DVD review: Highlander (4 out of 5)

Back in 1986 when Highlander first hit the big screen it was cutting edge sci-fi and special effects.

Monday, 11th July 2016, 8:00 am
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 2:23 am
Christopher Lambert as Highlander
Christopher Lambert as Highlander

The premise was sound enough - a group of immortals who can only be killed by being beheaded are all vying to be the final powerful survivor who would gain amazing mystical powers.

With the sultry Christopher Lambert in the title role (or Connor as he’s named), impressive direction from Russell Mulcahy in his first movie after several successful music videos, and a soundtrack by Queen who were at their peak, it had everything going for it.

Thirty years down the line and I was slightly dubious how well it had stood the test of time.

Because of its initial success there was a TV spin-off and various sequels that didn’t really hit the heights of the original and rather diluted the memory of that first film.

But I was pleasantly surprised.

I’d forgotten just how dramatic and showy the initial scenes are, with a wrestling match backdrop to the first amazing sword fight.

We also have one of the best villains you’ll likely to see with Clancy Brown as The Kurgan, an immortal with no interest in anything apart from himself.

Highlander also saw an interesting mix of co-stars, headed up by Sean Connery as another immortal Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez who takes Connor under his wing.

But we also have Celia Imrie and Beatie Edney playing two of Connor’s love interests from his long past life.

OK, so Lambert’s accent is nothing like the Scottish one he should have had and Connery’s is about as far removed from Spanish as is possible.

But actually the plot, action and direction remain good enough to prevent this from ruining the film.

And, let’s face, it - it’s Queen at the their best bashing out some of the best soundtrack music ever.

The cult classic is released today (July 11) fully restored in 4K and is on DVD and Blu-Ray with brand new bonus material that will satisfy every Highlander fan.