completely healed! (huh?) The two main characters sigh a sigh of non Wooby death relief and say in their best sitcom voices "Oh Wooby." Huh?

I guess if you like a lot of random bare chested muscly Michael O'Hearn or a lot of random boobies or a lot of acting that makes a High School performance look Oscar worthy than this is your movie. This movie's only redeeming quality, besides prompting us to eat delicious food, was some of the behind the scenes bits I found from iMDB: Apparently, "In the opening title sequence, several nonspeaking extras or bit players are credited as if they were principals simply because their English-looking names would be more easily readable by American viewers." Straight from the iMDB's mouth.


Personally, I'd recommend renting and watching Deathstalker since it's the same thing but better.

Comments

Oooh, pasties. I think I'll make them tonight.

Oooh, Deathstalker. I think I'll... no, I won't.