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Monday, June 07, 2010

Movie Review: Highlander - The Source

Highlander - The SourceI only heard about this movie recently and I have to say I was kinda surprised. I thought that after failing THREE TIMES IN A ROW to create a successful sequel to Highlander that the various studio types had learned their lesson. Not so. Apparently someone somewhere thought it was positively vital that the saga of Duncan McCleod have a definitive end point (yeah Duncan, the guy from the TV series and Highlander Endgame).

So what's it all about? The movie starts by reminding us that there are certain odd side effects to being immortal, namely that they can only die by decapitation, they gain in power and knowledge when they decapitate a fellow immortal and they cannot bear children. Of the three only the last part is significant because it is apparently the whole damned point of the film but realistically it wasn't necessary to remind us of ANY of those things because the characters constantly talk about them during the movie.

It's hard to get into plot specifics because there really aren't any. Sure things happen in the film but they're not really connected to each other in any significant way other than it says they are in the script, which I guess means we the audience are simply supposed to accept them. There's something about a prophecy, there's an uber-immortal bad-ass called "The Guardian", there's a place on an island somewhere which is evidently a direct line to God under the right conditions, the world's gone to post-apocalyptic shit, the woods are populated by leather-bound cannibals and there's a physically impossible planetary alignment taking place.

Now when I say "physically impossible", I don't just mean the planets have aligned in a manner not normally possible, like say spinning backwards or radically tilting on their axis, I mean it's COMPLETELY FUCKING IMPOSSIBLE for the ENTIRE SOLAR SYSTEM to not only align itself with but move within visible range of the Earth within ONE WEEK and yet somehow not cause complete and total ecological destruction to the Earth owing to the shifted gravitational influences of said planets.

Oh but right, I forgot "the Source" is a direct line to God and the since God is all-powerful and stuff he can basically dick around with the laws of physics in whatever way amuses him. Sigh... I don't want to get off on a theological tangent but I swear every time I come across something this breathtakingly stupid in a movie it makes me want to drown the writer in a font full of Holy Water (although I'm sure the irony would be lost on them). Suffice it to say, an all-knowing, all-powerful deity would not need to be so damned "showy" to make his presence felt and I'm really, REALLY getting tired of seeing that nobody in Hollywood gets that. No wonder the Evangelicals say it's a godless town...

Now I suppose it's possible that the planets aren't really as close as they're depicted and we're simply seeing them through the eyes of the immortals whose perception is enhanced somehow owing to their part in this prophecy but if that's the case it's not really well presented at all and still doesn't explain how planets in the outer solar system are reversing their orbits in order to complete this alignment.

So what's the point of reaching "the Source" in time for the alignment? Well as you may recall the world has gone to shit at this point and supposedly "the source" can save the world. How? By making it possible for an immortal to reproduce. Yes, that's right, our boy Duncan is going to be a daddy and his kid is going to save the world!

Are you getting it yet? A world in need of "saving"? An alignment of the stars? A child conceived under miraculous conditions? Does this sound familiar to anybody at all? You know guys "Deus ex machina" doesn't always have to be so... DEUS...

Watching this movie is like having someone throw cold piss in your eyes at random intervals. It's irritating, stinks and forces you to question why you keep sitting there and taking it. I have to say that this is unequivocally the WORST film in the Highlander franchise. Yes, worse than 2 with the stupid aliens that they subsequently ignored completely going forward. At least that had Michael Ironside and the always lovely Virginia Madsen in it. What's this got? Nothing, save 90 minutes of bullshit. It's only mildly redeeming quality is a decently metal soundtrack but even that is hit and miss and the attempt to update the Highlander theme is just hackery, less homage than it is bordering on parody.

Highlander: The Source gets a rating of:




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