A and A's Movie A Day

Watching movies until we run out.

Movie 266 – Ator the Fighting Eagle

Ator The Fighting Eagle – November 21st, 2010

If you read yesterday’s reviews you know that we’re sort of on a bad movie streak right now while the folks over at Desert Bus for Hope play the most boring video game ever (that would be Desert Bus) in a charity marathon. It’s sort of a solidarity type thing, even if we can’t directly raise money for the children (though we can point people in their direction and mention that they will dance and sing and put things on their heads for donations). We’re sharing their pain in spirit. With that in mind, we’re watching this piece of trash tonight.

Now, why do we own this? Well, you see, there’s an MST3K episode called Cave Dwellers. It was one of the first episodes I managed to get on tape so I could watch it again and therefore I probably know it better than I know almost any other episode. The movie is about an old dude who creates a magical macguffin and then immediately decides the world isn’t advanced enough for it and it needs to be destroyed. To do that he sends his daughter off to find Ator, a muscle-bound warrior who lives at the Ends of the Earth. Another guy with a big mustache and a silly helmet shows up and demands the macguffin, Ator fights a bunch of dudes, there’s a big snake puppet and eventually he invents a hang glider. It’s all incredibly silly and right at the beginning is a flashback scene that describes Ator’s prior adventures.

When we saw this? We knew it was Ator’s prior adventures and we did indeed need to obtain it. So we’ve got it. We tried to watch it once before and, well, we failed. I don’t remember if we turned it off to go do something else or if we had to go somewhere or if we just couldn’t cope. It’s sort of Ator’s origin story, but we knew better than to expect something epic and Batman-like. Instead we get incest and spiders. Okay, so there’s more than that, but really, it seemed to mostly be a lot of running around waiting for something to happen, but then nothing happens. Until the end. When things happen and then there’s a pretty song about love or something.

As I said, this is an origin story for Ator. According to the movie there’s a prophecy about a guy who’ll try to overthrow the evil high priest of the spider god, but he’ll die and a baby will be born bearing his symbol. Guess who’s born with said symbol? Ator! A mysterious man hides baby Ator with a nice family that already has a baby and Ator and his adopted sister grow up together and end up falling in love. The soldiers of the spider god priest show up and kill a bunch of villagers and kidnap Ator’s sister/wife during their wedding and off he goes to get her back. Along the way he meets a scantily-dressed thief woman and gets in fights and there’s a lot of almost-action. It’s bizarre. We’d watch and there’d be tense music and soldiers and… nothing. The scene would end and the movie would move on to another plot point which would be pretty much the same. Ator gets a fancy sword and a fancy shield and picks up his thieving side-kick and that’s about as much as I can say. The movie left very little impression on me overall. Aside from the Ator-marrying-his-adopted-sister thing.

The thing about this movie is that it’s not aiming high. It’s not trying to be the 2010 Clash of the Titans. It’s more on the level of the older Hercules movies and that’s where it wanted to be. To be honest, the costumes and sets are actually better in this movie than they are in the sequel. There’s a particular helmet in this movie that’s sort of shaped like a bird, and it shows up in the second movie – oddly since it’s not the same character – but it looks a lot crappier. It looks like when making this movie there was actual effort involved. Not a hell of a lot, but at least a modicum. This is not to say that this is a good movie. It’s bad, no mistake. But it could have been so very much worse. It could have been its sequel.

November 21, 2010 - Posted by | daily reviews | , , ,

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