Sunday, December 16, 2018

I nuovi barbari/Warriors of the Wasteland (1983)

In school, there was always one kid that could hit it out of the park.  He’d do an essay and it would be fantastic.  Then, there was the one that was at the other end of the spectrum.  There were lazy kids, then there were the ones that would copy large chunks out of some encyclopedias.  Very little of their work seemed original and what was seemed uninspired  Warriors of the Wasteland seems more like the latter than the former.

The year is 2019 and the nuclear disaster is over.  Most people are happy to get on with things.  There seems to be enough food and clean water to support small groups of people.  They spend their time listening for The One True Signal, which would indicate that some remnant of civilization had survived.  At any rate, there seems to be more than enough gasoline to support a good number of cars and trucks.  (There are even a few buses.)

Then, there are the Templars.  They hate humanity and are intent on destroying those that have survived.  One is their leader, who demonstrates his hatred by ripping a Bible in half with his bare hands.  Why?  Because books are what caused humanity’s downfall.  These guys are so good at attacking people that they don’t seem to suffer casualties.  The Templars descend upon a group of survivors and within minutes, their cars are up in flames.

Enter Scorpion.  This sounds like the perfect name for a bad guy.  In fact, he used to be one of the bad guys, but has since turned good.  He even rescues Alma, who was hurt in an attack.  Scorpion brings her to a group that happens to have a guy who’s good at fixing things.  He has no medical training, but can seem to repair anything.

It seems that One has it in for Scorpion.  I‘m not sure what happened between the two of them, but it must be bad.  After One captures Scorpion, we’re treated to a psychedelic rape scene.  Yes, One cuts Scorpion’s belt and ostensibly penetrates him.  Scorpion’s pants then miraculously get pulled back up after it‘s all done.

Oh, and there’s a guy named Nadir that comes in and helps Scorpion when he needs it.  I think he bought the Never-Ending Arrows from Olive Garden because he always has one available.  (It’s like one of those guns that can shoot 100 bullets without reloading.)  One interesting thing is that he has explosives that can attach to the arrows.  We get to see several heads and torsos blow up.

Then we have Young Mechanic, who is a small child who is really good with cars.  He looks like someone who was rejected for a Dennis the Menace project for looking a little too much like Dennis.  I supposed if you find a good mechanic, especially after the apocalypse, you can’t really complain.

I think the thing that stands out the most about this movie is how strange it all is.  I mean, how is it that a young boy is able to work on cars like that?  Even if he comes from a long line of mechanics, we never see anyone else around teaching him anything.  It’s like the nuclear radiation imbued him with superhuman mechanic skills.

Most of this is due to how much is left out of the movie.  There’s no text explaining what caused the apocalypse.  We don’t know how the groups formed.  Things that are necessary, like cars and lights, seem to just work.  I suppose it would stand to reason that someone had either found or developed solar power.  Maybe the cars were rigged to run on electricity.  Also, why do so many of the actors look like other actors?  We even have someone that bears a striking resemblance to Edward James Olmos.

As with other post-apocalyptic stories, it stays in one area.  At least there is some mention of looking for others, but this comes only in the form of a radio signal.  People get excited about Morse code, but I don’t think anyone translated anything.  The signal could be saying that all other life was destroyed.  Maybe people are being invited to a certain point or being told to stay away from certain irradiated areas.  We’ll never know.

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