The Original Movie (1986) (3.5 of 5stars)
For a movie so -oh… how to put this- as technically challenged and over a quarter of a century old it’s still entertaining. I could pick over quite a few of the really obvious and some not so obvious issues -*cough* can’t date metal like that *cough*- but why? But…. it is a B movie about sword fights in modern New York. If you are going to accept one absurdity, why not the rest. More importantly, it is entertaining.
I can’t get over the feeling it was conceived in a bar after too many beers, when someone said “Why don’t we have sword fights? I want to see sword fights.” And someone else said “But why wouldn’t you just use a gun?” Things just went on from there. Actually it was probably a frat party.
What I can’t figure out is; how they got Sean Connery to agree to be in it? And wear peacock feathers.
However, it is undeniably a cult classic, and has spawned a lot of fan enthusiasm. It was an original twist on a classic battle between good and evil. (At least I have never come across any mythology about immortal beings dueling with swords.) Sci-fi fans reward originality, despite the movies obvious flaws it caught people’s imagination. Maybe it was the idea someone going about their life, with no clue about their destiny. Or the anguish of being cast out, for not dying. The ultimate tragic hero destined to outlive everyone he cares about, forced into an eternal life and death game. Whatever spark there was, it caught fire.
The Series (1992-1998) (4 of 5 Stars)
This is one of those series I missed the first time around. I wasn’t sure I was going to like it, when I queued it up. After all, how many sword fights can you watch, between the really good guy and the really bad guy. To my delight, the series is where the mythology really began to take shape. I prefer Duncan to Connor. The movie never really developed the character of Connor. But Duncan is taking in strays and helping the helpless, being a good guy, saving the people with his “boy scout” rules.
Maybe, because I watched them all back to back, instead of over the years, the swing back and forth between serious modern Duncan and goofy past Duncan was slightly annoying. There were a few other problems with character development. An evil marauding Methos, the horseman Death, it just didn’t fit. Maybe if they had given some reason for his transformation, like with Darius.
Over all, it was a great series. I would like to see a new version. Maybe not a remake, maybe a continuation in the same universe. How about a girl MacLeod.
So all in all it has been an entertaining few weeks, as I slogged though all 6 seasons of the series and then watched the original movie -you know, just for nostalgia sake. Unfortunately, Netflix doesn’t seem to have Highlander: the Raven online. And, now I want to move to Paris and live on a barge on the Seine. Even though I don’t speak French. I’ll take my Highlander with blue eyes. A girl can dream…