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Sword-and-Sorcery epic with female lead taking on multiple adventures
and fierce battles . Thrilling and stirring movie full of imagination
and fantasy that introduces us a brave heroine , female counterpart to
Conan , she leads a valiant tribe of women who dares to be free . This
is a delightful action/adventure romp set in the Dark Ages , where
savage and violent men enslave all women . There appears a valiant
warrior woman , her name is Hundra (Laurene Landon) , a Red Sonja-alike
, she was born in a tribe of fierce warrior women . Hundra is an archer
and sword fighter , whose Amazon tribe was wiped by nasty Vikings in
some scenes similarly shot to Conan film . Hundra is superior to any
male , woman of beauty , a warrior of strength , a hunter of man .
Hundra The Invincible finds her family slain and takes a vow of
vendetta until one day she meets her match (Ramiro Oliveros) .
This exciting film packs noisy action , adventure, and rip-roaring fights . Dumb images , unintentionally hilarious and lots of amusement and entertainment . Made on a fairly middling scale with passable set design , glimmer photography and excellent musical score . This entertaining picture contains frenetic action , tension , bloody fights , and moving action scenes , including blood , gore and beheading . The film is full of freaks and bemusing situations ; it is quite entertaining because being a laborious and intriguing adventure tale with some unintentional humor . Sympathetic performance by Laurene Landon as Hundra the Invincible , a valiant woman who has been raised to despise the influence of men , she the finest warrior of her people . Laurene Landon executed almost all of her own stunts in the film , the only stunt she didn't carry out was a backwards fall from a high tower . Agreeable support cast full of Spanish actors such as Maria Casal , Luis Lorenzo and Spaghetti usual as Eduardo Fajardo , Fernando Bilbao and Frank Braña . Although all the dialogue and dubbing for this movie proceeded by nice actors was looped in post-production . Colorful and evocative cinematography by John Cabrera . Very derivative special effects , acceptable production design and matte paintings . Impressive musical score composed and conducted by the master Ennio Morricone . The picture was shot in La Pedriza , Manzanares , Madrid , Texas Hollywood-Fort Bravo, Almeria , Spain and ¨Condor¨ fortress , where was filmed several Spaghetti/Paella Western as ¨ Blind man, Massacre at Fort Holman¨, ¨A man called Noon¨ , ¨El Condor¨ and ¨Conan the Barbarian¨ .
The motion picture was middlingly directed by Matt Cimber . He has directed all kind of genres , in the mid 70s did three immensely enjoyable blaxploitation pictures : The Black Six (1973) , Lady Cocoa (1975) and the terrifically trashy The Candy Tangerine Man (1975) . Matt made a rare foray into the horror genre with the disturbing psychological shocker The Witch Who Came from the Sea (1976) . His next work was based on a Mario Puzo story, a World War II drama A Time to die (1982) starring Rex Harrison and Rod Taylor . Later that year Matt teamed up with Pia Zadora for two films : the underrated Butterfly (1982 ) , Orson Welles last film , and the fun Fake-out (1982) . The following year Matt joined forces with actress Laurene Landon for Hundra (1983) and Yellow Hair & the Pecos Kid (1984) , both of them being shot in Spain with similar cast and technicians . The film will appeal to adventure buffs with enough action to make it worth looking in on . In other words , it seem likely Conan enthusiasts and juvenile viewers will be delighted because thrills, action and adventures are regularly presented and edited to offer the enough impact . Rating : 5,5 ; it's an old-fashioned B film on an acceptable scale and basically enjoyable because of it.
I think people over analyse the film. Laurene Landon was the original
action woman of the 80's. She played a wrestler in All the Marlbes and
did several more strong woman roles after that.
People have also said they don't know why the Amazon tribe was attached at the start. Were they watching the film? The female narrator makes it clear that the men feared the women living a life on their own and either wanted to enslave them or kill them.
As for the nudity part. It's obvious is it not? The women were meant to be shown as worthless slaves, pieces of meat for the men to use as they pleased.
