My brother has great taste in movies, so when he asked me to watch one of his favorites I jumped at the chance. Normally telling you the hows of getting the movie isn’t important in a review but I feel it adds to the whole experience. He knows I like action movies so he told me to check out Highlander and review it, to see if I would like it as much as he does. I didn’t know he was into fantasy foreign films but I went with it.
He gave me a VHS tape and told me to watch it at night so I did. The tape apparently survived some kind of flood because the cardboard case was majorly warped and the tape itself had a Frankenstein kind of look to it like it had been repaired. When I put it in the VCR it sounded like a plane taking off but it settled down when the movie got going. What he didn’t tell me was that this was in some European language I couldn’t decipher with no subtitles and it was more of an art piece than anything else. I wasn’t sure why he had me watch me this movie or why he liked it but after the movie I realized how original of an idea this story was. But I figured, I should get more culture and not every movie has to be Missing In Action (the greatest action movies you haven’t seen). And I learned a lot about foreign films by watching Highlander. This movie has crazy special effects, cosplay, which I’ll get into later, sword fighting, and a 1980′s pro-wrestling finale. There really isn’t anything not to love about this movie. My only complaint is there not being any subtitles but if you watch it carefully, figuring out the plot isn’t terribly hard.
The movie opens with our main character portrayed by Christopher Lambert (who I will call Two socks) sitting on a rock with a woman who I assume was his girlfriend or wife and they seem pretty happy. My assumption here is that he was with his wife they took some acid and this is some kind of hallucination or maybe some sort of Total Recall/Inception thing where you don’t know if you’re in their shared dream the whole movie. I would like to mention as a side note that Christopher Lambert is the best actor that never made it. He actually is a very good actor but has been in movies like Mortal Kombat, Loaded Weapon 1, and Gunmen. I feel that he is one of the unsung heroes of cinema.
Back to the movie, it cuts to an acid trip of some kind where some sort of energies are swirling around flying in and out of him, which looks like some D&D wet dream. Suddenly, he is holding what we find out soon is a magic sword that materialized from the energy gang bang we just witnessed. The sword can put heads back on decapitated corpses thus reanimating them. Two socks used the sword to bring a dead biker back to life portrayed by Clancy Brown. At first I’m thinking why would he do that and who is this guy? I inferred that the sword wants to be the master life giving sword so it needs to make other life giving swords to be wielded by dead men that it brought back to life. When the men are brought back to life they are very confused and violent so they have to fight until they calm down. I know this is pretty deep stuff here. So apparently, Lambert is the only living man that can wield a life bringing sword that wants to be the master sword so he needs to bring men back to life to wield other magic swords. The deal is that they can live as long as they go out and bring others back to life. I think I understand where Pay It Forward got it’s plot. So they fight and fly up to the roof (they can do anything at this point, I mean if they can put heads back on bodies flight isn’t implausible) and the biker runs away and returns Two socks’ wife to their apartment, because the biker is a gentleman in disguise.
After that, Two socks and his wife make love then they put their clothes back on and she stabs him in the chest (I couldn’t even tell you how many times that has happened to me). I think this symbolizes him having to be dead to wield the master life giving sword indefinitely so his wife killing him is the most loving and intimate thing she could do. She gave him up so the sword can be the master life giver thus making the world a better place. I don’t consider myself emotional but I cried a little at this part because it was touching.
I don’t want to go through the entire plot of this movie in this review but it’s hard not to considering the complexity of the plot and depth of character development. But I will touch on some parts and actors I really enjoyed. Firstly, Hugh Quarshie plays a dead man brought to life by the biker and is an old friend of Two socks. Also we have Sean Connery in his second most homoerotic costume:
Connery is another man, who I will refer to as Peacock, brought back to life by the biker during some cosplay. At this point I assume the biker is Two socks’ main disciple. After that Peacock and the biker (who is currently dressed like some kind of black knight) use their combined energies to put a building back together and the biker leaves to help others.
There is a lot more to this movie that you will have to see to believe, but I will say that the ending does have a wrestling match featuring the Fabulous Freebirds.
In short, this art film was mind blowing and very confusing, but if you can suspend the disbelief and if you can forgive the lack of subtitles, this was a very good film with a lot of deep meaning. This film taught me to celebrate life and a belief in magic.