The Golden Years: Fantasy Films of the 70s & 80s

Discussion in 'Archive: SF&F: Films and Television' started by Vortigern99, Jan 15, 2008.

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  1. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
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    Stryphe, you're right about Bakshi's LOTR. It came out in late November of 1978. Alot of the sci-fi magazine press for the film (in Famous Monsters and Cinefantastique, etc.) occurred in early 1979, so I've always associated it with the later year.

    As to ROTK, I have no excuse. I don't know why I believed that movie came out in 1983, except that perhaps a videotape of it I once owned had that year on its cover (no doubt as the release of the video). EDIT: The imdb and wikipedia list ROTK as 1980. Phooey on the DVD cover!

    Thanks for clearing these things up! I've changed The List on all previous pages to reflect the correction. :)
  2. Darth-Stryphe Former Mod and City Rep

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    Apr 24, 2001
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    1980 seems more right, but I find it odd they messed up the copyright notice. That's a legal notation, after all, not just some random info placed on the back.
  3. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

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    Nov 12, 2000
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    Stryphe, it may be that the animated ROTK was produced and copyrighted in 1979, but not released (or aired -- wasn't it a TV special?) until 1980.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Here is The List again, to start discussion for a new page:

    1974 - The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (Harryhausen).
    1977 - The Hobbit (animated -- Rankin/Bass). WIZARDS (animated -- Bakshi). Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger (Harryhausen). The original Star Wars (Lucas).
    1978 - Lord of the Rings (animated -- Bakshi).
    1980 - The Empire Strikes Back (Lucas). Flash Gordon (DeLaurentiis -- which I include b/c of the swordplay and fantasy "feel"). Return of the King (animated -- Rankin/Bass).
    1981 - Excalibur (Boorman). Clash of the Titans (Harryhausen). Time Bandits (Gilliam)
    1982 - Conan the Barbarian (Milius/DeLaurentiis). Dragonslayer (Robbins). The Dark Crystal (Henson/Oz). The Sword and the Sorcerer (Chase/Pyun). Beastmaster (Coscarelli). The Last Unicorn (animated -- Beagle/Rankin/Bass). Hercules (Cotzi, with Lou Ferrigno).
    1983 - Krull. Return of the Jedi (Lucas).
    1984 - The Neverending Story.
    1985 - Labyrinth (Henson/Oz/Jones/Lucas). Conan the Destroyer (Fleischer). The Black Cauldron (animated -- Disney). Ladyhawke. (Donner)
    1986 - Legend (R. Scott). Red Sonja (Flesicher). Highlander. Robin Hood (BBC/Showtime).
    1987 - Masters of the Universe. The Princess Bride (Reiner).
    1988 - Willow (Lucas/Howard).
    1989 - The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (Gilliam).
  4. Darth-Stryphe Former Mod and City Rep

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    Yes, it was a TV special.
  5. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

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    Has anyone seen the Rankin-Bass Return of the King recently? My memory of it from about five years ago is that it was sing-songy and cartoonish in the worse sense, and that alot had been lost in the translation from serious, epic war fiction to goofy kid's show. If anyone has either a dissenting opinion or corroborating details, I'd like to know; because to me the animated ROTK is all a blur of warbly folk music and cheerful, grinning faces.
  6. Jedimarine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 13, 2001
    star 5
    I actually own it...but more for memories of childhood then any enjoyment of it's quality.

    First big problem is it drops in mid story...Instead of making a LOTR sequel to their Hobbit, they made a sequel to Bakshi's LOTR. This alone is bizarre. And for as much as people tended to like the Hobbit, ROTK should not have been made in the same tone...Silly folks songs was not the way to advance the narrative of the epic.

    On the plus side...Rankin/Bass included elements of the story which Jackson was foolish to disregard...such as Sam's dream, the watchers of Cirith Ungol, and the Fight on the road in Mordor (yes, I know it got included in the extended version).

    Because of how the film was developed...being a direct sequel to LOTR by Bakshi but a artistic sequel to Hobbit, the character focus was all wrong...relying heavily on Gandalf, while minimalizing characters like Merry and Pippin and Aragorn, and downright ignoring characters like Faramir, Legolas and Gimli. Denethor is just awful, but his cameo is brief.

