triumphing over the TZ disaster

in the allegorical film art

of Don Coscarelli


by Gary W. Wright


        It was difficult enough to be a Good and determined but short, skinny, weak, sickly, moody, brooding, painfully self conscious, angry, depressed, unhappy, acne and brace-faced and always sullen and achingly horny sadolescent J.D. Jedi Knight before late July of 1982, but it became even more difficult after that fatal and fateful day that a helicopter crash killed actor/writer/director Vic Morrow and illegally hired and employed child extras Renee Chen and Myca Le around 2:20 am in the early morning of July 23, 1982 on the George Folsey jr. produced John Landis set of the twilit, allegorical, Kathleen Kennedy associate produced, Frank Marshall produced and Landis and Steven Spielberg executive produced Landis, Spielberg, Joe Dante and George Miller docufeature film TWILIGHT ZONE: THE MOVIE [1983].  For within days of the TZ disaster, it was discovered that Folsey jr., Kennedy and Marshall had helped Landis track down and illegally use Chen and Le after hours and near dangerous explosives and hovering helicopters on that fateful and fatal night, making it clear that the TZ disaster was not the entirely surprising and unfortunate mishap it had appeared to be at the outset.  ?!And what the hell did Spielberg know about the use of Chen and Le near dangerous explosives and hovering helicopters after hours, given that he was man behind and the overall commander of TWILIGHT ZONE: THE MOVIE?!

        Just as outraging and shocking was the unexpected confirmation after the TZ disaster from the head J.D. Jedi himself, George Lucas jr., that despite the revelation that the illegal actions of Kennedy and Marshall had contributed to the deaths of Chen, Le and Morrow in the TZ disaster, he would still honour a commitment made before the fatal fiasco to work as executive producer with Kennedy and Marshall as producers on the twilit, allegorical, computer generated imagery [CGI] enhanced, and Ozian themed Spielberg indie docufeature film INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM [1984], which was a sequel to the eerily and ominously twilit, allegorical, Ozian themed, Lucas executive produced, Marshall produced and implicitly William Friedkin roasting Spielberg indie docufeature film RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK [1981].  An unexpected, shocking, outraging and disappointing confirmation, indeed, for Lucas had primly preached for years that the Good Force of law and order, peace and politesse, health and harmony, morality and spirituality must be with you always in order to succeed in this life and the next in the first two implicitly and ironically Spielberg roasting installments of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy, the allegorical, CGI enhanced and Ozian themed Lucas indie docufeature film STAR WARS EPISODE IV: A NEW HOPE [1977], and the eerily and presciently twilit, allegorical, CGI enhanced, Ozian themed and Lucas executive produced Irvin Kershner indie docufeature film STAR WARS EPISODE V: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK [1980].

        Not surprisingly, young J.D. Jedi like my peerless peers and myself at the time hit the roof in insensate and incoherent fury at this incensing nonsense, despondently and angrily convinced that Lucas had revealed himself to be Lord Stinkious, Darkest of the insidious and duplicitous Dark Lords, a cruel and callous Sith Lord indifferent to human life and only interested in amassing beastly CGI enhanced blockbuster profits!  The fact that Lucas did not mention the TZ disaster at the time and to this day only strengthened that conviction.  The fact that working with Lucas on an Indy sequel allowed Kennedy, Marshall and Spielberg to flee to Elstree Studios in England to begin pre-production work on INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM and thus avoid any more revealing and incriminating interviews with the police and press regarding the TZ disaster, and stressful time on the witness stand at the TZ trial, also affirmed the conviction of youthful Jedi that Lucas was now indeed insidious Lord Stinkious.

This Dark conviction became certain in October of ’82 when a double bill of STAR WARS EPISODE IV: A NEW HOPE and STAR WARS EPISODE V: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK arrived in the Temple Theatre preceded by a trailer for the once eagerly awaited trimax of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy that revealed that the title of the twilit, allegorical, CGI enhanced, Ozian themed, Lucas executive produced and implicitly Spielberg roasting Richard Marquand indie docufeature film was STAR WARS EPISODE VI: REVENGE OF THE JEDI [1983], despite the fact that all true J.D. Jedi knew that Jedi Knights used their powerful Force for defense, never for attack or revenge.  Thus, by early October of ’82 and to the shocked, confused, infuriated, embittered, and despondent dismay and disappointment of full throttle young J.D. Jedi Knights in Canada, the United States and around the world, the daylit Skyrocking dream had been brutally and violently replaced by a twilit Skyfalling twilightmare and the dread allegorical Zone Wars it ignited, an infuriating and depressing cinematic nightmare that has never been swept away by another inspiring cinematic dream to this day, though not for want of determined and desperate cinematic striving, particularly from Luc Besson, James Cameron, and Sir Peter Jackson.  Desperate and determined attempts to sweep away the TZ disaster and the dread allegorical Zone Wars it set off that began soon after July 23, 1982, when a fearless, unforgettable, commanding and courageous film arrived in the Temple Theatre on August 22, 1982 in the fantastic form of the eerily and presciently twilit and hopefully daylit, allegorical and Ozian themed Don Coscarelli jr. indie docufeature film THE BEASTMASTER [1982].


