I stray once again out of Hindi movie territory, tempted by the complete and utter dreaminess of Indonesia’s action star Barry Prima (thanks to Todd, whose guidance into the weird wide world of cinema has been invaluable if not always properly appreciated by me). There are two main factors which prevented me from really loving this loony film: the heavy-handed English dubbing, done by even worse actors than those onscreen—I much prefer subtitles; and the incredible amount of gore. I am not a big fan of blood even when it’s obviously fake, and this movie is soaked in it. Even the Black Knight in Monty Python’s Holy Grail makes me shudder (a not-coincidental reference, by the way).
Enough about the bad points. The Warrior does have a fair number of good ones. In fact, in many ways it reminded me of (besides Python) a Manmohan Desai film: vicious jack-booted, badly-bewigged colonial (Dutch) oppressors, one with a daughter who falls for the rebel hero; active animal participation; and an unsubtle crazy mish-mash of religious references and imagery. There is even a CSP guy in the form of the hero’s best friend to interrupt the plot with slapstick on occasion, which does actually serve as relief from all the carnage. Plus, we are given voodoo-practicing zombies and kung fu on top of all that, and—Barry Prima. He really is dreamy, even with bloodied empty eye-sockets and Christ-like stigmata.