6.7/10
27,926
158 user 67 critic

Heavy Metal (1981)

Trailer
1:17 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
A glowing green orb - which embodies ultimate evil - terrorizes a young girl with an anthology of bizarre and fantastic stories of dark fantasy, eroticism and horror.

Writers:

Daniel Goldberg (screenplay) (as Dan Goldberg), Len Blum (screenplay) | 9 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
3,743 ( 63)
4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Animation | Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

After surviving an invasion on her peaceful homeworld, a beautiful avenger must stop a powerful psychopath from gaining immortality and rescue her kidnapped sister.

Directors: Michael Coldewey, Michel Lemire
Stars: Michael Ironside, Julie Strain, Billy Idol
Fire and Ice (1983)
Animation | Fantasy | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

At the end of the ice age, an evil queen and her son are set on conquering the world using magic and warriors. The lone survivor of a crushed village fights back as does the king of Fire Keep.

Directors: Ralph Bakshi, Tom Tataranowicz
Stars: Randy Norton, Cynthia Leake, Steve Sandor
Wizards (1977)
Animation | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

On a post-apocalyptic Earth, a wizard and his faire folk comrades fight an evil wizard who's using technology in his bid for conquest.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Bob Holt, Jesse Welles, Richard Romanus
Fritz the Cat (1972)
Animation | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A hypocritical swinging college student cat raises hell in a satiric vision of various elements on the 1960s.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Skip Hinnant, Rosetta LeNoire, John McCurry
Heavy Traffic (1973)
Animation | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An "underground" cartoonist contends with life in the inner city, where various unsavory characters serve as inspiration for his artwork.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Joseph Kaufmann, Beverly Hope Atkinson, Frank DeKova
Rock & Rule (1983)
Animation | Fantasy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A malevolent rock star kidnaps a female singer to force her to participate in the summoning of a demon and her band must help her stop him.

Director: Clive Smith
Stars: Don Francks, Gregory Salata, Susan Roman
American Pop (1981)
Animation | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of four generations of a Russian Jewish immigrant family of musicians whose careers parallel the history of American popular music in the 20th century.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Mews Small, Ron Thompson, Jerry Holland
Animation | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The Fellowship of the Ring embark on a journey to destroy the One Ring and end Sauron's reign over Middle-earth.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Christopher Guard, William Squire, Michael Scholes
Gandahar (1988)
Animation | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An evil force from a 1000 years in the future begins to destroy an idyllic paradise, where the citizens are in perfect harmony with nature.

Director: René Laloux
Stars: Glenn Close, Christopher Plummer, Pierre-Marie Escourrou
Animation | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An outrageous, affectionate look at coming of age in the Eisenhower era in Brooklyn.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Richard Romanus, David Proval, Jesse Welles
Coonskin (1975)
Animation | Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Rabbit, a country-born trickster, takes over the organized crime racket in Harlem, facing opposition from the institutionalized racism of the Mafia and corrupt police.

Director: Ralph Bakshi
Stars: Barry White, Charles Gordone, Scatman Crothers
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Don Francks ... Grimaldi (segment "Grimaldi") / Co-Pilot (segment "B-17") / Barbarian (segment "Taarna") (voice)
Caroline Semple Caroline Semple ... Girl (segment "Grimaldi") (voice)
Richard Romanus ... Harry Canyon (segment "Harry Canyon") (voice)
Susan Roman ... Girl (segment "Harry Canyon") / Satellite (segment "Harry Canyon") (voice)
Al Waxman ... Rudnick (segment "Harry Canyon") (voice)
Harvey Atkin ... Alien (segment "Harry Canyon") / Henchman (segment "Harry Canyon") (voice)
John Candy ... Desk Sergeant (segment "Harry Canyon") / Dan (segment "Den") / Den (segment "Den") / Robot (segment "So Beautiful and So Dangerous") (voice)
Glenis Wootton Gross Glenis Wootton Gross ... Whore (segment "Harry Canyon") (voice)
Marilyn Lightstone ... Whore (segment "Harry Canyon") / Queen (segment "Den") (voice)
Jackie Burroughs ... Katherine (segment "Den") (voice)
Martin Lavut Martin Lavut ... Ard (segment "Den") (voice)
August Schellenberg ... Norl (segment "Den") / Taarak (segment "Taarna") (voice)
John Vernon ... Prosecutor (segment "Captain Sternn") (voice)
Eugene Levy ... Sternn (segment "Captain Sternn") / Male Reporter (segment "So Beautiful and So Dangerous") / Edsel (segment "So Beautiful and So Dangerous") (voice)
Joe Flaherty ... Lawyer (segment "Captain Sternn") / General (segment "So Beautiful and So Dangerous") (voice)
Edit