The one point I'd make is that ALL the men in the film are for the most part shown to be utter pigs and violent to woman. No one seems to have noted that, instead it's "Oh look a naked woman" I don't think I've seen a film where so many groin kicks were administered by one woman! I think it's a film worthy of a remake. There has been a lack of Amazon style films over the last few years. It seems a shame when there are so many good looking muscled women actors (like Cory Everson) out there.
A big,rip-roaring sword and sorcery piece that gallops along to a thunderous score by Ennio Morricone, "HUNDRA" as played with tongue firmly in cheek by Laurene Landon is a fun ride through a magical world probably inhabited by Conan,Red Sonja and many other sword wielders of their ilk.There is some weird stuff going on in the big action climax with one bad guy suffocated in a fashion that most guys would beg for(those who have seen this movie will know exactly what I mean) This action romp is never going to make anyone's top 100 but what it does it does well at least it did until "XENA" came along and re-invented this entire genre.
Hundra, a fabulous warrior woman sets out to punish via execution as
many of us wicked man things she can. All of us drunken, slobbering,
sexually obsessed men need death and she is more than happy to deliver.
All the while she hopes to find that one "special" guy who will give
her a baby. The guy she takes aim at just happens to be a doctors...soo
Hundra is a very nicely produced eighties sword and sandal epic that produces its share of entertainment on various levels. Yeah, the entire concept is kinda dumb but its actually one of the better Conan type films made in that era...the genre was not done justice. The costumes look pretty decent and the on location filming is a big plus. Surprisingly, the fight scenes are better done than one would expect. This is not Shakespeare so don't approach it expecting Hamlet...K?
The lady playing Hundra is athletic and does lots of stunts, and pulls them off nicely. There isn't much need for acting here so we won't go there. If its slightly campy action and adventure you crave...you could do a lot worse than Hundra!!! PS...the thing with the dog is a big plus...not really, but cool anyhow!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The inexplicable craze for sword and sorcery during the 1980s saw some
good films (Conan The Barbarian, The Beastmaster), some decidedly
average film (The Sword And The Sorcerer, Hearts And Armour) and some
downright abysmal films (Ator The Invincible, Gor, Deathstalker, and
many more which I don't have ample space to list here). The only real
surprise is that a genre of such limited appeal managed to stick around
for the best part of seven or eight years, especially considering how
shamelessly these movies tended to rip each other off. A peculiar
sub-genre which arose at the time was that of the 'Feminist Fantasy
Film' best described as Conan-style movies in which the main
character is always portrayed by a woman with considerable
sword-wielding prowess. Well-known titles in this field would include
the likes of Red Sonja, Gwendoline and Barbarian Queen, but the first
film to use this idea was actually the 1983 offering Hundra. Alas,
apart from introducing a new slant to this Neanderthal genre, Hundra
comes across as a pretty dismal movie.
A tribe of women survive in the wilderness without a single man amongst their number. The only time they mix with the male species at all is when they wish to be impregnated. Even then, if they give birth to a boy they simply give the baby away and try again until they have a girl. One member of the tribe fierce, independent warrioress Hundra (Laurene Landon) refuses to have any dealings with man-folk and proudly declares that she will never have children, preferring instead to hunt and kill and serve as a protector to the tribe. One day, while Hundra is away on an expedition, the entire tribe is slaughtered by an army of men. When Hundra returns, she finds that she is the last of her kind and the only way she can repopulate the tribe is by going amongst the very men that massacred her brethren to find a suitable mate. She finds the task repugnant but accepts it anyway, as it is the only way to ensure her people will live on. But her fighting instinct refuses to stay down and she is soon leading a rebellion against the men-folk and their chauvinistic ways.
