Movie Reviews: Roadhouse and Valhalla Rising

From ripped throats and roadhouse blues to one-eyed warriors and holy quests: what's not to like?

By Matthew Van Allen
Published July 18, 2011

Retro Reload: Roadhouse (1989)

All right, here's what we have for you: flashes of Dukes of Hazzard, hints of Fists of Fury and a throat-ripping scene stolen (kind of) right out of Sonny Chiba's classic Street Fighter. We got a blues soundtrack and performance from Jeff Healey and his band, and a cameo from the infamous wrestler Terry Funk. Tie it all up with Sam Elliott in a ponytail fighting scene: fantastic!

Used car sales and beer bottle battles make this a memorable part of Swayze's career.

To See or Not to see: Forget looking for Ghost. Swayze should impress you with his karate chops and his, well, his throat-ripping scene. Props to Sam Elliott too. I love this old guy, er, I mean screen legend.

Rumor has it that there was a sequel made. Not sure what that's all about, but hey - this one was made in 1989 so it gets the seal of approval.

Recent Rental: Valhalla Rising (2009)

It's been nearly a year since I watched it, but this movie still sticks with me. Huge impact and burnt-in images, folks! Funny, a lot of people have nothing good to say about this one but I honestly believe it's the best movie on video store shelves right now.

I hate to sound like a typical reviewer but the cinematography is gorgeous, the pacing is slow but captivating, and the character of "One Eye" will leave couch psychologists searching for another subject in comparison.

The story follows an escaped prisoner (One Eye) and a boy, who unexpectedly journey with Christian knights to find and reclaim the holy lands. Six chapters separate the story: Wrath, Silent Warrior, Men of God, The Holy Land, Hell and Sacrifice.

Yup, there is obviously a lot I am leaving out as far as plot and hidden meaning go. I leave it to you to form your own opinion but I can't recall a movie like this in recent memory.

To See or Not to See: One Eye! Four Thumbs!

Matthew is the RTH film and culture critic. He runs The In Between: Moving Pictures and Culture, which you can find inside Sky Dragon at 27 King William Street.

1 Comment

View Comments: Nested | Flat

Read Comments

[ - ]

By Mogadon Megalodon (anonymous) | Posted July 18, 2011 at 09:22:20

Beside 27 King WIlliam or inside 27 King WIlliam? My curiosity is piqued.

Permalink | Context

View Comments: Nested | Flat

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to comment.

Events Calendar

There are no upcoming events right now.
Why not post one?

Recent Articles

Article Archives

Blog Archives

Site Tools