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Wizards of the Demon Sword (1991)



Reviews and Comments

Wizards of the Demon Sword is a wretchedly bad movie, more than worthy of my lowest rating. At the same time, I'm reluctant to slam it too hard in this review, because it has such a self-effacing sense of humor about it. You can't have one of the characters say, "You take a right at the last outpost of humanity," without some awareness that this is campy. Bad movie or not, it's easy to tell the cast is having fun, and somehow that makes it harder to come down on the final product.

It is not so self-aware, however, that it knows it's a bad movie. If it had, it would have redeemed itself enough to ascend my rating scale somewhat, but I'm not convinced the crew wasn't trying to make a good movie and failing miserably.

And then, on the other hand, this is a pretty amusing bad movie, and there are lots of laughs at its expense. The best part is the insanely overblown dialogue, where the characters have casual conversations with each other that cram in so many dramatic adjectives and metaphors that I had to laugh in spite of myself. "Are you telling me," the hero says, "I've wandered into his evil realm of corruption?" The heroine replies: "Yes. And each day the fingers of his iron hand reach farther across the land, spreading a blight of misery and destruction." At another moment, the heroine very calmly considers that she may have been possessed by an evil spirit: "If I was possessed by Khoura or one of his evil minions, surely they know of my intent to penetrate the dark domain and free my beloved father." This is fairly typical of the dialogue. At one point someone even refers to "the evil castle of the evil warlord." Yeesh.

This movie also contains my vote for most insidious comeback. The villain is told, "You will suffer the fires of eternal damnation for this." The villain coolly returns: "I am eternal damnation."

The movie makes no sense. Directing flaws abound. A man is chased down a hallway and hides in a nook. The badguys rush right by. The trouble is, his shadow was cast on the floor in plain view, and only a blind man would be unaware of his presence. I presume the shadow was an artsy way of informing the audience where he was. How pathetic for such simple things to backfire so forcefully.

If you like laughing at bad movies, Wizards of the Demon Sword is a great choice. But if you're hoping for something better than drudge, you may be in for a nasty and painful shock.