A band of medieval mercenaries take revenge on a noble lord who decides not to pay them by kidnapping the betrothed of the noble’s son.
Murder, pillaging, rape and revenge! One of those (back in the day), “thank god for uncensored late night cable television” movies. I was very excited to see this again, and i was not disappointed. I remember it being a lot “darker”…
One of the first masterpieces of director Paul Verhoeven, who would later give us: RoboCop (1987), Total Recall (1990), Basic Instinct (1992) - a re-make of his 1st hit De vierde man (1983), Starship Troopers (1997) and Hollow Man (2000).
Rutger Hauer stars as “the chosen one” Martin, leader of the bandits. One of his most memorable performances ever! Most people know him as the bad-ass “Roy Batty” from the sci-fi cult classic Blade Runner (1982).
And joining Hauer as the “villains you love to hate” is Brion James, who played “Leon” in Blade Runner (1982).
The beautiful and very young Jennifer Jason Leigh had me at hello, when i first saw this. Demure princess turned sex fiend.
Sexually charged with violent visuals, wrapped together by folklore and religious destiny. I think the tagline best describes the films 3 (major) conflicts:
Betrayed by Power: The relationship of the mercenaries vs. the crown
Corrupted by Love: The relationship of captor and hostage (Stockholm syndrome)
Bound by Honor: The relationship of between rebel and hero.
An absolute treat to re-visit! I forgot how good the prosthetic/special effect details were. And of course the unforgettable story, I remembered the “noose” and “mangrove” scenes, and the innovative tools/knowledge used by the young Steven (hero), to infiltrate the castle.
If you remember this, i suggest you watch it again. Medieval life has never been so true, brutal and beautiful. There are a bit of funny lines/dialogue, hey man it was the 80s.
If you haven’t seen it, i suggest you grab a copy and check it out. Especially if you like action, drama, adventure/tales from the middle ages, with sexual content and violence.
“Everything is predestined. Life runs its own course. Look at this little angel! Saint Martin has sent us a little angel to play with!”