“We will fight.”


Curiously, the film began at spooky night with a gate rising to admit a twilit trio of robed and hooded men into a maze of unpaved lanes in a small city.  Soon they left the labyrinth and found themselves in a small square lit by torches burning in pillars.  On the other side of the square was a small pyramid with a passageway in the middle flanked by stairways that led to the top of the pyramid, evoking a similar small step temple devoted to the weird worship of mysterious Ullatec seen when Dennis aka Den-played by John Candy-arrived in the fantasy world of Neverwhere after a bewildering journey through time and space just in time to prevent the exuberantly Evil, buxom and implicitly Jeanne Moreau linked Queen-played by Marilyn Lightstone-from offering the equally buxom and bound and tied fellow Earth space/time traveller Katherine Wells-played by Jackie Burroughs-as a living sacrifice to Ullatec in a pool in front of the temple at the beginning of “Den”, the second episode, inspired by the allegorical Richard Corben narrative artwork Neverwhere [1978], of the eerily and presciently twilit and allegorical Gerald Potterton animated feature film HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE [1981]. 

The twilit trio crossed the square and entered the dark depths of the middle passage of the pyramid, which led to a room deep inside where another twilit trio, this one a twilit trio of statuesque but hideous faced witches-played by Janet DeMay, Janet Jones and Chrissy Kellog, respectively-straight out of the allegorical narrative art of Grandmaster Corben, particularly the perennially appearing, narrating, equally buxom and hideous Mag the Hag, and the allegorical William Shakespeare play MACBETH [1604], writhed around a boiling and bubbling cauldron.  Curiously, these three weird witches also evoked the three blind and equally prophetic Stygian witches-played by Freda Jackson, Anna Manahan and Flora Robson, respectively-who were met in the eerily twilit, allegorical and implicitly Terry Gilliam toasting and Spielberg and David Lynch roasting Desmond Davis docufeature film CLASH OF THE TITANS [1981], which implicitly linked Gilliam to perseverant Perseus-played by Harry Hamlin.

After signalling to his companions to wait outside the room, the middle of the male trio strode up to the witches in the room and pulled back his hood to reveal a sinister, arch eyebrowed and hook nosed countenance, a forbidding face that was addressed by the witches as Maax, the implicitly Wicked Warlock of the West linked High Priest of the city of Arok-played by Rip Torn.  Fittingly, given that the three witches evoked the three witches met at the beginning of MACBETH, but to the dismay of Maax, the weird witches revealed that they could see the future in the bubbling broth of the cauldron, a prophesied future that saw Maax defeated and killed by the “unborn” son of someone called King Zed and that recalled the prophecy that an ancestor of the legendary Taarak the Defender-played by August Schellenberg-would arrive to defeat the barbarian hordes that were assaulting the peaceful citizens of a city on another planet in “Taarna”, the last episode of HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE.  This dire prophecy implicitly linked “Mad” Maax to Potterton, and caused him to scornfully reply that he would immediately kill this “unborn” son before this son killed him, a baneful boast that was heard by King Zed.  For at that moment, the king-played by Rod Loomis-burst into the room with several guards, including sturdy Seth-played by John Amos-all with drawn swords.  Taking “Mad” Maax captive, King Zed banished the Evil High Priest of Ar on horseback to the desolate outlands with the cursed barbarian Juns. 

However, as he was being ridden out of the city of Arok under guard, “Mad” Maax made Evil eye contact with one of the three Weird witches met earlier walking into the city leading a cow.  This witch understood the message Maax was silently transmitting to her, for she led the cow into the city of Arok and, stealthily sneaking into the bedchamber of King Zed and his Jeanne Moreau resembling and implicitly linked Queen-played by Vanna Bonta-used her weird witchy power to paralyze the sleeping couple and transfer their unborn son from the stomach of the pregnant queen to the stomach of the cow and then flee the city.

        Significantly, outside Arok, the weird witch stopped to rest in a clearing in a forest.  Building a fire, she cut the unborn boy-played by the fittingly surnamed Blake Bolger and also by Derek Elmore-from the stomach of the cow and carried it back to the fire.  However, instead of throwing the babe into the fire and cackling with malevolent delight as it burned, the witch branded Dar’s sinister left hand with a symbol representing the small step pyramid seen in Arok-!the sinister sign of Ar!-a brand on the left hand of the boy that evoked the red tattoo of Taarak the Defender on the left side of the neck of his summoned female ancestor, Taarna the avenging Defender, who alas arrived too late to save the citizens of the beseiged city in “Taarna”, to reaffirm the implicit interest in HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE in THE BEASTMASTER.  The weird witch then raised a knife and prepared to kill the boy.  Luckily for young Dar, a humble but strong, Good and Harvey Kurtzman resembling farmer named Gar-his name eerily and presciently anticipating the arrival of Gardevil, and played by Ben Hammer-happened on the scene and killed the implicitly Wicked Witch of the East linked witch with his three bladed boomerang kapir throwing knife and his trusty samurai sword, thus saving the boy and ending the prologue of the film. 

Curiously, the implicitly Wicked Witch of the East linked weird witch exploded and disappeared when Gar tossed her into the fire, leaving only her taunting cackle before that disappeared, too.  Just as curiously, the exact same thing happened when the implicitly Stanley Kubrick and Scarecrow linked Conan the Cimmerian-a hero who was also prophesied to do great things, and played by Arnold Schwarzenegger-tossed an equally weird and implicitly Wicked Witch of the East linked werewitch-played by Cassandra Gava-into a fire at the beginning of the eerily and presciently twilit, allegorical, Ozian themed and implicitly Lord Stinkious roasting John Milius indie docufeature artbuster CONAN THE BARBARIAN [1982], released only three months before THE BEASTMASTER, in one of the many similarities between the two films.

Gar then took the babe, as ironically bald as one of the lesser priests of Ar, back to his small village of Emir, where the lad was greeted warmly by the villagers and, in time, dubbed “Dar”, whose name was an anagram of the Friedkin resembling and implicitly linked Ard-played by Martin Lavut-a mischievous and implicitly homosexual “…supreme leader of the revolution and next ruler of the world” who vied with the Queen for possession of the gleefully gloating, insidious, sentient, verbose, bewitching, controlling and carnol ball of sickly green and implicitly Wicked Warlock of the West linked Evil called the Loc-Nar-that linked all of the episodes of HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE together, and was played by Percy Rodrigues-in order to rule Neverwhere in “Den”.  Curiously, the name of Dar also evoked and was perhaps partly inspired by the death defying American stuntman Dar Robinson, who became the first person to successfully leap off the CN Tower in downtown Toronto for the allegorical Peter Carter indie docufeature film HIGHPOINT [1982]. 

Significantly, when he was ten years old, Dar-played by Billy Jayne-saved Gar with psychic powers he suddenly discovered he had by using them to face down and master a blockbuster bear beast after the brutal beast mauled a fellow villager named Tiis-played by Paul Reynolds-to death.  And so the legend of the Beastmaster was born, and in time Dar grew up to be a tall, muscular, handsome, blonde, Cameron anticipating, and Mark Hamill resembling young man-played by the Vancouver born and raised Marc Singer, a fitting background given the implicit link of Dar to Dar Robinson on one level.  Alas, some ten years after Dar discovered that he was the Beastmaster, the Wicked “Mad” Maax showed up at Emir in the middle of Act One with a group of brutal, violent and Hun evoking Jun barbarians commanded by a Jun leader-played by Tony Eppers-a big man who, with his cape and horned and masked helmet, looked like a cross between David Prowse’s implicitly Akira Kurosawa linked Darth Vader in the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy and Kjell Nilsson’s implicitly Lord Stinkious linked Lord Humungous in the eerily and presciently twilit, allegorical, Ozian themed and implicitly Spielberg and Stinkious roasting Miller indie docufeature film THE ROAD WARRIOR [1982], also released like CONAN THE BARBARIAN only months before the release of THE BEASTMASTER, a link to that film increased by the fact that Gar’s boomerang kapir throwing knife evoked the razor sharp boomerang of the Feral Kid-played by Emil Minty-in THE ROAD WARRIOR, and by the beautiful and remote desert locations in each film, which also evoked the desertscapes of “Den” in HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE.  And, to the horror of Dar, the Jun leader and his merciless barbarian Juns proceeded to attack and burn down the village and slaughter its inhabitants, evoking the Wicked Loc-Nar controlled barbarian horde and their implicitly Spielberg linked leader-played by Vlasta Vrana-that attacked and slaughtered the inhabitants of that city on another world at the beginning of the “Taarna” episode that ended HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE. 

