US movie (1982). Rank/Sorcerer Productions/Group One. Pr Brandon Chase, Marianne Chase. Exec pr Robert S Bremson. Dir Albert Pyun. Spfx sv John Carter. Screenplay Tom Karnowski, Pyun, John Stuckmeyer. Novelization The Sword and the Sorcerer * (1982) by Norman Winski. Starring Kathleen Beller (Alana), Anna Bjorn (Elizabeth), Lee Horsley (Talon), Richard Lynch (Titus Cromwell), Simon MacCorkindale (Mikah), George Maharis (Machelli), Richard Moll (Xusia). 99 mins. Colour.
Charmless, gory Sword and Sorcery epic, intended as first in a series, set in a Land of Fable. Nasty Cromwell, with the aid of raised-from-the-dead sorcerer (> Sorcery; Wizards) Xusia, usurps the throne of King Richard's great kingdom, and subdues the surrounding kingdoms. Richard's youthful son Talon survives, and 11 years later is a mercenary renowned worldwide for saving kingdoms; distant relatives Mikah and Mikah's sister Alana plot rebellion. Alana is threatened with rape regularly and consequently knees a lot of groins. Sinister Machelli, Cromwell's chancellor, is in fact the Shapeshifting Xusia, as is revealed to us when Alana knees him in the groin and he doesn't flinch. Blood flows as Talon, bearing his father's weird triple-bladed Sword, backed by mercenaries with names like Darius, Philip and Captain Morgan, slays Cromwell and Xusia, gives Mikah the crown, screws Alana, and rejoins the carefree mercenary life, galloping off into the land of unmade sequels.
The plotting and dialogue seem drawn direct from role-playing gamebooks, and clichés proliferate; periodically carnage is presented as a dance, as if we should admire the sadistic aesthetics of mutilation. [JG]