15. Highlander

15-highlanderBackground info

Title: Highlander
Director: Russell Mulcahy
Year: 1986
Run time: 1hr 51m

“Conner McLeod (Christopher Lambert- Mortal Kombat, Subway) survives a wound that should kill him in a clan battle in the Scottish Highlands in 1536, and is banished from his village. Years later McLeod is met by Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez (Sean Connery – The Untouchables, The Hunt for Red October), a swordsman who teaches McLeod the truth about himself; he is immortal, one of a race of many who can only die when the head is cut from the body. When one immortal takes the head of another, the loser’s power is absorbed into the winner. Ramirez teaches McLeod the ways of the sword, until he is killed by his gravest foe, the evil Kurgan (Clancy Brown- The Shawshank Redemption) who lusts for the ultimate power of the immortals, “The Prize”; enough power to rule the earth forever. McLeod must fight his way through the centuries until the time of the Gathering, when the few immortals who have survived the ages will come together to fight until only one remains.”

Live blog

0:32 – Queen theme tune equals good film, no matter what happens.
3:55 – I don’t think wrestling really compares to a full scale field battle. One of them involves swords for a start!
5:24 – That man seems like a pre-cursor to Agent Smith. He appeared out of nowhere, smartly dressed, and wears sunglasses.
7:30 – Surely it’s easier to run around than to backflip around? More fun, though, I bet.
8:14 – How long do fire sprinklers go on for? They’ll have a swimming pool rather than a car park soon.
11:20 – What accent is that supposed to be?
13:45 – Did they really have people wondering about playing the bagpipes whilst everyone else was fighting?
16:16 – I don’t know why I think I like this film. I really have very little clue what’s going on.
18:00 – I just realised that’s Celia Imrie! I had no idea.
23:58 – That’s one heck of a sword. I didn’t know they came in bits, though, like lego. Seems like the end would fall off if you flailed it around too much.
32:11 – The weird thing about his accent is that it’s even weird when he’s in Scotland, his homeland. I get that he might have lost it from travelling around a lot, but he talked funny right from the start.
41:44 – And whilst we’re talking about accents – the Spanish/Egyptian man does actually have a Scottish accent. I’m so confused!
44:35 – I wonder why Mr Connery is keen on teaching our Highlander the ropes when eventually they’d be against each other.
53:38 – Oooh, you can knock down castle walls in a sword fight? I wonder why they were so popular back in those days!
56:25 – Where was the Highlander whilst Sean got his head chopped off?
1:10:36 – Isn’t he in Holby City?
1:13:22 – It makes me mildly uncomfortable to see the bad guy with one full sleeve and one bare arm. How oddly one-sided.
1:31:20 – Is there something about being immortal that makes him attractive? Because I don’t see it.
1:43:04 – Rubbish attempt at a one-liner. “What kept you?” Hardly Bruce Willis, is he?
1:48:04 – So, is the prize that he is no longer immortal, and gets to live a normal life, but still has special powers?

Conclusions

I have seen this once, a long while ago, and I remember very little about it. I feel like I should like it because it has Queen songs and involves transcending time which is on a par with time travel.

Perhaps I don’t like this film as much as I thought I did. The Queen music is awesome, obviously. But the sword fights are laboured, the accents are annoying, and it doesn’t really make sense. The gathering, the quickening, the prize, it’s all nonsense! Still, Queen!

Rating: 2/5

 

8 comments

  1. MAD RANDOM TRIVIA FACT: Christopher Lambert is actually Belgian and mimed all his lines which he dubbed later – that’s why he had a weird accent. And yes, even Sean Connery is a bit weird in this one…

    This film is odd, but I kinda like it – I used to visit the castle at the beginning of the film many times, it’s cool.

    I’m not sure why it didn’t make sense to you though – a group of immortals fight for thousands of years to be “the one” who wins the prize of mortality and the ability to have children – after many, many years of pain, suffering and loss of loved ones they probably would view it as a relief to grow old and die. And it has big swords. And Queen 🙂

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  2. Christopher Lambert is actually Belgian and mimed all his lines which he dubbed later – that’s why he had a weird accent.

    Why is his accent different because he dubbed it? Surely he still sounds the same either way?

    I did understand the plot, I just don’t quite get the prize. He said he could hear everyone’s thoughts and stuff. Which seems like he becomes mortal but not really. Weird.

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  3. SiMoN

    This used to be one of my favourite films, however I watched it recently and it seems to have aged rather badly. The soundtrack still rocks though.

    Have you watched Highlander II?
    Not only is it extremely bad, it contradicts the first film in some rather key areas.

    Shame on……..whomever it was that made it.

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  4. Have you watched Highlander II?

    I haven’t, and by your recommendation, I probably won’t!

    Have just glanced on IMDB, and it says they are in the year 2024 and Sean Connery is back in it, somehow. Might give that one I wide berth!

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  5. Steven Roy

    I like the way that most of your comments are questions. No-one else comenting on films does that. I have never seen this film and part of me felt like I was missing something but clearly not.

    Did they really have people wondering about playing the bagpipes whilst everyone else was fighting?

    Yes is the short answer. Even during WW1 and WW2 they not only had pipers playing but it was common for pipers to lead the charge. I don’tthink the career prospects were very good though.

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  6. I think McLeod and Ramirez agreed not to fight each other unless they were the only 2 immortals left.

    Yea, I thought that’s what they said. What I don’t understand is why Sean Connery would even find him in the first place, let alone train him up and teach him everything he needs to know, if at some point he would have to fight him. Why bother? Why not just let him continue in his ignorance?

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