It's hard to find many positives to say about Hundra. It has the dubious honour of inventing its own sub-genre, which is something at least, and the score from Ennio Morricone is every bit as lively and catchy as one would expect from this composer. Some of the battle sequences, especially early on, are put together quite competently too (though I would hesitate to call them truly rousing examples of screen spectacle). Apart from that, the film is a pretty sorry affair. None of the actors come across well despite their enthusiasm the thick sound and awful lighting embarrasses them every step of the way. The film's message is as muddled as its perceived target audience on the one hand, we are told how misogynistic men are and asked to celebrate as a woman hacks them down to size; yet at the same time we have this crusading warrioress riding around on her horse in the nude, showing plenty of tit, bum and pubic hair. It's like the film sets out to challenge cinematic degradation of women, but is happy to join in with it too, which is confusing and stupid in equal measure. The best way to approach Hundra is as a pure sword and sorcery film it might not be a very good example of the genre, but it sure beats trying to figure out the movie's unfathomably cockeyed politics!
I don't care for the sword-and-sandal fantasy genre that permeated the
80's with movies like the CONAN films and RED SONJA and BEASTMASTER.
This was probably because I was only a child with no one to introduce
me to them and, growing up, they just looked like live action heavy
metal album covers, and I've never gone back to see what I've been
missing since. But I've recently stumbled on one that's not half bad.
Far from the level of CONAN and its ilk, the low-budget HUNDRA makes up
for its flaws with heart and intent. It's set on an alternate world
where women are second-class citizens, treated as property or pets. At
some point in the past, a band of women broke away from the men-centric
society to form a roaming band of nomads that only interact with the
world of men when they need to impregnation. Except one member of the
tribe, Hundra (Laurene Landon), can't be bothered to contribute a
child. She'd rather continue being a warrior/huntress and let her
younger sister do all the child-bearing. One fateful day, while Hundra
is out on a hunting run, her tribe is attacked by a band of barbarian
men who rape and pillage, leaving no survivors. When she returns to
find everyone she's ever known and loved slaughtered, Hundra consults
an oracle as to how she should proceed. The answer to Hundra's
how she could best avenge her people and such
is to get
pregnant. And so Hundra must enter the world of men and find a suitable
mate with which to fulfill her destiny.
What I think I enjoy most about HUNDRA is that it feels like a horribly misogynistic film with a main character who didn't get the memo and proceeds to rebel against the script and film itself as the ultimate icon of women empowerment. It would be one thing if the men were just abusive and sexist, but the fact that Hundra's destiny is to find a nice man and get pregnant, and that she's cool with it, means the women don't seem too keen on fighting this imagery. When Hundra first comes face-to-face with Pateray (Ramiro Oliveros), a healer in the city of men where she spends the second half of the film, and he turns her away because he's not the type of dude to randomly sleep with any woman who comes crashing through his roof, her response is to allow herself to get captured and imprisoned in the temple where she knows she'll receive training in proper use of lipstick, eye shadow, and forks. If Pateray won't have her as is, she'll doll herself up and make herself a proper lady. It feels like a major tonal conflict with literally everything else in the movie. I mean, this is the same woman who routinely spits at the very idea of allowing herself to get close to a man and spent a previous scene blowing off some steam by giving a potential rapist the beating of his life. It could just be that I'm having a hard time understanding what it is this movie is attempting to tell me (and, keep in mind, this came out in 1983 it was a different time) and I'm just infinitely amused at how this is the most misogynistic "girl power" film I've ever seen.
This isn't your average low-budget fare either. The production value on this film is actually pretty impressive for what it is. The production design and costuming were commendable. The fight choreography, not so much. Most of the fights were more humorous than heart-pounding, with blows flying slowly and uncoordinated. But we get plenty of them. Hundra is, after all, a warrior. And Laurene Landon is giving it her all, even if her performance is wooden. I think because her heart is in it as much as it is, I found it easier to forgive the fact that she wasn't the greatest actress. Few people in this movie are, with exceptions for Ramiro Oliveros (who was genuinely decent) and Luis Lorenzo (who gave a scene-chewing performance as the high priest's adviser in charge of sex slaves). All combined, I suppose HUNDRA is on par with your average cable TV movie but just a little crazier. HUNDRA was written and directed by Matt Cimber, and I love when low budget movies are written and directed by the same person (bonus points if produced as well) because it means there's a lower chance that someone will stand up to them when things just aren't working. It's how I choose to explain scenes such as Hundra's random battle with a painted dwarf on a pony wielding a pitchfork and Hundra's naked, horseback jaunt along the beach that, again, seemed to serve no purpose other than to increase the film's level of nudity. Cimber thought they'd be iconic scenes and add legitimacy, but they're memorable for the complete opposite reason.
Striving to be more than it is, HUNDRA falls short but manages to entertain in spite (and perhaps in part) of its shortcomings. Of the half dozen Z-grade movies I've treated myself to recently, HUNDRA is probably the only one I'd be willing to acknowledge as genuinely entertaining and not just schlocky fun. The plot's a little stupid, the messages seem confused, and the tones are all over the place (the rapist beatdown is accompanied by music suitable for the sweetest scenes in THE PRINCESS BRIDE) but despite all that, Hundra is a strong female presence in a movie that tries its hardest to whip her in line. Hundra may be destined to get pregnant to save her kind, but she's doing it on her terms. I enjoyed watching her battle against the tyrannical world of men and I'm frankly a little surprised this one doesn't have more of a cult following.
In a mythological land, a female tribe is slaughtered by marauding male
barbarians leaving the warrior Hundra as the lone survivor. She sets
out to find a suitable male to mate with to re-start a new tribe. Soon,
she winds up in a walled city run by a group of chauvinistic men.
Hundra has the one original angle of being a feminist slant on the sword and sorcery cycle of films from the mid-80's. The genre had been usually typified by scantily clad barbarian women with little in the way of political correctness. So Hundra stands out a little from the crowd, although Red Sonja from a few years later was coming from a similar place. That said, it isn't above having the heroine ride her horse naked into the ocean for an unorthodox bath! In fairness, it's hardly the most gratuitous nudity and the film overall is noticeably less dependent on erotic moments than most others from this type of flick. Laurene Landon is spirited in the title role. She clearly does a lot of her own stunts and gives a very physical performance.
It's not a great film though sadly. The main problem is that its pace lags in the middle too much. After a great start the action slows down once the heroine arrives at the city. This means that it feels like the running time could have been reduced by ten to fifteen minutes. But, that said, there are good fight scenes that bookend the film. And the production values overall seem pretty good with some decent locations and a stirring Ennio Morricone score to add some additional class. In the final analysis, Hundra is no classic and is weak in its middle section but it does have some good things about it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Fierce and fearless warrior woman Hundra (a splendidly sassy and spirited portrayal by gorgeous Amazonian blonde goddess Laurene Landon) declares open war on vile and oppressive misogynistic male swine after her whole village gets butchered by a foul horde of guy marauders. Moreover, Hundra must find a worthy man to impregnate her so she can keep the bloodline of her people alive. Ably directed by Matt Cimber, with a clever and witty script by Cimber and frequent collaborator John Goff (the plot basically serves as a nifty metaphor for the many ways men tend to degrade and dominate over women), several stirring and well-staged swordfights, a handy helping of raw and bloody violence (the opening massacre sequence is especially brutal), bright, crisp, glowing widescreen cinematography by John Cabrera, a constant brisk pace, breathtaking Spanish countryside scenery, a decent sprinkling of tasty nudity, a winning sense of tongue-in-cheek humor (at one point Hundra encounters an aggressive face-painted midget on horseback who attacks her with a pitchfork!), and a first-rate rousing'n'robust full-bore orchestral score by the great Ennio Morricone, "Hundra" makes for an immensely fun and satisfying little corker. Neat supporting performances by John Ghaffari as sleazy high priest pimp Nepakin, Ramiro Oliveros as nice, gentle healer Pateray, Maria Casal as obedient and subservient harem girl Tracima, and Tamara as wise elder Chrysula. Best of all, Landon attacks her plumb lead role with tremendously thrilling gusto and passion: Laurene looks simply smashing in her buckskin outfit, wields a truly mean sword, delivers her pro-woman speeches with fiery aplomb, and even performed almost all of her own stunts. A very cool and entertaining romp.