    In the end, they tried to please everyone and ended up getting a "meh" at best.
  7. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
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    As I recall, as well, the show doesn't pick up exactly where Bakshi left off, after (or during?) the Battle of Helm's Deep; it jumps forward into the middle of ROTK, skipping the connective passages that explain how the characters got from where they were to where they are. It's a confused muddle that doesn't really deserve to be on The List except by default, since it's a sequel of sorts to two previous entries.
  8. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    One that I consider a good bit of fantasy (and that I just found at the store today) is The Ice Pirates, made in 1984.

    Kimball Kinnison
  9. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

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    Ouch. I'm sorry, K_K, but in all honesty I loathe that film. I'm going to call it sci-fi and leave it off The List, unless there's a big push for its inclusion. I'll cave if I'm in the minority, and that most people turn out to believe Ice Pirates is quality fantasy. But I'm betting that won't be the case; my apologies to K_K and any others who may enjoy the picture.

    I saw it in the theater in 1984, and I was tepid on it even then. Subsequent cable viewings confirmed my belief that it was mediocre at best, and in places downright annoying. The so-called comedy moments, such as the whole space-herpes subplot, or when the protagonists age into unconvincingly made-up old versions of themselves, have a contrived, strained feel. This is all just IMO, but as far as that gets me, I think IP is a stinker.
  10. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    1981:

    [image=http://i265.photobucket.com/albums/ii214/KnifeToTheSoul/Movie-Poster-Heavy-Metal.jpg]

    I think many female adventure leads including Witchbalde and Lara Croft owe their existance to Taarna. There may have never been a film quite like The Fifth Element if not for the story of a burnt out taxi driver in a dystopia who comes across a woman on the run dressed in white thanks the the intervention of force of evil in the universe found in Harry Canyon. And Den features a simplistic muscle man in a fantasy world, in fact a nerd who is transformed into said adonis and hurled into another world which I think is a fanatasy many a girl-less nerd has had. There was another Hevay metal film made, not a sequal at all. It was terrible. There was a graphic novel of it which was far better.

    Heavy Metal
  11. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    But that was the whole point of it!

    Go watch the theatrical trailer. The whole point of the movie was to be stupid. It was supposed to be contrived and strained. It was supposed to be a stinker.

    It's not supposed to be some great work of art. It's just a mindless film that was meant to be a mindless film.

    Kimball Kinnison
  12. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
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    I'm for the inclusion of Heavy Metal (1981) -- which is more sci-fi but does have those awesome fantasy moments -- but I'm still firmly against Ice Pirates. Assuming we're including movies that suck (intentionalyl or otherwise; IP rates 11% on rottentomatoes.com), what case is there to be made that it even qualifies as fantasy?
  13. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    I almost did not bother with Heavy Metal given it's scifi leanings, but there is enough fantasy to make it in. One of the very few films that lives up to the term "Space Fantasy".
  14. Koohii Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2003
    star 5
    The first Heavy Metal movie was based on various short stories from the magazine that got slammed together to make the compilation film.
    One note about "Den": one woman complained about the fact that Den clad himself in the cartoon, as the original story had him running around sky-clad.

    5th Element does indeed owe it's existance to Harry Canyon. On the other hand, 5th element was such a juvenile movie, and a bad one at that, that who cares?

    As a teenager, HM was a great movie. Once I was in college, the appeal started to fade. By the time I got out of college I never wanted to see it again.

    And the less said of HM:2K the better. Bad comic book.

    Red Sonja:
    Sadly lackluster and frequently compared less than favorablly to the Conan movies. Some speculation that Bridget Neilson was supposed to get female audience members to go to a Fantasy sword flick. Don't know that it worked. Sonja is very much the 80s action female: tough as nails to enemies, but nice to small children--a working mom with a broadsword. Ernie Reyes Jr was thrown in as the ethnic child and spoiled brat that Sonja has to play mother to. Intended as comic relief, this kid was annoying (blame the writers, not the actor). The "only women may touch" sacret relic combined with virgin female warrior were rediculous troupes, also in keeping with the 'movie morality lessons' of the 70s more than the late 80s. Sadly, the movie was just as consistent with the source material as the Conan movies./>
  15. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    First of all, you've already included at least one movie that "sucks" on the list (Bakshi's LOTR has been rather soundly criticized by many sources, my favorite review being here).