        Ironically, this attack on the village of Dar evoked the similar attack on the village of the boy Conan-played by Jorge Sanz-by barbarians led by the insidious and implicitly Lord Stinkious and Wicked Warlock of the West linked Thulsa Doom-played by James E. Jones, who was the electronically modified voice of Darth Vader, Lord of the Sith, in the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy, to affirm the implicit link of Doom to Lucas-that kicked off CONAN THE BARBARIAN, thus bookending the TZ disaster between two very similar and vengeful fantasy films.  An ironic link, indeed, for while CONAN THE BARBARIAN implicitly roasted Stinkious before he confused and enraged fans by announcing that he was going to work with Kennedy, Marshall and Spielberg on INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM, THE BEASTMASTER implicitly toasted Stinkious after he confused and enraged J.D. Jedi fans with that abysmal announcement. 

Significantly, after surviving the attack with the help of his Toto evoking dog Bodo to affirm the implicit Ozian theme of the film, an Ozian theme that evoked the Ozian theme of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy to reaffirm the implicit link to Dar to Stinkious, Dar ended Act One by setting fire to Emir and the corpses of its villagers, including that of Gar, reminding us that Conan’s father-played by William Smith-also died in the attack on the Cimmerian village at the beginning of CONAN THE BARBARIAN.  Dar then resignedly kicked off Act Two by setting out from the burning ruins of Emir to avenge the deaths of Gar, Bodo and the rest of the people of the village with the help of Gar’s kapir throwing knife and his sword, an unusually long and virile samurai sword that reminded us that the Good and lightsaber wielding J.D. Jedi Knights of the Ozian themed STAR WARS Classic Trilogy were inspired in part by the samurai knights of the film art of Kurosawa, an inspiration for Stinkious.  Thus, the implication was that Dar was linked to Stinky and the Scarecrow, an implication affirmed by the resemblance of Dar to Hamill.  Another ironic implication, given that the main theme of THE BEASTMASTER by Lee Holdridge evoked that of the allegorical and implicitly Lord Stinkious roasting telefilm series BATTLESTAR GALACTICA [1978-80].

Curiously, as he left the smoking remains of his violated village, Dar found a great, powerful and airy eagle silently waiting for him high on one of the village’s posts.  The implicit link of this great, powerful and airy eagle named Sharak to the great, powerful and Air linked Great Oz reaffirmed the implicit link of Dar to Stinkious and the Earthy Scarecrow, reminding us again of the Ozian theme and Skywalking spirit of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy.  Significantly, Dar found to his humbled surprise that his psychic link allowed him to see through the eyes of the Airy eagle, an Airy point of view [POV] as the magnificent and majestic bird soared and screeched through the skies that evoked the equally soaring and screeching flight of the flying mount of Taarna the avenging Defender in “Taarna”, the last episode of HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE. 

However, and alas, this soaring POV was not enough to prevent Dar from falling into some quicksand, a temporarily frozen state that implicitly linked the two mischievous and avaricious ferrets that rescued him to the frozen by Water Tin Man before they were laughingly dubbed Kodo and Podo by Dar in memory of the Toto evoking Bodo.  Soon after, the Great Eagle, the Tinny ferrets and the handsome, Earthy and implicitly Scarecrow linked Dar teamed up to prevent a group of barbarian Jun thugs from torturing to death a Fiery black tiger-!actually a tiger painted black!-an implicitly Cowardly Lion linked beast that was as faithful and indomitable as the implicitly Cowardly Lion linked Wookie, Chewbacca-played by Peter Mayhew-in the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy, and the implicitly Toto linked dog of the implicitly David Cronenberg linked “Mad” Max Rockatansky-played by Mel Gibson-in THE ROAD WARRIOR and that was promptly dubbed Ruh by the fearless Beastmaster when it completed the healing, harmonizing and elemental fantastic Ozian foursome.

