Written by: Michael Den Boer on June 23rd, 2006
Theatrical Release Date: Indonesia, 1983
Director: Ratno Timoer
Cast: Barry Prima, Advent Bangun, Eni Christina, Rita Zahara, Gudhy Sintara
DVD released: June 27th, 2006
Approximate running time: 101 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
DVD Release: Mondo Macabro
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $24.95
A meteorite crashes on Earth from the heavens above. A wizard makes a magical sword out of materials taken form this mysterious meteor. Flash forward many years later, there is a horny crocodile queen who lusts after this magical sword more then she ever lusted after any man. She assembles a group of evil doers to find the whereabouts of the sword and remove it from its secret place and bring it back to her. Mandala is forced to go a quest for the magical Devil’s Sword when a former pupil nearly kills his master. Along the way he teams up with a woman who seeks her own revenge against the crocodile queen who stole her man. Are the cards stacked against Mandala to will he be able to defeat the evil crocodile queen and save mankind?
The Devil’s Sword like many films made during the early 1980’s is a take on the Italian film genre Peplum, sometimes referred to as sword and sorcery films. The whacky and crazy world of Indonesian cinema in many ways also bears a strong resemblance to films that were being made in Turkey around the same as both countries instead of importing American product just made their own home grown version.
The film is effectively directed as its various locations are used to their fullest and the special effects while on the primitive side never really become distracting. The films plot is thin and most of the film consists of make out sessions with a crocodile queen and fights to the death with Barry Prima and his various foes. Barry Prima is the essence of cool as Mandala. He fighting skills and prowess with the sword are unmatched. This movie relies heavily on fantasy and there many moments where you will be saying “What the fuck?” and it is best to just go along for the ride and not take the film too seriously.
Overall this ones has just about everything a exploitation fan could want like decapitations, sword fights, magic, laser beams, a Cyclops, crocodile men and a nympho crocodile queen.
Mondo Macabro presents The Devil’s Sword in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves the films original 2.35:1 aspect ratio. Outside of few instances of color fluctuation the colors and flesh tones look accurate. Black levels look good and details are sharper in the foreground then the background. Despite some of the transfer’s flaws this is the best this film has ever looked on home video.
This release comes with audio option an English dubbed audio mix which is presented in a Dolby Digital stereo. The audio is free of any hiss, distortion or any other sound defects. The dialog, music and sound effects sound evenly balanced as they never overpower each other.
Extras for this release include the films original trailer and three text pieces written by Pete Tombs one about the film, another titled “Barry Prima Blog” and the last one titled “Heavenly Swords”. This releases main extra is a twenty minute interview with Barry Prima who appears at times too agitated by the questions he is being asked and several times he just doesn’t remember anything about the subject he is being asked about. Despite Prima’s failing memory and attitude the inclusion of this interview is more then welcome addition to this release.
The Devil’s Sword is another obscure gem rescued by Mondo Macabro as they continue to unleash on the world their own distinctive taste in cinema, highly recommended.
For more information about The Devil’s Sword visit Mondo Macabro here.