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The Treasure of the 4 Crowns, a low budget Raiders of the Lost Ark ripoff, was part of a brief 3D revival in the early 80s; on video, shorn of the novelty of an extra dimension, the film loses any impact it once had and ends up a tedious and unexciting affair.
Tony Anthony, the rather piggy-faced star of Comin' at Ya! (another 80s 3D movie), stars as J. T. Stryker, a treasure hunter who gathers together a group of fellow adventurers to steal some mystical crowns from a heavily guarded fortress (owned by a strange cult).
Opening with a scene in a deserted castle, where J.T. faces deadly booby-traps in order to find a magical key, director Ferdinando Baldi makes known his intentions from the start: to steal liberally from Spielberg's movie whilst dangling everything possible into the foreground for maximum 3D effect.
The story is quite simply awful, the acting rather poor, and the special effects lousy. Scenes specially shot to make the most of the 3D technology look quite ridiculous, and the wires supporting many of the objects 'floating' in the foreground are clearly visible.
The finale, which sees J. T. and his team reaching the crowns and unleashing their 'awesome' power, is particularly confusing: J. T.'s head spins round and round, Exorcist style, and then he shoots flames from his hands. The main bad guy, cult leader Jonas, has his face sliced up by lasers and then gets roasted by J. T.'s flamethrowers. Bizarre.
And as if that wasn't enough, a final shot sees a strange snake-like creature leap out of a swamp, for no apparent reason.
On a positive note, Ennio Morricone's score is pretty good (well... far too good for this tripe, anyway!).
Even if Treasure of the 4 Crowns received a proper 3D release on DVD, I would still think twice about watching it again!
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