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Hawk the Slayer

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Critics' Reviews

AMG Review
Craig Butler
Only diehard sword and sorcery fans are likely to really enjoy Hawk the Slayer, a low budget genre entry that suffers from a lack of inspiration in almost all departments. Of course, just because it lacks inspiration doesn't mean it's a mess; although logic is not always at the top of the screenwriters' list, the plot generally makes sense and definitely follows well established rules that guarantee that on a basic level it will provide some entertainment value. But it also suffers from dialogue that is incredibly pompous, turgid and, ultimately, quite silly. Some of the lines that the cast is forced to intone are simply ludicrous. Special effects are also not up to the level that modern audiences will expect, although, truth to tell, they were even primitive for viewers in 1981. Although the direction is uninspired, the pacing is generally decent, and there are a few exciting moments. John Terry is dull as dishwasher as the hero - and clearly several decades too young to be villain Jack Palance's brother. Palance is a hoot, and the main reason to watch the film. It's not great acting, but as pure, unadulterated ham goes, it's choice. ~ Craig Butler, Rovi
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