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Smutty Review: Wizards (1977)

Dec 01, 2017 4:44 pm
Smutty By Smutty
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Smutty is frequently talking about Heavy Metal (1981), which is a man's film if there ever was one. Before that gem saw the screen, there was Wizards (1977).

Richard Romanus, who voiced Harry Canyon in HM, happens to play the elf Weehawk in Wizards. What makes this movie special though, is that it is a Ralph Bakshi creation.

Bakshi is a master of animation, one who strayed from the crowd but still managed to stay in business. Wizards, like his other work, is cartoon-for-adults, a concept that Americans have always struggled with. It is full of violence, among other things, such as the opening act's three mutant prostitutes. (Should they sue the Kardashians for stealing their act?!)

So there are two brothers, the noble wizard Avatar and the mutated dark wizard Blackwolf. They have been this way since birth...you can tell by their flashback baby faces. Now thousands of years later, Blackwolf, evil as hell, is determined to take over Avatar's kingdom, but the plan does not work out at first. That is when Bakshi grants the wizard what — to him as a Jew — is the ultimate evil. Behold the Fuhrer arises!

As Blackwolf plays a projector, probably chocked-up with his magic, World War 2 Nazi highlights are shown to the thunderous applause of his army. Somehow they manage to unleash the fury of the Third Reich during their battles. How? Smutty would say magic, but the whole point of the film is that Blackwolf's land is technology and Avatar's land is magic. I guess he manufactured all those Nazi planes himself in his war factories, but who knows.

All confusion aside, Wizards is an acid trip. Fantasy, sci-fi, spellbinding character designs, gorgeous animation. That is, except for the filler techniques, which may offend some. For example, there is quite a bit of 'playing video with shadowing of the figures who are moving' rather than drawing them. There are video-footage skies and backgrounds to save costs. Smutty thinks it is a lovable mix but judge for yourself.

The hand-drawn animation is special, even if the "special effects" are not. In a time when we only get autogenerated and uniformly boredom "animation", we must appreciate the unique productions of the past, that required creativity and improvisation.

Bakshi is a legend, whether we like him or not, almost as good as Don Bluth. Wizards is good-natured, and at the same time, a bad-ass film. Elinore and Peace are artistic characters that cannot be forgotten. The Nazi element is played with a hint of subversion, but overall, respectfully. Smutty says Wizards is another gem, in its own way.


Smutty is the author of the best-selling book, 100 Things To Do That Are More Fun Than Sticking Your Dick into a Cigarette Lighter. Abandoned by his mother days after hatching, he has a life goal of making the world feel his pain. He enjoys thrusting his tail into all kinds of interesting places.

More articles from Smutty:
Three Marvel Fag Comics Cancelled After Award Nomination
Is the rebooted DuckTales (2017-) Worth Watching?
Ninja Gaiden or Devil May Cry?
Star Fox SNES '93, Still Fun Today?
The Aristocats (1970), Once Upon a Time Disney made Art






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