    What criteria do you set for something being fantasy? Usually, it's categorized as "swords and sorcery", or something like that. Well, Ice Pirates definitely fits on the swords part. That would leave only the "sorcery" side of things.

    Now, I would easily argue that fantasy doesn't require that you have wizards or sorcerers performing magic in order to have the sort of fantastic things classified as "sorcery". You can have a pseudo-scientific explanation for something and have it still considered fantasy (see also: the Force being an energy field that interacts with midichlorians), and you can have fantastic elements that are not magic or sorcery (your inclusion of the 1980 Flash Gordon is an example).

    To that end, the "time warp" towards the end of easily qualifies as a fantasy-style element. Ice Pirates is at least as much a fantasy as Flash Gordon. If you include one, you really should include both.

    If you look at it thematically, doesn't it also parallel many of the quest-style fantasy stories? The company of rogues stealing from an evil empire rescue the princess and set off on a quest to help her find an object of great power (the 7th world) and save her father is quite the cliche.

    Kimball Kinnison
  16. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    K_K, you make some fair points. Yes, there are films on The List that rate pretty low on the critical evaluation scale. But each one of those has a very good reason (IMO) for being included.

    Bakshi's LOTR is here because, dammit, it's Lord of the Rings! It may be a "Tolkien's Greatest Hits" approach to the story with dull pacing, incosistent scripting (Gandalf calls Saruman "Aruman" in one scene, then reverts to "Saruman" in another), and outdated (even at the time) psychedelic backgrounds, but parts of the film are quite visionary and cool, and at the very least it's a visual representation of THE heroic fantasy novel that has set the standard for nearly every heroic fantasy novel that has followed since its publication. It would belong on The List even if it were a one-star film, but IMO it merits at least 2 1/2.

    Conan the D and Red Sonja are included because they are either a sequel to, or of a piece with, the original Conan the B, which is arguably the greatest and most artistically successful film on The List outside of the STAR WARS films. The two Conan "sequels" might outright suck, or be unintentionally funny, but they are are part of the phenomenon with which this thread is concerned and are inextricable from a discussion about same.

    I could go on, but I won't bore you with my reasons for including the execrable Hercules (1982). Suffice to say it represents the best of the worst, and it too is inarguably fantasy. What I have intentionally NOT included are such films as Yor, Hunter from the Future, and Ator the Fighting Eagle, both of which are early-80s fantasy films, but are so poorly made and so universally forgotten that they do not merit inclusion on The List.

    Ice Pirates has two strikes against it: It is universally reviled, AND it is not a fantasy film. You may argue that the time warp is a fantasy cliche dressed up like pseudo-sci-fi, but that's still only one element in a film otherwise entirely devoid of fantasy elements -- unlike STAR WARS, which is inundated with magical powers and ancient motifs, or Flash Gordon, the original comic strip of which is the well from which STAR WARS draws its style and tone.

    If you think it's ironic that I'm steadfastly against including IP, and yet here I am engaging in a rather lengthy discussion of it, you're right! It's totally ironic. But I still refuse to concretize it or validate it by putting it onto The List -- unless and until there are others who come forward to champion it.
  17. RX_Sith C&G Game Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2006
    star 5
    Fantasy Films.

    (from filmsite.org)

    The link above includes some of your fantasy movies, plus others that are Sci-Fi Fantasy films, and others that comic book related.

    The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973)
    Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze (1975)
    Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
    Oh, God! (1977)
    Star Wars (1977)
    Heaven Can Wait (1978)
    Superman (1978)
    Flash Gordon (1980)
    Somewhere in Time (1980)
    Dragonslayer (1981)
    Excalibur (1981)
    Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
    Time Bandits (1981)
    The Dark Crystal (1982)
    E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
    Krull (1983)
    Something Wicked This Way Comes (1983)
    Ghostbusters (1984)
    The NeverEnding Story (1984)
    Supergirl (1984)
    Back to the Future (1985)
    Enemy Mine (1985)
    Explorers (1985)
    Ladyhawke (1985)
    Legend (1985)
    The Boy Who Could Fly (1986)
    Labyrinth (1986)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1998)
    Wings of Desire (1988, W. Ger./Fr.)
    Batman (1989)
  18. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    Then is this list simply "Films Vortigern99's thinks are Fantasy Films of the 70s & 80s"?