Storyline

An astronaut brings home a glowing green orb for his daughter. However, the green orb wipes him out and corners the girl for its purposes. Claiming to embody ultimate evil, the malevolent sphere, known as the Loc-Nar, terrorizes the little girl by showing a series of bizarre and fantastic stories it has influenced. The first is "Harry Canyon", a cynical taxi driver in a squalid futuristic New York who finds himself involved with a damsel in distress who is relentlessly pursued by murderous thugs who desire the Loc-Nar her archaeologist father found. The second is "Den", which chronicles the adventures of a nerdish teenager who is thrown into the fantasy world of Neverwhere, where he is transformed into a handsome muscleman, desired by beautiful women, who must get involved in a conflict revolving around possession of the Loc-Nar. The third is "Captain Sternn", where the title character is a handsome but irredeemable scoundrel who stands accused in a trial that the Loc-Nar throws into ... Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@home.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Columbia Pictures takes you beyond the future into a universe you've never seen before. A universe of mystery. A universe of magic. A universe of sexual fantasies. A universe of awesome good. A universe of terrifying evil. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

Canada | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 August 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Métal hurlant See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$9,300,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (premiere)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Elmer Bernstein's theme for Taarna was actually written for the character Alex in Saturn 3 (1980). The theme was never heard in the film, so Bernstein used this for this film. See more »

Goofs

When Taarna examines an evil "S" medallion on the hitched bats outside the bar, it is reversed to a "Z" when she first walks up to it. As she grabs the medallion, it goes back to the correct "S" shape. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: A shadow shall fall over the universe, and evil will grow in its path, and death will come from the skies.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The rolling text of the credits stutter upwards in rhythm with the machine sound that opens the song "Working in the Coal Mine" performed by Devo. See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD version has rough cut versions of an alternate frame story. This story shows the Grimaldi (the astronaut) bringing his daughter to a carousel. The carousel has the loknar at the center and the horses are replaced by elements of the stories. When Taarna is tortured in the last sequence, the action cuts to the carousel where the girl reacts with pain. The ending is similar, with the girl becoming the new protector. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Neverwhere (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Heartbeat
Performed by Riggs
Written by Jerry Riggs
Publisher: Mr. Sunshine Inc, BMI
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Comic fantasy ... and nothing more
2 April 2001 | by aharmonSee all my reviews

Trying to con Harry Canyon in futuristic New York City ("big deal"), striking a deal with Den, having sex with a robot (or, as he puts it, using "mechanical assistance"), bribing Hanover Fiste to testify on your behalf in court, praying for Taarna to save you. None of these things have anything in common except for the Loch-nar, a green ball supposedly containing the essence and entirety of evil.

It doesn't matter if none of this makes complete sense or if it's even that good in terms of plot construction. This is Heavy Metal!

The concept of this 1981 animated experiment is two-fold: show good and evil in a constant state of flux, and bring to life the richness and erotic energy of the popular animated magazine. Add to that some science fiction, a slight reverence for history (in the beautiful ghoul scene in the WWII B-17) and a juvenile insight into drugs and sex, and you have the definition of my '80s youth culture.

I was one of those kids who'd sneak an issue of Heavy Metal, found on the magazine stands in the local drug store next to the grocery store where my father did his weekly shopping, inside another magazine and stare at the drawings, looking for some violence and humor ... and naked women with bi g breasts. I did the same thing whenever I got my hands on a National Lampoon and, if I was lucky, Hustler.

It's pre-pubescence at its hormonal best! And seeing it again as an adult brings all that excitement back to me. Every story, every piece of music ... God, every shot for that matter -- they all bring me back to being 10 years old and wrestling with my older cousin as she tried to block my eyes when the chick Harry Canyon picks up off the street strips and slides into bed with him to the tune of Journey's "Open Arms."

This movie wasn't meant to be cinematic greatness. It was meant to be a boy's fantasy and his coming of age. Sometimes we take these things too seriously. A good movie is a good movie, and a good memory is a good memory. Let's leave it at that ... and let me get a whiff of that stuff the spaceship pilots have lined along the floor...


32 of 38 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 158 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed