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Rated R
Copyright 1980 Marcel/Robertson Productions Limited
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Hawk - Noble warrior who uses a special sword powered by elven magics. Apparently it protects and guides him, unfortunately this protection does not extend to his companions.
  • Gort - Giant of a man, he employs an impressive looking maul. Not the sort of thing you want connecting with your brain housing group.
  • Baldin - Dwarf who has some hygiene problems, using a whip to catch raw fish for consumption is among the least of them. Gets a dagger in the ribs and ends up as the dead dwarf in the bubble.
  • Crow - Last of the elves and his archery skills could put William Tell to shame. Whenever he speaks it reminds me of a dimwitted Vulcan.
  • Ranulf - Grizzled fighter with only one hand, he employs a rapid fire crossbow, it actually takes a clip of bolts, much like an assault rifle! Killed by Voltan.
  • Woman - Don't look at me, that is all they ever call her. She is some sort of good witch that Hawk saves from being burned at the stake. Has a bag of glow in the dark tricks up her sleeves.
  • Elaine - Hawk's beautiful (cough) wife, killed by Voltan.
  • Lots of Evil Guys - Dead meat, oh are they ever dead meat.
  • Drogo - Voltan's adopted son who just wanted daddy to respect him as a warrior. Killed by Hawk.
  • Voltan - Jack Palance! Evil brother to the noble Hawk, an iron helm hides the hideous disfigurement of his face caused by Elaine sticking a torch into his eye. Not that anything women do is like having a flaming brand stuck in your socket mind you. Cut down by Hawk.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

The cover art looks pretty average for a sword and sorcery flick and we all expect some goofy "magical" effects, but when those two glowing hula hoops appear all bets are off. Of course Hawk and Ranulf's journey through the haunted forest could be considered fair warning, it's just that the hula hoops mark where I believe the director began dropping acid during shoots.

Years ago Voltan killed the wise and good king, at least I think he was a king. Maybe I'm taking too much for granted, if he was all that wise then he would have tossed his evil brat down a well long ago. Now the wicked swordsman is terrorizing the countryside, burning Ranulf's village and taking the Abbess prisoner. Only a powerful group of heroes can stop the spread of evil and only one man can lead them, Ranulf transforms into a single handed bloodhound and locates Hawk in under two scenes. Using the good witch's magic to quickly assemble a formidable party allows for character development, but some hooded guy walking in and reasoning, "You all meet in a tavern." would have been just as coherent.

Okay, we have our warriors and evil forces to oppose them, what could possibly be missing? (here plot, here plot, come here boy) Hold on a minute, the evil guys want a hefty ransom for the Abbess' safe return, the party will have to battle a group of rich and vicious slavers for the gold. That was little problem, but when Drogo takes it upon himself to confront Hawk a fight ensues and the result (dead Drogo) sets Voltan off.

Jack Palance's character has had a difficult life. First the woman he desires weds Hawk, then she burns half his face off, when he tries to kill his goody goody brother with a crossbow she manages to get in the way and now this, the darn kid he had to adopt and raise as a son (funny thing, no woman wants to marry a guy with scar tissue for the left side of his face) gets sent to the big orphanage in the sky.

Finally the two brothers do cross swords in a very lopsided ticket. Hawk wields the "Elven Mindstone Blade of Jack Palance Slaying and General Whoopass" and the outcome is pretty much a forgone conclusion. The ending almost shoves the idea of sequel in you face, but I can not imagine any act to follow the very special film that is "Hawk the Slayer."

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • The old king will always hang on long enough to bequeath his legacy onto the good son, even after being stabbed through the heart with a sword.
  • Evil armies sing happy little tunes while hacking up women and children.
  • Boa Constrictors live in temperate forests.
  • Witches can summon glowing hula hoops to teleport people across vast distances.
  • Hare Krishnas hate dwarves.
  • Whips are under utilized in sport fishing.
  • Pound for pound you can not beat the entertainment value of watching some dirty little man gnaw on a roast chicken.
  • Evil men keep nuns as pets.
  • A witch's staff is full of silly string, she uses this to blind and immobilize enemies.
  • Nuns would make really fine secret service agents.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 4 mins - Why does a human have the last elfin mindstone?
  • 14 mins - Hawk journeys into the land of background matting.
  • 30 mins - That looks just like Halloween spider web...
  • 42 mins - Baldin did not have any trouble getting free of those ropes, I probably would have done that earlier.
  • 45 mins - "The Iron Hills are no more." says Baldin, you mean that Voltan bulldozed them or something? What force in medieval times went around flattening out hills?
  • 54 mins - You know, for good guys, this group is rather sadistic.
  • 67 mins - Very windy here in the foreground, but notice how all the trees are not moving.
  • 83 mins - Fluorescent bouncy balls! Hehehehe! I almost died from laughter over the next few minutes.