    Define for me specific criteria that makes Ice Pirates not fantasy, other than the fact that you don't like it. Thematically, it is virtually identical to many of the fantasy films that you included on the list (including LOTR). You specifically said before that you included Flash Gordon because of the swordplay, something that Ice Pirates has in much greater quantity.

    And even your argument that Flash Gordon is fantasy because it provided inspiration for Star Wars falls flat. The Errol Flynn swashbuckler films (such as Robin Hood) provided a great deal of inspiration for Star Wars as well. Does that make them fantasies?

    In fact, you could easily argue that by the criteria that you seem to be using, The Princess Bride isn't a fantasy. After all, the only "magic" performed in the film comes from Miracle Max, who is essentially acting as a doctor, not a wizard or sorcerer. The rest of it is summed up as a pure adventure film, not a fantasy. The only thing that makes it seem like a fantasy movie is the setting (something that would then disqualify Star Wars).

    If all of those are considered fantasy, then why not Ice Pirates, except for the fact that you don't like it. Since when were you considered the arbiter of what is Fantasy or not?

    Kimball Kinnison
  19. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    I've tried to be very polite and reasonable in listing my reasons as to why a science fiction satire that is almost univerally reviled among those who even remember it does not belong on my list of fantasy -- encompassing both "sword-and-sorcery" and "fairy tale" -- films of the 70s and 80s. Nonetheless, K_K, you're taking my comments out of context, excising qualifying phrases from my statements, and actually ignoring my appeal to other members of the JC to come in and defend IP, all evidently in order to cast doubt on my reasons for creating this List, which include fun and nostalgia and productive, imaginative discussion -- not pursuing discussion of a pet favorite which others are (by their silence and absence) discinclined to include on the List for very specific reasons.

    The specific criteria for inclusion on The List are simple: Is it a sword and sorcery movie or a fairy-tale movie released in the period of 1974-ish to 1989-ish? All of the films on the list adhere to these criteria -- including Flash Gordon, which by dint of a number of magical elements, including Ming's eros-inducing ring (used on Dale in the Throne Room), which also seems to have some kind of soul-trapping power (see Ming's possible resurrrection at the end), and other mythologically or legendary-based elements such as bird-people and giant swamp creatures. The underlying thematic elements of Flash are also based in sword-and-sorcery, whereas those of IP lie in straightforward swashbuckling pictures such as Captain Blood and Flynn's Robin Hood -- which, since you asked, are not fantasy films because they include no sorcery or fairy-tale elements.

    Furthermore, as I pointed out in my above post, there are other reviled fantasy films such as Yor and Ator that I am declining to include, even though they fit the fantasy criteria, simply because they are very bad films. Thus IP, as I said, has two strikes against it: It's bad (12% rating on RT) AND it's science fiction as opposed to fantasy.

    Do you see the difference now? Please refrain from derailing this thread by continuing to pursue a pet favorite which does not meet the criteria for inclusion on The List.
  20. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    First of all, this isn't your forum, and last I checked, the MS discouraged mods from actively moderating outside of their forums. If you have a problem with my actions in this thread, why don't you let the forum mods tell me to stop? I am not violating any rules of this forum, and my discussions of the film have focused on the fantasy elements of it, so I am hardly "derailing" anything here.

    Second, as I said, there are some significant fantasy elements in the film.

    How do you define "fairy tale" elements? Last I checked, there are quite a few fairy tales that include the basic idea of "save the princess", not to mention the entire "quest for object of great power" theme which is at the core of Ice Pirates. Similarly, the thought of a missing king and the search to find him is also a common fairy tale theme. Again, you can clearly find that in Ice Pirates. In fact, if the setting of the film were non-sci-fi, it would almost certainly be considered a fantasy film.

    And, from the movies on the list, it's clear that a sci-fi setting is not a disqualifier for being a fantasy film (again, see Star Wars and Flash Gordon for examples). You've also not disqualified horrible movies (again, may I point out that you include Bakshi's LOTR not for its own merits, but simply for its association with Tolkien).

    The truth is that there are usually very blurry lines between sci-fi and fantasy. For example, my favorite sci-fi series of books (which has recently had the movie rights acquired by Ron Howard) is the Lensman series by E. E. "Doc" Smith, and it's about as sci-fi as it gets. Except that you would probably call it a fantasy by the criteria that you give in this thread, because the Lensmen are given various mental powers by the Lens (hence their title). In fact, the Lensmen was one
  21. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    Ice Pirates is in no way a fantasy film. I can accept Star Wars though I disagree, but Ice Pirates and Fantasy go together like peanut butter and pickles.

  22. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    Then how many fantasy elements does it take for something to be a "fantasy film"?

    Is it a fantasy theme, such as the great quest, or saving the princess/kingdom?

    Is it the "fantasy" environment, with swords, knights, and so forth?

    Is it the use of magic or mysticism?

    Is it some other element that I didn't list?

    At least the way I see it, Ice Pirates meets at least two of the above criteria (the theme and the environment). You could even argue it meets the third (the time warp is at least as much mysticism as Ming's survival in Flash Gordon).

    As I said, the biggest problem here is that we don't really have a clear definition of what constitutes a fantasy movie.

    Kimball Kinnison
  23. RX_Sith C&G Game Host

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    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2006
    star 5
    Adventure Films.

    The above link from filmsite.org labels Ice Pirates as an Adventure Film, not a Fantasy one.

    Modern Day Swashbucklers - Pirate Films:

    In the 80s and 90s, the pirate-themed film was unsuccessfully revived again and again. Here are just some examples of modern-day pirate adventure film that were usually box-office disasters and artistic flops:

    * Michael Ritchie's Island (1980) - a modern-day, bloody pirate tale with Michael Caine (as a reporter tracking modern day pirates who terrorized vacationers), based upon Peter Benchley's novel, with a score by Ennio Morricone
    * Ken Annakin's The Pirate Movie (1982) aka The Pirates of Penzance - a light-hearted, pop-rock musical romantic comedy and lampoon, featuring a teenaged love story with Christopher Atkins and Kristy McNichol
    * The Pirates of Penzance (1983) - an adaptation of Gilbert and Sullivan's comic operetta of the same name with two pop music singers (Linda Ronstadt and Rex Smith) in the lead roles along with Kevin Kline
    * Yellowbeard (1983), Mel Damski's unfunny UK spoof of pirate films, often noted as the final film for bug-eyed comedian Marty Feldman
    * Stewart Raffill's campy The Ice Pirates (1984), another parody/spoof of pirate themes with additional science fiction elements, starring Robert Urich and Anjelica Houston in a story of smugglers in a futuristic world where water was a precious commodity
    * Richard Donner's family-oriented (and financially-successful) big-budget The Goonies (1985) (executive-produced by Steven Spielberg), an adventure story with pirates and young stars as misfit kids (Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Corey Feldman and Martha Plimpton) searching for hidden treasure in subterranean caverns bobby-trapped by a ghostly pirate (One-Eyed Willie)
    * Roman Polanski's Pirates (1986) - with Walter Matthau as Captain Red, the crusty head of a pirate ship
    * Steven Spielberg's Hook (1991) - with Robin Williams as an adult Peter Pan fighting Captain Hook (Dustin Hoffman)
    * Renny Harlin's Cutthroat Island (1995) featuring Geena Davis (Harlin's wife at the time) as a female swashbuckler was one of Hollywood's most spectacular flops
    * Muppet Treasure Island (1996) - with Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and actor Tim Curry (as Long John Silver) in a comic retelling of Robert Louis Stevenson's pirate novel
    * Disney's animated sci-fi adventure tale Treasure Planet (2002), a space-aged version of Stevenson's tale about a young boy and a mutinous pirate named Silver
  24. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    Kimball_Kinnison, when I wrote the sentence, "Please refrain from derailing this thread by continuing to pursue a pet favorite which does not meet the criteria for inclusion on The List", I was speaking not as a mod but as the creator of this thread. Whatever the rules are for mods functioning outside their own forum, let's put them aside because my modship simply doesn't apply to this discussion. My request is that of one member of the JC to another: Simply put, you're derailing my thread with an off-topic point of contention, which you and only you support after 48 hours of the subject being brought up.

