17 April 2009

Barbarian Queen II

Barbarian Queen II
United States/Mexico - 1989
Director- Joe Finley
New Concorde, 2003, DVD

Lana “wanna see my boobs” Clarkson is back to reprise her role in this straight to video sequel. Her name this time is changed to Athalea, and her plight is that of the daughter of a missing benevolent monarch. Held captive by her evil usurping uncle, Athalea refuses to give him the magic spell that controls the royal scepter. His rule cannot be consecrated without it, so it seems logical that the only person who knows it should be executed right?

But, she escapes and is pursued into the forest by her uncles goons. She is rescued by a barbarian valley-girl and taken to her camp for leather and fur cheerleaders. She immediately gets into a fight with the skanky redheaded loudmouth, whereupon they roll into the convenient nearby mud hole and tear each other’s tops off. Within moments Athalea is the new leader of the mostly female shantytown beggar village.

They ladies run a low budget smash-n-grab act in which they continuously ambush the usurpers soldiers. Among these is Aurion (chisel featured TV actor Greg Wrangler) who as a child was Athalea’s friend and lover. He displays his nominal loyalty to her father with a grope and dispassionate exchange body fluids in the forest, then the rebels send him back to the castle to warn Usurper of his impending downfall. Something tells me a guy who thinks a glue-on van-dyke is sinister isn’t going to listen to reason. This film, like its predecessor, was farmed out to Latin America, in this case Mexico. Thankfully the land of Luchadores does lend a bit of goofy melodrama to many of the bad guys.

Disguised as nuns, Arhalea and the cheer squad infiltrate the castle, are captured, and once again, a dungeon master straps Athalea into an apparatus and rips her top off.
What an awesomely disgusting sight” he says with a grimace.
Bingo, the movie just made its money. She jiggles for a while, dangling above a bed of spikes.

She escapes, is recaptured, jiggles some more, and then is freed by Aurion. They book it back to the forest hideout where she recovers from post-traumatic jiggling stress disorder. Her dad’s retainers show up with his mouldering corpse, and Athalea is galvanized into attacking the Usurper, but there is a surprise nonsensical plot featuring usurpers bratty daughter who steals the scepter spell, but she is captured so it doesn't matter. The rebels use this as a pretense to attack the castle anyway.

Fortunately after burning out his bulb on numerous other Corman projects including the Deathstalker flicks, writer Howard Cohen read Robin Hood and lifted the plot wholesale, so this flick is more interesting than Barbarian Queen, though lower budget. Lana is only slightly more willing to fill the "talent" quota in this one, and only one other person follows suit. Blame it on Catholicism or an excess of plot, but let’s not pretend here, Corman’s sour apple has fallen a long way from Conan’s tree, Lana is the only thing that makes each bitter bite worth chewing.

A slightly better version of the original cover art by Boris Valejo who also did all the covers for the Deathstalker movie. I'm pretty sure they were just paintings he'd already done that New Concorde bought the rights to (Roger Corman is very cheap). Valejo is one of the kings of hairspray and baby oil barbarian art back in the day. His most recent movie work was the Aqua Teen Hunger Force Movie poster

No comments: