Friday, October 15, 2010

31 Days of Halloween: Ladyhawke

Halloween is a lot about horror, but also a lot about fantasy and the escape that comes from dipping into another world. Richard Donner's Ladyhawke, one of the best fantasy movies out there, the movie that defined my 80's experience and childhood is perfect for a late October night. Captain Etienne Navarre (the beautiful Rutger Hauer) and Isabeau d'Anjou (the equally beautiful Michelle Pfieffer in one of her first real roles) are cursed by an evil Bishop bent on having Isabeau for his own. The curse details are thus: by day, the Captain is a man, and Isabeau a hawk, by night, he's a wolf, and she's a woman. When an eclipse gives them the chance to finally set things right and end the torture of being "forever together, always apart," they take it, aided by the comic relief-thief Phillipe Gaston (a very young, and borderline very annoying Matthew Broderick with the worst British accent ever) who ushers the audience through the story as it unfolds before him. The film is beautifully photographed, artfully emotive, and easy to get lost in, the haunting (and extremely 80's) soundtrack by Alan Parsons and Andrew Powell only enhancing the experience.

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