    Since my first post on the subject, I have said "unless there's a big push for its inclusion; I'll cave if I'm in the minority"; "unless and until there are others who come forward to champion it." So far no one has come to its defense, and in fact we now have two members of the JC who are disinclined to accept the film as fantasy.

    Sir, I have also repeatedly told you: "I'm sorry; my apologies; "you make some fair points". I've been polite and I've debated with you fairly and reasonably. Yet you continue to post such fine musings as: "If you have a problem with my actions in this thread, why don't you let the forum mods tell me to stop?" This is hardly the kind of stuff I was hoping to read when I created this thread about fun movies from the 80s. Your tone is unpleasant and you seem oddly adamant on a point that surely does not merit it

    But nevermind all that. I'll be glad to debate you on the ground you've chosen. So far I've given ample cause as to why I believe this movie is not a fantasy film, but rather science fiction satire. What follows are my answers to your various questions, along with a few clarifications of distortions you appear to harbor about my reasoning:

    Saving the princess, finding the missing king, and questing for an item of power are folkloric motifs, no argument there. But folklore is not the same as fairy tale (which see below). These motifs are also seen in modern adventure films that are not necessarily fantasy films of the sort under discussion here, such as Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981). Some individuals, publications and websites (filmsite.org) might consider a whole sub-section of sci-fi adventure to be fantasy, including Raiders, Superman, ET and Who Framed Roger Rabbit? -- but obviously, one look at The List we've collectively compiled, and which I've reproduced on every page of this thread, will tell you Roger Rabbit and ET are not the kind of movie we're purposing to discuss here.

    The kind of fantasy with which we're concerned here is essentially literary fantasy, which may be said to consist of two sub-genres: Sword and Sorcery (aka "Heroic Fantasy"; ancient mythology also fits into this category), and Fairy Tale. A fairy tale, since there seems to be some confusion on this score, is a story which may feature folkloric characters, and enchantments. The enchantment aspect is salient to the discussion at hand. It means magic, marvels, talking animals, sorcery and the like. It is in point of fact inextricable from a fairy tale; there is no fairy tale without the element of enchantment. Since, in the form of sorcery, enchantment so obviously figures in with the first sub-genre, sword & sorcery, I'll forego further explication there.

    In short, folklore may or may not have elements of magic and the fantastic, but fairy tale always has this feature. Your cited motifs of saving the princess, etc. are folkloric, not fairy tale. The movie you seek to champion has folkloric motifs, certainly, but no fairy tale enchantments. It does not qualify as fantasy.

    In Flash Gordon, which you continue to reject as sword-and-sorcery, we have Ming's ring performing an enchantment on Dale Arden. The ring glows red, makes a funny high-pitched noise, which entrances Dale and envelops her in a scarlet glow. There is no sci-fi explanation forthcoming as to this event: It is sorcery. The ring
  25. Kimball_Kinnison Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    Then why is The Princess Bride on the list? It doesn't really have that element of magic in it. (Like I said before, Miracle Max acts more as a doctor than as a magician.) By the standards you are giving here, it would be more of an adventure, not a fantasy.

    I'm not trying to cause problems here, honestly. But I did take a bit of offense to the attitude of "It's not a fantasy because I say it's not a fantasy." No real criteria was given, and it seems to be inconsistently applied when we actually start looking at the criteria. And, quite honestly, your reaction came across as more of a "I don't like it, so it's not a fantasy." response, almost like a "shut up and go away". Usually, when I get that sort of response, I'm unlikely to go away until something more substantial is given as a reason.

    And (not to keep harping on this), but I still think you are being inconsistent with calling Flash Gordon fantasy because of Ming's ring. Yes, no explanation is given for it, but then they don't give any explanation for any of the other technology that we see (such as Ming's weapon in the very beginning). Should we just assume that it is all magic, not technology? When watching that movie, I've always simply assumed that it was yet another example of Ming's superior technology, not some magical element. How, then, is that any different from Ice Pirates' use of a "time warp" without any explanation of how or why it exists (except for the fact that the plot requires it)? I see no objective difference between the two.

    It just feels like your standards are rigid when it comes to a movie that you don't like, but quite flexible when it is a movie that you do like. That's simply inconsistent, and it make it hard for other people to suggest additional movies for the list. How am I to know which standards you would apply to other movies I might suggest?

    Kimball Kinnison
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