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IN THE NAME OF THE KING:
A DUNGEON SIEGE TALE
REVIEWED

In the Name of the King:  A (etc.), is a film that throws more questions at the audience than answers: Why doesn't Burt Reynolds' helmet ever seem to fit and what's going on with that eyebrow?  Why is Ray Liotta dressed like a metrosexual pimp when everybody else seems to have shopped at a Tolkein thrift store?  Did Leelee Sobieski simply keep her costume from Joan of Arc on a hanger for the last eight years?  How does Uwe Boll keep making movies and why would Liotta, Sobieski, and Jason Statham appear in them?  I'm not so confused about Reynolds.

So, anyway, The Transporter is friends with Hellboy until the Orcs show up with their newly acquired team-building skills as administered by Magus Saruman Liotta and much to the disgust of Magus Gimli Treebeard Rhys-Davies.  Then a generic little Anakin-stand-in gets stalked by a Black Rider and the Transporter has to Crank up a War between Shaggy and The Bandit in order to free the Green Street Hooligans chick.  Now I realize that most actors have had past roles and many movies resemble others that came before them, but In the Name of (etc.) has so little character of its own, and so very little effort seems to have been made to establish any, that it's hard not to focus on virtually anything other than the movie itself.

That is, except for the stuff that's simply fixating in this visual mélange.  Like the ninja assassins in Stroker Ace's medieval army - wearing slinky black socks in the forest so they can nimbly grip bark while redundantly climbing trees before jumping down again just in time to engage the enemy like regular boot-footed soldiers.  And even they pale in comparison to the audition hungry Peter Pan-tomime troop of Cirque du Soleil wannabee elf-girls and their endless supply of every-girl's-best-friend prehensile vines.

Two things stick in my mind about watching In the (etc.) last night: One was a general commentary about the state of the industry as I showed up to the theater and the manager asked me what I was watching and I replied "the new crappy one" and the response was "err. which one?"  The other is that I had carefully timed the experience to allow for watching a second movie, a locally produced feature which was probably made for about $2k - possibly more depending on the crafts services costs.  Uwe Boll managed to make one of the two films look very good - so kudos to Monster From Bikini Beach for doing more with less money than it cost to dye Boss Hogg's mustache.

-Anthony Sheppard
tony@retrocrush.com

 

 

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