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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Gor (1988)



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A college professor has a mystical ring, where, if you wear it during a car accident, it transports you to a fantastical world where vegetation does not exist and people fight with cardboard swords over rocks that make electronic noises. The professor is found by the citizens of an oppressed village and seen as their savior; so they take off his clothes and teach him to fight. None of the film makes any degree of sense; for instance, a badguy hears a digital watch beeping from fifty feet away on the other side of a rock ledge over the sounds of twenty horses and fifty people marching through the desert, rattling the chains around their ankles. Rebecca Ferratti would make a more convincing warrior if she was wearing some sort of protective armor or if she didn't look like she was holding a sword for the first time...or if she could act. But as bad as she is, she acts rings around the lead, Urbano Barberini, who's so gratingly cornball in the delivery of his lines, even the most insecure member of the audience will be convinced he can do better -- and he'd probably be right. What's puzzling is what convinced distinguished actors Oliver Reed and Jack Palance to appear, billed underneath the two horrendous leads; sadly, their combined screen time is far too little to salvage anything out of this travesty. (Jack Palance, for instance, is slapped in at the end solely as a set up for the sequel.) But as rock bottom bad as Gor is, I found myself (I'm ashamed to admit) actually somewhat enjoying the film as brainless cheesy fun. The frustrating thing is that even this didn't last; the final third is excruciatingly tiresome, seems four times as long as the first hour, and makes even less sense.

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