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note hawkslayer1.wav Goofy Guy: "Ohhh dear, I do believe my impetuous friend is challenging you."
Crow: "He wastes his time and mine." (Arrow thwack!)
Green Music Note hawkslayer2.wav Hawk: "And how did the mighty Baldin come to be in this sorry mess?"
Baldin: "Too much wine, a friendly fight or know how it goes. A crack on the skull from a sultry wench, and I wake to find myself at the mercy of these chanting fools!"
Green Music Note hawkslayer3.wav Drogo: "I am no messenger, but I will give you a message. The message of death!"
Green Music Note hawkslayer4.wav Voltan: "Dear brother, I think you and your friends can be persuaded to tell me...believe it, or not!" (Ok, so he didn't actually say that last part.)
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 


 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Cliphawkslayer1.mpg - 3.2m
I still cannot believe that they used fluorescent bouncy balls.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 2 [3] 4 5 ... 13
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #17. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Russell Thompson
I have only seen this movie once, on New Years day on the Millenium!! It is the funniest movie ever made, and we cracked up over Voltan, the so-called villian, who over-does every line in the movie, so it comes out sounding quite hysterical (watch how he delivers the line 'forcing me to take another man's child to CALL MY OWN!!')!! And the retro incidental music makes it even funnier! And who is that guy who goes around going 'Brethren' with a really stupid face and stupid voice! This is why we love it-everyone's STUPID in it!!! Great bit with the flying ping-pong balls, and I cracked up over that final fight!! Hours of laughter we had!!
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #18. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Jason
This movie is the greatest bunch of cheese ever.  It was on the CBC here in Canada years ago and one time I stayed up and taped it removing the commercials.  I watched it a few times and a friend and I counted how many bad guys Hawk and his merry bunch slaughtered.  I can't remember the exact figure but it was somewhere between 150-200 if my memory serves me - mostly by the machne gun action of Ranulf's crossbow and Crow's bow and quiver of endless arrows.  The guy in the post above has a point - the good guys were mass murderers.  This site has brought back so many great memories with the video and sound clips.  Hose-Ami, Hose-Ami....Brethren
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #19. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Gary
I just had to post here. Ever since one of my then D&D buddies called me after school like 15 years ago or something like that and said "Dude - turn on the tv quick!" Can't remember the channel, but from the opening sequence of Voltan striding through the castle killing people, I was hooked. Took me years to re-discover this movie online, but now I have MP3's of most of the music, and I still have my 15-year old VHS recording of it (badly degraded). I hope that somehow, this gem among b-movies will make it to DvD someday! The music, the action, the dialogue, and the delivery all make the movie - what can I say; Hawk the Slayer rocks!

"Well little man, has the quake in your belly stopped your mouth?"
"I, am ready..." - (Crow)
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #20. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Priss Asagiri
Wow! With all the expletive laced reviews in here I'm beginning to feel like I'm in an AICN Talkback! Anyways....I think this movie is a lame excuse for a Tolkienesque movie. Hawk the Slayer = Poor man's, smoked too much wacky weed, I have no life to call my own Lord of the Rings knockoff. If anyone is still reading these posts I urge you now....GO SEE EVERY SINGLE LORD OF THE RINGS MOVIE IN THE TRILOGY! That is how a Sword and Sorcery fantasy flick should be done! And you want an elf with the skills to defeat large numbers of evil goons, Legolas beats Crow (Why do I keep thinking about MST3K? Oh yeah! That happens to be the name of one of the 'Bots!) hands down anyday. Plus Logolas' multishot arrow effects are much better! Thank god for high budget effects! Yes they can be put to good use with the right storyline!
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #21. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:03 PM by ThufferMudfoot
All I can say is everytime I see the Elf shoot his bow with lightening speed, I still get a woodie. Man I want a Sword like Hawks!  

This movie filled my childhood DnD Geefest days with ample material for plagerization. For a 10 year old Boy, this film is a 10. For a 31 year old man, well its still a 10, cause evertime I watch it, Im 10 years old again!
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #22. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Mike
I was hooked hardcore on this movie as a kid, along with my two brothers. I didn't have a VCR when I saw it on T.V., so I recored it on my audio cassette player, thats how much I loved this have a copy on VHS. I laugh at some of the stuff that I thought was so bad ass as a kid, namely any seen with Crow in it...but it brings me back at thats what I love about it. I noticed recently in the seen where Hawk is cutting the ropes from the witches wrists, he hits her in the head with his sword and winces, I almost died laughing...apparently that cut would just have to do. Its my all time favorite movie as a kid and as goofy as it is, still remains so today. It's cool to see all these other people who dug this movie as much as I did.
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #23. Posted on July 05, 2002, 04:38:09 AM by Liam
Today I woke up in the morning with a bizarre and totally unfounded desire to search for Hawk the Slayer on the net.  Its been so long, and frankly Im astounded that anyone else besides me so much as mildly enjoyed it.  All you guys have warmed me inside in voicing such similar opinions to my own.  God bless you all, and God bless that awful, cheap, but oh so fulfilling film!!!!
Hawk the Slayer
Reply #24. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:03 PM by anonymous
watched this movie in 1984 whilst playing a 24 hour snooker marathon for charity
everyone stopped playing and watched the film
s**te but utterly compelling
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