In this instance, I can't tell you why I loved 1985's Red Sonja. Seriously. I've no idea. It's a film that's occasionally so goofily made that I wonder how anyone could love it. Its performances are all a bit wooden. Its story is a bit of a Conan rehash (for good reason, I suppose). And it certainly doesn't boast any immortal or enduring legacy.
And still ... here I am ... confessing that I still love it.
Now, far be it from me to deny the appeal of Brigitte Nielsen. No, I'm not saying that she had the chops necessary to pull off this role as it was lifted from the pages of author Robert E. Howard's various epic Fantasy yarns. Like Arnold Schwarzenegger who appears alongside her throughout a good portion of the action, she's a bit ... erm ... stoic? At times, she sounds like she meant what she was saying, but I honestly wonder if a stronger script -- something a bit less formulaic -- might've been something that could've aided the budding actress to produce better results. She certainly looks the part, so maybe I'm just being thankful for small miracles.
For those of us who grew up watching what sufficed as Fantasy movies from these dark, dark years, the occasional adventure that looked a bit something like Red Sonja was the best we truly could hope for. Studios didn't exactly have a track record at producing the kind of thing that could stand shoulder-to-shoulder alongside 1982's Conan The Barbarian, and we were definitely more than a few years away from the TV counterparts like Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess. Certainly, one might even suggest that Red Sonja shares more in common aesthetically with Hercules and Xena (though Mr. Schwarzenegger's participation in this one might beg to differ), as it was accomplished on an obviously more affordable scale.
So maybe being appreciative of its smaller charm and some reasonable interesting production details (I remember in particular just loving a few of its massive sets) is the best way to celebrate a flick that's far more 'cult' than it is 'good' ... not that there's anything wrong with that. Somewhere out there in one of Earth's many alternate timelines, I'd like to think that Red Sonja was a massive hit and spawned a series of like-minded features ... or maybe I'm just forever smitten by a massive redhead swinging a mighty sword.
As always, thanks for reading ... and live long and prosper!