Beautiful blonde warrior woman Hundra (Laurene Landon) would rather
have a good horse between her legs than a man, but after a savage
attack on her tribe by a horde of hairy barbarians she is forced to
seek out a mate to ensure the continuation of her people.
Matt Cimber's Hundra supposedly turns the tables on the male-dominated fantasy genre with a barbarian woman who is more than a match for any man; it soon becomes apparent, however, that the feminist angle is just for show, the film exploiting its female star's physical appealand that of the other women in the filmjust as much as any other B-movie trash. Bad news for the women's liberation movement, but good news for fans of sexy ladies in small loincloths.
Landon's wooden delivery of her lines makes it abundantly clear that she was not hired for her acting ability, but rather for her sex appeal and athleticism. Hundra might swing her sword as skillfully as any Cimmerian, but she does so in a skimpy outfit that frequently gives glimpses of her shapely behind; when she's not fighting, she likes to go for a naked ride through the surf on her horse.
Cheap titillation aside, Cimber's movie is at its most entertaining whenever there is fighting, the blood flowing freely as Hundra hacks and stabs at her opponents; however, there is a prolonged absence of action once our heroine enters a city where the local high priest, whose temple doubles as a knocking shop for barbarians, vows to add her to his stock of subservient women. While avoiding capture, Hundra falls in love, gets pregnant, gives birth to a daughter, and teaches a slave girl how to fight, all of which is fairly dull to watch.
Things eventually pick up for a rousing finalé (aided immensely by Ennio Morricone's epic score) in which Hundra rallies the women to revolt against their captors, but despite more bloodletting and the hilarious demise of the high priest (a woman suffocates him by straddling his face), Hundra remains a fairly mediocre affair overall.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
In the past few weeks, I've watched a number of movies with
Amazon-style man-hating tribes who only seek the company of men for the
purposes of procreation. In this one, the Amazons are wiped out by a
band of men. Wiped out, that is, except for a hunter/warrior named
Hundra (Laurene Landon) who vows to get even for the slaughter of her
sisters. It's also up to Hundra to repopulate her tribe if it is to
survive. But to do so, Hundra will need the help of the very same men
she seeks for revenge.
Based on my rating, it should be obvious that I have some real problems with Hundra. Tops on that list would be the film's terribly mixed message. The movie tries to incorporate a lot of pseudo-feminist mumbo-jumbo into its plot with little success. It's all for show. You see the film is terribly hypocritical. On the one hand, the film seems to be trying to explore the empowerment of women - but at the same time the film exploits the very same women it purports to empower. The filmmakers seem to be trying to have their cake and eat it to (Is that cliché enough for ya?). Getting past the film's mixed message, Hundra is, for the most part, a poorly made, badly paced, and horribly acting movie. You would think that a plot involving this much bloodshed and sex would hold a little more interest. I, however, found myself nodding off several times throughout the movie. Dull and uninteresting doesn't begin to describe it. The version I saw clocked in at about 1:45 or about 30 minutes longer than it should have. As for the film's lead Laurene Landon, she's honestly one of the worst actresses I've seen in a while. Her delivery is so unnatural that it's distracting. Finally, the fight choreography is abysmal. Between Landon's unconvincing movements and the lack of any creativity in the fights, these scenes seem to drag on forever. And it doesn't help that the longest fight during Hundra's climax was shown in slow-motion.
Before I end this, I feel I should mention one very obvious highlight of Hundra Ennio Morricone's score. It far exceeds anything else in the movie. It might not be Morricone's best, but it's certainly memorable. There's one particular piece of music played during the film's final fight scene that almost makes the movie worthwhile. It's that good.
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