Sangraal - Barbarian Master

Date: December 11th, 2013

Here we have an Italian-made Conan lookalike from 1982. The film starts with a narrator filling us in on the background of the protagonist. It is the standard story: a warlord's army destroys a village, an infant child survives, grows up, takes a lot of anabolic steroids, and becomes a warrior. I was expecting a standard revenge plot line, but instead, the beefy warrior, Sangraal, and his followers are merely looking for a place to settle down. They come across a village that is under attack by another warlord and decide to help. The villagers welcome them, especially Aki, the raven-haired daughter of the village chief. Sangraal has already got a hot blonde wife, but alas, there is no catfight between the two women.

Everything seems cheery until a topless demon chick gets peeved at Sangraal, and she induces a loudmouthed warlord named Nanuk to go and capture him. (Half of Nanuk's dialog consists of him shouting "SANGRAAAAAAAL!!!!!!" while shaking his fist). So the village gets attacked, and only Sangraal and Aki survive, with the aid of an itinerant archer dude who signs on as Sangraal's sidekick. The plot has a lot of turns, and I don't want to spoil it too much, but Sangraal and his friends go on various quests, traveling through deserts and caves and forests (outdoor shots are cheaper than building elaborate sets). At one point, he risks much peril to obtain a ginormous magic crossbow. The crazy thing is like five feet (1.6 meters) long, and totally unwieldy. He barely uses it thereafter. Talk about a MacGuffin. Eventually, he fights the warlord and the topless demon chick, rescuing the now topless Aki in the process.

The version I watched was dubbed in English, but I could tell the original Italian dialog was less than brilliant. The backdrops were fairly simple – as noted above, it was mostly natural scenery and a few cheaply constructed villages consisting of two or three huts. The fight scenes were quite numerous - random dudes were jumping out from behind rocks every five minutes and attacking Sangraal for no apparent reason. But the fighting was poorly choreographed and some of the weapons looked cheap. The wardrobe was OK, mostly loincloths and primitive barbarian garb. The special effects were pretty crappy, as would be expected in a low budget film. And though I don't usually even notice the musical score in these types of films, I've got to mention that the background music in this one was awful.

Overall, I can't give the film a strong recommendation. It might have been improved with more gratuitous female nudity (isn't everything improved by gratuitous female nudity?). But with just five topless women and the various faults listed above, you might want to find another way to get your Sword and Fantasy kicks.

IMDB link. Rated R.

Sacrificing virgins in Sangraal
Warlord Nanuk sacrificing two virgins to the demon/goddess. What a waste of virgins.

Demon goddess (Xiomara Rodriguez) in Sangraal
The demon/goddess herself.

Sangraal (Pietro Torrisi)
Sangraal screaming. Note the mercury amalgam filling in his upper right molar. Yes, I notice that sort of stuff. Totally out of place in a movie set in primitive times.

Aki (Yvonne Fraschetti) getting roughed up in Sangraal
Aki getting manhandled and whipped by Nanuk's guards.

Sangraal in a fight
Lady and the tramp spaghetti
Sangraal and Nanuk fight, connected by a leather cord held in their mouths. Reminds me of a scene from another movie.

Click here to go back up to movie index