fantasy

Ladyhawke (1985)

Hey everyone, before I introduce you to the wonderful Rutger Haur-blessed world of Ladyhawke, I need to explain why this review is a little on the short side. I don’t discuss my job on this blog because my employer has a fairly, shall we say, broad remit in policing what its staff say about them online and I try to err on the side of caution. That said, I may have hinted over the years that I am…

“A criminal mastermind?”

“Oh for goodness sake, I occupy a MINOR position in the Irish government.”

Currently, work is absolutely crazy owing to the ongoing spectacle of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland going boom boom in its big boy pants. A French minister recently joked that she’d named her cat “Brexit” because it keeps howling to be let out into the garden and then refuses to leave when the door is opened.

I would say that the metaphor is accurate, except that the cat also has a bomb strapped to it and I’m not sure the garden is far enough to be outside the blast radius.

Anyway… 

That’s why this review is a little short. As to why I’m only getting around to reviewing it years after the original request…that’s totally Brexit’s fault too. I swear.

***

Ladyhawke is an eighties fantasy movie with a cult following, he said, redundantly, because every eighties fantasy movie has a cult following. Find me a Wikipedia page for one of the breed that doesn’t include the words “cult following”. Can’t be done.

On dark nights, the adherents of Hawk the Slayer can be heard chanting in the woods, every solistice, the Cult of Krull sacrifices a virgin in a moonlit grove and don’t even get me started on what the Willow fans get up to. But Ladyhawke actually earns its cult status for two reasons:

1)      It was a massive flop on release.

2)      It’s actually quite good.

Now, let me qualify that. It’s good. But it’s eighties as fuck. In fact, take a look at the opening credits for me and imagine that it’s actually the start of a cop show about a hawk police officer busting cocaine cartels in Miami beach.

Image result for tubbs miami vice

“Dammit Ladyhawke! I may be your partner, but you crossed the line back there in that warehouse!”

“Until we take down Espinoza and the Marinos cartel, there IS no line!”

You’ll also notice some pretty high calibre talent in those credits. There’s Michelle Pfeiffer and Rutger Haur of course, Richard Donner who famously directed Superman and Stuart Baird, one of the most respected film editors in Hollywood. But then, he also directed Star Trek Nemesis, so fuck that guy.

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The Devil’s Heir- Chapter 7

CHAPTER 7: THE CUSTOMERS

She was awake and she was screaming.

In the darkness she tried to marshal her thoughts. Why was she screaming?

Not a dream, she didn’t have those anymore.

She felt like hot lead was being poured on her chest.

The pain had gotten worse while she had been sleeping.

It had gotten steadily more painful since her arrival in the City, and that had been four days ago. Now, it felt like it was killing her. Whimpering, she stumbled out of bed and felt her way down the corridor. Through a skylight over her head she could see the sky. It was early morning judging by the slightly lighter shade of grey. She did not know what made day or night pass in this place. It had been a long time since she had seen a sun.

The pain was now so bad it almost felt like her feet weren’t touching the ground, like she was being suspended in the air by a swarm of stinging hornets. Angela will know what to do, she has to.

There was a ball of fire in her chest.

She struggled on down the corridor, and came to the top of the stairs.

Her legs gave out and she tripped, rolling down the stair way, bruising her stomach and back on the hard wooden steps one after the other until she came to rest on the grey stone floor.

She lay there in the pale morning half-light, limp as a rag doll, unable even to move.

“Do not turn your back to the guilt. Do not push it away. Do not try to protect yourself from it. Guilt is the pain of the soul. It is the bleeding scar tissue left by your sin. It wants to hurt you. “

Angela’s clipped voice could be heard in the furthest corner of the hall, it cut into the last dusty grey nook in the rafters.

“Let it.” she said simply.

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The Devil’s Heir- Chapter 6

CHAPTER 6: THE STOOP-BACKED CITY

They drove for what felt like miles until finally the city began to shade the horizon, slowly becoming darker and more solid.

“Who built this place?” Marie whispered, and you had to whisper.

“No one knows.” said Angela “It was always here.”

And it looked like it had always been there. The houses looked like ruins in the jungle look, as if they are part of the trees and the vines, as if they too are of the forest and not made by man. They looked as if they had been grown, as if the bricks and mud and mortar had slowly pushed their way out of the ground and come to rest. No two were alike, some leaned left and some right. As they drove through the streets she saw that there were quite a number of people out, but they looked fewer, because everyone kept their distance from each other. Nobody walked in pairs, and everyone walked hunched and with their eyes downward cast, stark against the pale walls of the silent, grave-like houses.

Marie felt a shudder pass through her, and the walls on either side of the street seemed to cave in a little closer. She sat back in her seat and closed her eyes, and felt for her comb.

If you could, for a moment, be whisked away from home and stand in any street of the city, you would at first be struck by the horrible, unbreakable greyness of the place. The buildings were as grey as the sand which was as grey as the people which was as grey as the sky which was as grey as the buildings…and on and on it went in a never ending cycle of dullness and despair. But after a few minutes you would begin to feel a horrible sensation that you had been here before. Those grim, rainy Thursdays. Those winter vigils at inner city bus stops with the sky hanging like an iron dome overhead. For purgatory is little more than life played again, a repeat of the main feature. Only now the jokes have been done to death, the twists can be seen a mile off, the characters irritate through familiarity and anything that once was new has now been seen a million times before.

The truck finally shuddered to a halt and there was a silence.

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The Hangman’s Daughter- Chapter 1

Hi guys, okay, so firstly thanks so much for all your kind words and support. I honestly expected to announce this to the world to deafening silence and maybe a polite cough in the darkness, so the fact that so many of you have said you’re willing to follow this story means the world to me. So, starting from today I’m going to be posting one chapter every Thursday that’s not a review day. But to get the ball rolling I thought I’d do three chapters so that we can actually get pretty far into the story and establish the setting and a few of the main characters, particularly Marie and Luke, the daughter and the hangman (seeing as they are kinda important). Alright, so, here we go.

Aaaaaand…deep breath.

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