HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
State Funeral
Army of the Dead
Initiation
Redoubt
Dinner in America
Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes
PG: Psycho Goreman
Maeve
Sound of Metal
Things of Life, The
Auschwitz Escape, The
Jungle Fever
Great White
Spy Who Came in from the Cold, The
Raya and the Last Dragon
Letter from Paris
   
 
Newest Articles
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
   
 
  Highlander There Can Be Only One (Apart From The Others)
Year: 1986
Director: Russell Mulcahy
Stars: Christopher Lambert, Roxanne Hart, Clancy Brown, Sean Connery, Beatie Edney, Alan North, Jon Polito, Sheila Gish, Hugh Quarshie, Christopher Malcolm, Peter Diamond, Billy Hartman, James Cosmo, Celia Imrie, Alistair Findlay, Edward Wiley, James McKenna
Genre: Action, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 4 votes)
Review: New York City in the present day, and there's a wrestling match being staged at Madison Square Gardens, yet while the crowd goes wild for the antics of the combatants, one member of the audience sits still, deep in thought. He is Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert), and he is being reminded of a time when he was a brave warrior - a time four and a half centuries ago, in Scotland. Connor now calls himself Russell Nash and works as an antique dealer, but tonight his past will come back to haunt him as he is confronted in the parking lot by a sword wielding businessman. Luckily, Connor has his own sword on him, and a brutal fight to the death ensues, with Connor the victor - but he has drawn attention to himself, and there are others who will happily see him dead...

Out of the umpteen action adventures released during the nineteen eighties, particularly from Cannon, Highlander was the one of those which unexpectedly found one of the most enduring audiences, particularly in Europe. Written by Gregory Widen, Peter Bellwood and Larry Ferguson, it was sort of a variation on The Terminator, only instead of the heroes and villains from another time hailing from the future, they had arrived from the distant past through sheer longevity. The film seems curiously reluctant to explain itself, stepping back and forward through the years with little concern for continuity, and taking it as read that the viewer will understand who the Immortals are and what they want without bothering to explain to any great extent.

As a result, many found it confusing, but ironically this increased the passion those who did understand felt for the story and its swooningly romantic mixture of love and violence, mostly dispensed at the blade of a mighty sword. After the body of the Immortal is found, sans head, in the parking lot the police are called in, and quickly hold Connor for questioning, but he refuses to talk and they have to release him. Still, the interest of a weapons expert, Brenda Wyatt (Roxanne Hart), is piqued and she ventures back to the scene of the crime to do a spot of sleuthing. There she bumps into Connor, who is retrieving his hidden sword, and a relationship begins thanks to the film's chief villain making an entrance.

He is The Kurgan, played with great relish by a gravel voiced Clancy Brown, and he is determined to chop off Connor's head so he will be well on the way to being the last of the Immortals, and being last gets you a special prize. Connor has met The Kurgan before, on the battlefield in Scotland in the 16th Century, where he was wounded but not killed by his foe. This resulted in Connor (who appears to wear a tablecloth instead of a kilt) being ostracised by his clan and banished for not having the decency to die and therefore a witch of some kind. All this is intercut with the New York scenes with quite some abandon, quite effectively at times, though distractedly in others.

As if that all wasn't preposterous enough, in the past, French Lambert playing a Scotsman with a seriously dodgy accent suddenly meets with Scotsman Sean Connery playing an Spanish Egyptian, and guess which accent he uses? Connery is Ramirez, something of a dandy, who teaches Connor in the ways of the Force (or whatever), and seems solely to have been cast to underline the Scottish connection. Yes, even though he's not Scottish in the film. Hm. Anyway, amid all the blood and thunder, there's space set aside for sentiment, and unexpectedly there is a truly poignant sequence where the long lasting Connor has to outlive Heather (Beatie Edney), his true love. After that it's a return to the action where Connor has to save his, er, next true love Brenda from The Kurgan and those bits are staged with appropriate bombast, but for a film which takes itself so seriously there's a definite sense of daftness threatening to creep in at all times. It's a potent mixture, nonetheless. Music by Michael Kamen and Queen (which isn't a patch on their Flash Gordon soundtrack).

[For the 30th Anniversary Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD from Studio Canal, there are a host of extras for fans and newcomers alike:

• New interview with Russell Mulcahy, lots of reminiscences about his background and what it was like to make
• New interview with Christopher Lambert, ranging from the mystical to the practical, plus an archive interview for good measure
• Deleted scenes
• Making of doc in 4 parts which looks a little older than the new interviews, but is so extensive you probably don't need to listen to...
• Audio commentary with Russell Mulcahy
• and finally an HD trailer]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 6006 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Russell Mulcahy  (1953 - )

Australian director with a flashy visual style. A former music video director - most notably for Duran Duran - Mulcahy made an impact in 1984 with his first real film, the Outback creature feature Razorback. 1986's fantasy thriller Highlander was a big cult hit, and its success led to a foray in Hollywood in the 1990s, which included thrillers Ricochet and The Real McCoy, the superhero yarn The Shadow and the sequel Highlander II: The Quickening. Subsequent work has largely been in TV.

 
Review Comments (2)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: