Sword of Vengeance (2015)    0 Stars


Sword of Vengeance (2015)
Sword of Vengeance (2015)


Director: Jim Weedon

Cast: Stanley Weber, Edward Akrout, Misa Beric

Synopsis: A nameless stranger leads villagers in a rebellion against Norman invaders shortly after the Battle of Hastings.

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If the 300 movies had been made on a shoestring budget in a muddy field in Serbia they would look not unlike Sword of Vengeance, a sombre action flick that tries to compensate for its lack of substance by overloading on the style.   It’s from the makers of Hammer of the Gods, which is apparently meant to mean something judging from what a big deal the publicity material makes of the connection.  Chances are, having watched this movie you’re not going to go seeking out their earlier effort.

It takes place in England immediately after the Norman invasion of 1066.   The North of Britain cowers beneath the harsh regime of its brutal overlord and his two warring sons, but hope comes in the form of an angry young man (Stanley Weber) known only as Shadow Walker (that’s right – he’s a Man With No Name) who makes short work of a bunch of soldiers who foolishly try to extract taxes from him for walking across common ground.   Eventually, Shadow Walker becomes the leader of a rebellion against the invaders, and is joined in his crusade by a woman named Anna (Annabelle Wallis – X-Men: First Class) who spends so much time looking at the world from beneath a lowered brow it’s tempting to believe she has a serious neck problem.

That’s about it story-wise.   We know nothing more about the characters at the end of the movie than we did when the DVD was pushed through our letterbox, thanks largely to the fact that dialogue is kept to an absolute minimum – which is something of a blessing considering how poor it is (I had to laugh when, in ‘the making of’ featurette, director Jim Weedon enthused over how he read the script in one sitting: it must have taken him all of ten minutes).   Weedon, whose feature debut this is, makes a decent enough job of the directing, even though he opts for a visually murky, de-saturated look most of the time.   He doesn’t have enough story to work with, though, and repeatedly reverts to endless slow-motion shots.

If you like movies that revel in shots of men having their throats cut and others roaring at the sky, Sword of Vengeance will probably prove to be an acceptable time-filler; for most of us, though, it’s a waste of good eyesight.

(Reviewed 22nd June 2015)

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