- Movie Rating -

Yor: The Hunter from the Future (1989)

| August 19, 1983

Looking back, I really don’t think that Yor: The Hunter from the Future should have arrived for theatrical release on the exact same weekend as Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn.  Not that either film is in danger of making the other look bad, but seeing both in such proximity to one another is likely to sour your perception of the fate of American cinema.

On the whole, Yor is slightly better.  Yeah, both movies rip-off successful films but somehow this movie seems less oppressive, less affected because, well, you get the sense that they didn’t try as hard.  It’s a rip-off of Conan the Barbarian filtered down to an obvious milking of the popularity of “Masters of the Universe” but it isn’t as robust as the first nor as commercially pliable as the second.  It’s kind of the derpy, watered-down cousin of both.  It’s cute but you don’t take it seriously.

The good news is that no one had to wonder about 3D.  It says something about the technology when it isn’t available in a sea of advertising potential that can be used to sell it to an audience that isn’t choosey about whether it will work or not.  Yor plods long blissfully in 2D and offends no one.

The movie is a dud but the poster does it no favors, featuring the star Reb Brown with a babe at his ankles, he brandishes a silly looking axe while wearing an expression suitable for a sore foot.  The movie itself is just as half-baked.  Parlaying a rip-off of Conan is bad enough but the filmmakers make the same mistake as those responsible for Krull in that they mash up genres into a recipe that feels like raw eggs on yogurt.

Yor is, I think, a caveman with a pageboy haircut, a furry loincloth and shaggy boots, just like He-Man.  He wields a battle axe, just like He-Man.  He’s adept at taking out marauding reptiles and even more marauding fellow Neanderthals.  He rescues a real cutie named Kalaa (Corinne Clery), afterwhich they scoure the wastelands and discover a technologically advanced civilization controlled by Overlord who wants to . . . well, you know.

It’s not the story we’re after, it’s the action, and Yor has a lot of it.  It’s not good by any definition, but it is here and it happens.  Much of the failure of the action falls on leading man Red Brown who looks silly loping around rocky terrain in shaggy boots.  He has a silly look on his face that is suppose to be charismatic but looks more like he’s dropping IQ points.  He’s got a theme song that seems to be trying to ape that of Flash Gordon (take a listen) but it doesn’t quite rise to that occasion.  The movie itself never rises to any occasion.  It does what it does, takes you through the paces and doesn’t dull your senses.  It’s awful, but not painfully awful.  That’s . . . praise?

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1983) View IMDB Filed in: Sci-Fi/Fantasty