Uwe Boll is truly a magical and fascinating creature. Heís like a cross between Ed Wood and Post-Blackjack John Woo, and heís so pissed off by his reputation that heís actually kickboxed his detractors. Itís cocksmanship of the most edgy from a man who is clearly out of his element and mind. Uwe Bollís problem isnít that heís an incompetent director who works with heavyweight talents like uh, Eric Roberts, Clint Howard, and Michael Pare (Eddie and the Cruisers was only 24 years ago) In fact, the manís problem isnít that he makes worthless shit-fests that fester on like a bad case of herpes. No, his problem is that he didnít make movies 20 years ago when such shit wouldíve been seen as talent. The 80s, such as it was, was a time for oiled men, contempt for women, and tons of blissful idiocy that passed as entertainment. In other words, Uwe Boll is a pretentious 80s hack making movies in the wrong decade. Iím guessing that Golan and Globus and their rip-offs wouldíve given even bigger budgets (at the time) than Michael Dudikoff and Richard Lynch, and then wouldíve told Uwe to impress them. I donít doubt it, as these geniuses gave us Ninja III, which combined Ninjitsu and break-dancing without breaking a sweat.
This brings us to In The Name Of The King: Dungeon Siege Tale, which is hands down a title of true epic genius. I mean, it doesn’t have the ring of Breakiní 2: Electric Boogaloo, but itís certainly snappy as all fuck. This is probably the closest youíll get to sheer Golan/Globus moronic incompetence without dipping into the classic catalog, which includes such orgasmic bloodbaths such as Invasion USA, American Ninja, Cyborg and Murphyís Law. Like these masterpieces of the form, itís a movie that takes itself as seriously as rape, and like the Cannon canon, itís a hang-out for washed up actors, almost-stars, and various people still milking the image of their one and only memorable role. For instance, take Missing In Action – it had Chuck Norris, but also a slew of actors who werenít exactly household names. I mean, M. Emmett Walsh, James Hong, Professor Toru Tanaka and Soon Tech Oh. Here, we get Ray Liotta, Jason Statham, and Burt Fucking Reynolds. But also the never quite stars, like Leelee Sobieski, Matthew Lillard, Clare Forlani, and Kristana Loken, as well as the genre favorites John Rhys Davies and Ron Perlman. This isnít a cast, itís a group of people trying hard to hang on tightly to their C-list status.
The movieís special effects are also just as bad as the Cannon films. Take these monsters which are made from cheap CGI that would barely pass muster on a Sci-Fi original movie. These things are clunky, ridiculous, boring, and not at all that imposing of a threat. Thereís some type of bullshit surrounding Ray Liotta wanting to take over a kingdom in which Jason Statham has to oppose him, because Statham is also the rightful prince to the throne. And with the help of tree people (?), a group of soldier boy grunts and some sorcery, he does so. He also wants to save his wife from the clutches of the evil Ray Liotta, which is understandable, since a now-geriatric Ray Liotta is a prime stud. He always has been, even when he raped Pia Zadora with a garden hose. I mean, Ray scores a sex scene with Leelee Sobieski, and this just proves Liotta is the man. He doesnít have the turn you gay vibe that Van Damme has, but itís pretty close.
The movie is basically one long battle sequence with embarrassed actors reciting lines that sound translated from Greek gibberish, while trying hard to convince themselves that theyíre fighting CGI monsters and giving a fuck about what is going on. Uwe Boll of course captures all the action with a surreal touch not seen since 1987ís Cannon epic Penitentiary III. Boll also gives us the blessed Cannon styled post apocalyptic narrative style, mainly a film which is beefed up by pointless sequences that could be flashbacks, or character development, but are completely nonsensical. In all regards, this is when a hack takes his material and runs with it so far the wrong way, he actually manages to make it fantastic. And fantastic, this movie is.
In the end in a time, where good movies are rare, camp completely MIA and nothing but streams of cliched and insipid garbage stinking up theaters, itís nice to see one man take his retarded ambitions and vision and showcase them for our unintentional laughter. I mean, we lost Golan/Globus, PM Studios (sultans of shit that gave us C. Thomas Howell/Don ďThe DragonĒ Wilson in car chase fueled dumbness), Vidmark (the crap kings that gave us Leprechaun and Cyborg Cop movies!), etc. It is sad that Uwe Boll is the only one still up to the challenge of giving us golden morsels of shit that will be laughed at 20 some years from now.