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Rated R
Copyright 1980 Marcel/Robertson Productions Limited
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Hawk - Noble warrior who uses a special sword powered by elven magics. Apparently it protects and guides him, unfortunately this protection does not extend to his companions.
  • Gort - Giant of a man, he employs an impressive looking maul. Not the sort of thing you want connecting with your brain housing group.
  • Baldin - Dwarf who has some hygiene problems, using a whip to catch raw fish for consumption is among the least of them. Gets a dagger in the ribs and ends up as the dead dwarf in the bubble.
  • Crow - Last of the elves and his archery skills could put William Tell to shame. Whenever he speaks it reminds me of a dimwitted Vulcan.
  • Ranulf - Grizzled fighter with only one hand, he employs a rapid fire crossbow, it actually takes a clip of bolts, much like an assault rifle! Killed by Voltan.
  • Woman - Don't look at me, that is all they ever call her. She is some sort of good witch that Hawk saves from being burned at the stake. Has a bag of glow in the dark tricks up her sleeves.
  • Elaine - Hawk's beautiful (cough) wife, killed by Voltan.
  • Lots of Evil Guys - Dead meat, oh are they ever dead meat.
  • Drogo - Voltan's adopted son who just wanted daddy to respect him as a warrior. Killed by Hawk.
  • Voltan - Jack Palance! Evil brother to the noble Hawk, an iron helm hides the hideous disfigurement of his face caused by Elaine sticking a torch into his eye. Not that anything women do is like having a flaming brand stuck in your socket mind you. Cut down by Hawk.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

The cover art looks pretty average for a sword and sorcery flick and we all expect some goofy "magical" effects, but when those two glowing hula hoops appear all bets are off. Of course Hawk and Ranulf's journey through the haunted forest could be considered fair warning, it's just that the hula hoops mark where I believe the director began dropping acid during shoots.

Years ago Voltan killed the wise and good king, at least I think he was a king. Maybe I'm taking too much for granted, if he was all that wise then he would have tossed his evil brat down a well long ago. Now the wicked swordsman is terrorizing the countryside, burning Ranulf's village and taking the Abbess prisoner. Only a powerful group of heroes can stop the spread of evil and only one man can lead them, Ranulf transforms into a single handed bloodhound and locates Hawk in under two scenes. Using the good witch's magic to quickly assemble a formidable party allows for character development, but some hooded guy walking in and reasoning, "You all meet in a tavern." would have been just as coherent.

Okay, we have our warriors and evil forces to oppose them, what could possibly be missing? (here plot, here plot, come here boy) Hold on a minute, the evil guys want a hefty ransom for the Abbess' safe return, the party will have to battle a group of rich and vicious slavers for the gold. That was little problem, but when Drogo takes it upon himself to confront Hawk a fight ensues and the result (dead Drogo) sets Voltan off.

Jack Palance's character has had a difficult life. First the woman he desires weds Hawk, then she burns half his face off, when he tries to kill his goody goody brother with a crossbow she manages to get in the way and now this, the darn kid he had to adopt and raise as a son (funny thing, no woman wants to marry a guy with scar tissue for the left side of his face) gets sent to the big orphanage in the sky.

Finally the two brothers do cross swords in a very lopsided ticket. Hawk wields the "Elven Mindstone Blade of Jack Palance Slaying and General Whoopass" and the outcome is pretty much a forgone conclusion. The ending almost shoves the idea of sequel in you face, but I can not imagine any act to follow the very special film that is "Hawk the Slayer."

