Return to "Krull" For a Fantastic Journey in Hi-Def

1983’s sci-fi fantasy adventure “Krull” gets its Blu-ray debut thanks to Mill Creek Entertainment. A failure at the box office when it originally came out, the cult classic blends together the best elements of “Star Wars,” “Excalibur,” and “The Lord of the Rings.” The end result is an occasionally slow-paced swashbuckling sword-and-sorcery tale guaranteed to thrill those waiting for it to get a high-definition release.

The mystical planet Krull is light-years beyond our universe. After it’s invaded by a malevolent creature referred to as the Beast, Prince Colwyn (Ken Marshall) must rescue his damsel-in-distress (Lysette Anthony) from its deadly clutches. He journeys across the dangerous plains of his world to the sinister Black Fortress where she is being held captive. The fearless warrior recruits a motley band of wizards, thieves, and mythical beings to go up against the Beast's army of Slayers.

“Krull” is presented in 1080p High-Definition and 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio. The video is cleaned up but retains the cinematic grain that audiences expect from a film made in the 1980s. All the majestic landscapes captured for the movie are a vision to behold thanks to the welcome format upgrade. James Horner’s extraordinary musical score sounds wonderful mixed together with all the environmental sounds and action-packed laser blasts and explosions you would expect from a sci-fi / fantasy epic.

No special features are included on the Blu-ray edition of “Krull.” I would imagine Sony wanted to keep its cast and crew commentary exclusive to the special edition DVD version they released a few years back. It would have been nice to see a “Behind-the-Scenes” featurette or even some trailers or TV spots for the film.

The movie is rated PG for violence, gore, and frightening and intense scenes. Things get gooey whenever a slayer or agent of the Beast is killed. Their blood-smeared heads split open and a slimy alien parasite squirms out. If it takes on a human form and is killed, the body deflates like a balloon as it collapses to the ground. There’s no profanity or nudity found in “Krull.”

If “Krull” is trying to tell any sort of moral story, it would be that we can accomplish anything we set our minds to. You just have to work hard to reach your goal. It also teaches that good will always triumph over evil in the end. Some will consider that idea to be old-fashioned and naïve, but I still believe.

“Krull” might take place in another galaxy, but it’s still a very human and age-old medieval tale where the hero’s journey leads to battling a vicious enemy and his minions. It just so happens that the Beast here resembles Sauron and his cronies are reminiscent of stormtroopers and Cylons. Set against the backdrop of breathtaking location shots and realistic soundstage sets, the movie is a testament to the art of filmmaking before the advent of CGI. A solid roster of actors, including Liam Neeson and Robbie Coltrane in one of their earliest roles, adds even more substance to a film that’s a welcome addition to any science fiction or fantasy enthusiast’s Blu-ray library.

"Krull" is available now on Blu-ray.

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