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BEOWULF
Powered by Radio Free Entertainment. G1-0125-13862281

Release: 1999, Buena Vista
Starring: Christopher Lambert, Rhona Mitra
Director: Graham Baker
MPAA Rating: [R] violence, sexuality
Genre: Fantasy/Action

SUMMARY

A wandering warrior named Beowulf (Lambert) comes to a castle plagued with a deadly monster and sets out to slay it. The classical, medieval tale of Beowulf, retold with a techno soundtrack and moderized weaponry.

WHAT'S GOOD

Buxom wenches abound.

WHAT'S BAD

This movie is the epitome of direct-to-video crap. Mix together Mortal Kombat, Army of Darkness, and a couple of Julie Strain movies; add a pinch of Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail for flavor; then bring it all down with the script writing and acting talent of a Troma film, and you've got Beowulf. Scary, huh? During the conception phase of this film, someone must have decided it would be cool to take a book and turn it into a video game. The action is so contrived that Lambert's Beowulf constantly does twenty consecutive flips to get out of the way of the enemy instead of just jumping to the side. I guess it's supposed to look sharp, but it ends up being silly.

There's an attempt to make the female lead a stalwart, independent, '90s heroine, but eventually she whips out a two inch dagger to fight the monster, gets her butt kicked, and needs the man to save her. (If you're going to bother with pro-feminism stuff in a flick like this, at least follow through with it!)

Christopher Lambert's portrayal of Beowulf is, unfortunately, God-awful. He gets bad dialogue ("I must fight evil...to keep from being evil!"), then delivers it in a raspy, ludicrously phony accent. (Anyone else think Phil Hartman and Steve Martin had been genetically spliced together upon first seeing the Beowulf character here?)

Somewhere in this film, there's a story about the infidelity of man and the physical manifestation of evil...but damned if I can find it amidst the synthesizers and succubi.




Our Rating: 4.5 out of 10
Review by: Andrew Manning
Revision Date: 10/98