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • The old king will always hang on long enough to bequeath his legacy onto the good son, even after being stabbed through the heart with a sword.
  • Evil armies sing happy little tunes while hacking up women and children.
  • Boa Constrictors live in temperate forests.
  • Witches can summon glowing hula hoops to teleport people across vast distances.
  • Hare Krishnas hate dwarves.
  • Whips are under utilized in sport fishing.
  • Pound for pound you can not beat the entertainment value of watching some dirty little man gnaw on a roast chicken.
  • Evil men keep nuns as pets.
  • A witch's staff is full of silly string, she uses this to blind and immobilize enemies.
  • Nuns would make really fine secret service agents.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 4 mins - Why does a human have the last elfin mindstone?
  • 14 mins - Hawk journeys into the land of background matting.
  • 30 mins - That looks just like Halloween spider web...
  • 42 mins - Baldin did not have any trouble getting free of those ropes, I probably would have done that earlier.
  • 45 mins - "The Iron Hills are no more." says Baldin, you mean that Voltan bulldozed them or something? What force in medieval times went around flattening out hills?
  • 54 mins - You know, for good guys, this group is rather sadistic.
  • 67 mins - Very windy here in the foreground, but notice how all the trees are not moving.
  • 83 mins - Fluorescent bouncy balls! Hehehehe! I almost died from laughter over the next few minutes.

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note hawkslayer1.wav Goofy Guy: "Ohhh dear, I do believe my impetuous friend is challenging you."
Crow: "He wastes his time and mine." (Arrow thwack!)
Green Music Note hawkslayer2.wav Hawk: "And how did the mighty Baldin come to be in this sorry mess?"
Baldin: "Too much wine, a friendly fight or know how it goes. A crack on the skull from a sultry wench, and I wake to find myself at the mercy of these chanting fools!"
Green Music Note hawkslayer3.wav Drogo: "I am no messenger, but I will give you a message. The message of death!"
Green Music Note hawkslayer4.wav Voltan: "Dear brother, I think you and your friends can be persuaded to tell me...believe it, or not!" (Ok, so he didn't actually say that last part.)
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Cliphawkslayer1.mpg - 3.2m
I still cannot believe that they used fluorescent bouncy balls.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 ... 5 6 [7] 8 9 ... 13
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #49. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Jen
Sure the special effects weren't special, and the writing wasn't based on Tolkein, but I love this movie anyway. It is 100% pure entertainment from beginning to end. It is a lot like turkey bacon. Great for what it is, just don't expect it to taste like bacon.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #50. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Rykan
Oh this film DID amuse me; as I kept yelling out, "Pure cheese! Chesse and ham on toast without the toast!" As  awful as it was, I couldn't drag my self away from this awful spectacle! The magic glowing sword, hula hoops and BOUNCY BALLS , and the distinctive amount of blood when people were killed, was enough to keep me watching the whole film XD
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #51. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Mingster
They showed this on the BBC the other night. This is one of those "so bad it's good" films. I have never laughed so hard watching Jack Palance over act in that big helmet. And nothing says medevil england like disco music! This film Rocks!!
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #52. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Evianrhall
Saludos desde España colegas!!

My English is not the best. (so excuse me for the errors)
Im from Spain, Canary islands, exactly Tenerife. Im in true when i say that this movie its very apreciate in the roleplaying comunity of the city of Santa Cruz (tenerife´s capital).
There is anyway to get the soundtrack of this aweson freak movie?, really y need it!!!

This movie is great!, a roleplaying guy khows how to apreciate the movie. Really, tere are very few movies that brings me true diversion, one of this is Hawk the Slayer.

Que en español la han traducido a "La Espada Invencible".

Bye Bye From Tenerife, the land of the sun!!!.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #53. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Collin Pasternack
Man, Hawk THe Slayer is one of the best Sci-Fi movies. I saw it on BBC1 at around 24:00 and couldn't stop laughing. The TV Guide billed it as "Pseudo-Mythical tripe." I really want a DVD release with actors commentary, and deleted (plot) oops, sceenes. As to people saying its a "big pile of crap," well, I wouldn't say so, it takes a lot to make a movie...They were trying their best! Or, maybe they weren't, come to think of it. However, it is a great watch and a lot of fun.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #54. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Mike Smith
I've seen this movie a zillion times.  I wish somebody could tell me why.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #55. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Brian Willard
This film is so bad it's good. I don't recall seeing it on MST3K, but it cries out for that kind of treatment. I think it's a great film, and it shows what kind of fun you can have with a low budget and a truly desperate Jack Palance.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #56. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Goose
I just finished watching this on DVD and thought I'd have a look on the net for a mind sword. Didn't find one but I found this page. Glad I'm not the only closet Hawk fan.

"some people just don't know when to keep their mouth's shut"
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