With every hit movie there come many imitations. When Conan the Barbarian (1982) became a hit among genre film fans, a plethora of rip offs flooded theaters the same year and afterwards. I’ve seen quite a few of these stink bombs such as Ator: The Fighting Eagle (1982) and Conquest (1983). But one film that eluded me years was the 1982 Roger Corman produced Deathstalker.
Rick Hill is Deathstalker, a warrior in the age of old who survives mostly on brute strength. He gives not a crap about anyone else but himself until one day a witch sends him on a quest to find a magic sword, an amulet and a chalice. He has also been asked to rescue the lovely Princess Codile (Barbie Benton) who has been taken captive by the evil Munkar.
Deathstalker finds the sword in a cave and meets up with Oghris (Richard Brooker) who tells him of a warrior competition at Munkar's castle in which the winner will inherit the kingdom. On their journey the also meet up with a female warrior named Kaira (Lana Clarkson). Kaira's clothing, or lack thereof since she is only wearing a G-string and a cape, is pretty impressive and sets the tone as to why you even bothered to watch.
Our party arrives at the castle and competes in the games but not before taking advantage of Munkar’s “party” the night before. This party basically consists of having your way with Munkar’s slave girls. This honestly isn’t a bad thing I guess but again it sets the mood as to why this movie was even made. Enter Barbie Benton! Ms. Benton is paraded around as Munkar’s new acquisition. She is chained and left to whoever wants to fight for her. She is saved by Deathstalker only to be taken away by Munkar. After much battling in the tournament, Deathstalker eventually saves Princess Codile and faces Munkar in a final battle that really wasn’t all that. Hell I don’t even know if he found the other two items he was searching for to be honest. My brain had been turned to Jell-o by the final reel of this pooper.
|Less clothing means ease of butt kicking|
Deathstalker is about one thing and one thing only; Tits. This movie was filmed with the purpose of showing Barbie Benton, Lana Clarkson and every female cast member’s tits. Well, except for the old witch because no one wants to see that but I am actually surprised they didn’t fall into frame during her scenes. All the women are extremely scantily clad and their wardrobe basically consists of a G-string and a see through cover. The acting is wooden (insert your joke here), the special effects laughable and the set design a step above an episode of Land of the Lost. Even the villain has a goofy makeup design. I mean really what the hell is on his face? He reminds me of a disenchanted Michael Ironside.
|"Muuhahahahaha...I look ridiculous!"|
The movie does move at a pretty good pace I will give it that but by the end I had lost interest because there were no more bared boobies to look at.
|Barbie showing her assets|
If this movie didn’t have so much gratuitous nudity I would have lost interest pretty quick. It would have been like watching Leprechaun(1993) and realizing Jennifer Aniston was never going to get naked and walking out of the theater (which is exactly what I did at the dollar theater back in the day).
|Return of the Jedi eat your heart out!|
The cover art for Deathstalker is top notch. The creature on the front, holding who I am assuming is Barbi Benton, gives us plenty of promise to go on. Unfortunately the creature that actually shows up in the film looks like a WWE wrestler with a pig mask. The cover art also boasts the appearance of Ms. Benton giving her full recognition of her Playboy Playmate status. Hence another reason to have rented this in the long gone days of VHS home rental.
|Did I mention there was mud wrestling?|
Even though Deathstalker is a stinker it somehow created a franchise that has spawned three more installments; Deathstalker II(1987), Deathstalker III: The Warriors of Hell (1988) and Deathstalker IV: Match of Titans (1991). I guess I now have to view these in order say that I completed the “quadrilogy”. Deathstalker did launch the career of Lana Clarkson who went on to star in two more Corman produced efforts; Barbarian Queen (1985) and Barbarian Queen II: The Empress Strikes Back (1989). So venture if you dare young warriors and may the gods of steel guide your path into the world of the Deathstalker!