Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Krull: A Synopsis

Since Dr. Girlfriend and I have split our netflix lists into two separate queues, I have taken it upon myself to educate the good doctor in all of the epic 80s movies she missed as a little girl. We already went through the entire Indiana Jones Trilogy, in preparation for the upcoming Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull...

So now we've moved on to 80s fantasy, and I am happy to report that while she didn't appreciate the Dungeons and Dragons-esque 1983 movie Krull, I found it better than I remembered (though, for the record, I remembered it being pretty bad). Here's the synopsis (super spoilertz!!!1!!).

Krull is the story of a happy medieval kingdom of magic and wonder on a far away world, and what happens when that world is invaded by a deep-space faring Satan who flies around in a spaceship castle.

At the beginning, a young prince with sweet chin-stubble and 80's-hair princess are getting married in order to unite the two warring kingdoms under one banner. This is so the relevant kingdom's armies can unite and fight off the "Beast's" alien armies. They make it pretty clear that the alien armies are right on the two kingdom's doorstep, but they still won't fight together until the kids are married. This is some really sticky politics the world of Krull has, and it costs them bigtime, because during the ceremony the aliens attack the castle (with freaking blasters that shoot blue laser beams!) and, with the exception of the prince stubblefield and princess Joan Jet (who they kidnap), kill every single person. Thats every person in the whole castle. Both kings, every knight, every squire, every peasant, every chambermaid.

The prince, fortunately, is just knocked out. On the bright side...hey, new king!

"Old Wise Guy" saunters down from the mountain and nurses the prince back to health. The prince is keen on getting his sweet lady back, but Obi-Wan tells him he can only defeat the big bad guy with the legendary "Glaive." Here's where my first recollection was off. I thought the Glaive was called the "Krull," but Krull is the planet, not the bladed thing. The name Glaive is a little misleading, because from my years of reading D&D manuals I know for absolute certain that a glaive is a huge blade on the end of a pole that orcs and cosplay dorks swing around.

You're welcome Paul.

In any case, the Glaive in Krull is a throwy knife-thing.

The origin of the Krull, shit, "Glaive" is completely glossed over. Its just an ancient weapon from ancient times with ancient power over evil. It doesn't seem very hard to get, as Prince Beardy waltzes up to a cave, sticks his hand in some hot lava, and pulls it out. I don't know what the deal is with the fire-resistant hand, but he gets it again later for no reason.

In any case, he gets the Glaive and you won't see it again for another hour and fifteen minutes. In the meantime Luke Beardwalker and Obi-Wan Bore-nobi start their journey toward Castle SpaceJump. Oh yeah, did I mention the evil guy's castle/spaceship teleports to a random destination on the planet Krull every morning at dawn? Well, it does. So they gotta find out where it'll be before they can go attack it and be completely overmatched by aliens with BLASTERS, so they obviously decide to head to the "Old Seer," so they can go off and get killed storming the castle.

This is where it gets wacky. Like every 80s movie and most early 90s fantasy movies everywhere, a plucky stupid JarJar-style sidekick is required by law. So of course they cross paths with a Monty-Python style clutsy magician who I hated throughout the movie.

Other 'joiners' to the Kingdom of the Sideburns included a group of Bandits (featuring Liam Neeson!), a little kid, and a spear-wielding cyclops named Rell. Rell threw his spear no fewer than four times, hitting dudes who were about to backstab someone every time with perfect accuracy. This kind of throwing accuracy is amazing because Rell shouldn't have any depth perception at all.

In any case, the old Seer gets killed off by Beastie McGee, so they gotta go see an evil spider-lady who can see the future. This is probably the part of the movie everyone with even a remote fear of spiders remembers, because of the awesome-looking white spider that hunts Old Guy as he tries to cross the webbing.

Old guy dies and they find out from the evil spider lady that the castle will appear in the "Iron Desert" in the morning, where it will remain for a day. The party of adventurers shows concern as they inform us that the "Iron Desert" is over 1000 leagues away! I felt it was interesting that nobody pointed out that the "Iron Desert" isn't a very specific location. That's like saying "Know ye prince, that the Castle of the Beast will appear in Kentucky, and stay there for only 24 hours! You must hurry!" If I'm going to kill off my Obiwan Kenobi character for some directions they'd better be given in latitude and longitude.

Fortunately they rope some some super-fast horses and are able to zip to the castle just before it re-teleports. They get inside where just about everyone dies. One thing that is great about the movie is the alien soldier deaths. When stabbed, the alien soldiers die in a very cool way, as they give out the exact same scream noise that R2D2 gives when he's shot by a blaster, and then a worm jumps out of their neck-armor and tunnels into the ground. Totally wierd. The movie is worth a rental just to see that.

Anyway, Sir Beardsalot fights the "Beast" with the Krull, which with he uses the force to make it telekinetically cut the creature a bunch of times. But then it gets stuck in the Beast's body and he can't retrieve it. Oh noes! Now he's powerless! How will he ever fight the Beast now?!

True fucking Love is how. I shit you not. On this crazy planet, somehow when people get married they can form flames in their hands and they trade them in some sort of ceremony. Well, Princess-in-Distress hands her flame to Hiro B. Protagonist and he shoots like a flamethrower out of his hands, melting the beast. Then he proceeds to shoot through the walls of the collapsing castle with his flamethrower-hands, destroying shit everywhere. It really is as surreal and out-of-nowhere as it sounds. True Love = 3rd degree burns. So, basically, newlyweds are the most dangerous people on the planet.

I give it seven Glaives out of nine!