        Significantly, soon after completing their group, the five implicit and healing Ozian companions met the eternally beautiful, fearless, feisty, spunky and implicitly Dorothy linked Princess Kiri-who also evoked Carrie Fisher’s implicitly Dorothy linked Princess Leia Organna of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy, and was played by Tanya Roberts-who turned out to be enslaved to “Mad” Maax.  Strangely, after revealing that fact and bewitching Dar with her beauty-so much so that he forced a decidedly non-PC kiss on her, before Kiri casually tossed Dar on the ground-she then returned to her life as a slave for “Mad” Maax in Arok.  Causing the smitten and psychic Darzan and his elemental Ozian companions to follow her back to the city of Arok to liberate her, thus ending Act Two.

        Strangely, Act Three began with Dar and his elemental Ozian companions coming across a settlement of eerie and flying monkey evoking and implicitly linked bat people and their leader-played by Daniel Zormeier-who were so impressed by Sharak that they allowed Dar and his pals to leave alive.  A good thing, for a male human head that Dar found floating in one of their bubbling cauldrons implied that he and his companions would have also wound up in pieces as well, and was another eerie premonition of the upcoming decapitation of poor Morrow in another pool of water.  Leaving the eerie and twilit head luvin’ bat people, Dar, Sharak, Ruh, Kodo and Podo arrived in Arok just in time to see to their shocked horror a wailing boy-played by Al Smithee-tossed by the Wicked “Mad” Maax into a blazing pit on top of the small step pyramid seen in the prologue of the film, an Evil sacrifice to Ar that was aided by the red robed lower priests and the two remaining weird witches of the High Priest.  Significantly, this sacrifice evoked the sight and sound of the Evil Queen sacrificing Katherine Wells to mysterious Ullatec at the small step temple that Den found himself standing outside when he arrived in Neverwhere at the beginning of “Den”.  This Evil child sacrifice also evoked the Evil sacrifice of a young woman-played by Leslie Foldvary-to Set the snake god by the implicitly Walter Murch linked Rexor, High Priest of Set-played by Ben Davidson-at the first Temple of Doom encountered in CONAN THE BARBARIAN, before Conan’s arrival at Thulsa’s equally towering Temple of Doom at the Mountain of Power in that film. 

Alas, while too late to stop this insidious child sacrifice and save this Le evoking boy, Dar used his psychic link with Sharak to compel the great and powerful eagle to swoop down from the Airy heights and catch the next child sacrifice of “Mad” Maax, a Chen evoking girl-played by Kim Tabet-in its powerful beak and fly away with the girl after she was also tossed into the flaming pit by the Wicked High Priest of Ar high atop the twisted Temple of Doom.  Soon after returning the child to her parents, Dar left the city, met up with Seth and his younger Munchkin brother Tal-played by Joshua Milrad-in the outlands, and the two travellers combined with Dar to rescue Kiri, bringing Act Three to a happy conclusion.  And a happy conclusion that evoked HEAVY METAL: THE MOVIE again, as Dar, Kiri and Tal set forth to sneak into Arok and its Temple of Doom, while Seth set off to round up support and promised to meet the twilit trio at the valley of Tarn, evoking Taarna the avenging Defender in “Taarna”.

Then, over the course of Acts Four and Five, dauntless Dar and his four Ozian companions teamed up and, after numerous narrow escapes, desperate battles and calamitous kung fu kicks, rescued Kiri again before she was also sacrificed along with King Zed by the Wicked “Mad” Maax, his lower priests, and the last weird witch in broad daylight high atop the Temple of Ar-reminding us that Ard also tried to sacrifice Katherine at the step temple of Ullatec before she was rescued again by Den at the end of “Den”, reaffirming the implicit link of the Wicked “Mad” Maax to Potterton-before Dar then killed the priests, fulfilled the prophecy by killing “Mad” Maax, and then killed the last weird witch, like he was a fused embodiment of Den and Taarna.  Afterwards, with the help of the creepy and all consuming bat people and their leader, Dar, Kiri, Seth, Tal and the people of Arok defeated and killed the Jun leader and his Hun Jun barbarian hordes in a brutal nighttime battle that ended the film, a final battle that included setting fire to a tar filled moat that surrounded the city of Arok, setting off a huge explosion that evoked the explosion that brought down the helicopter in the TZ disaster and the even larger explosion that destroyed the bitterly contested and implicitly Old Hollywood linked oil refinery in the post-apocalyptic desert wastelands in THE ROAD WARRIOR, in order to bring Ozian health and harmony back to the world.  Thus, Coscarelli implied his hope that Stinkious would triumph over Potterton and also bring elemental Ozian health and harmony back to audiences, film art, film artists and the Temple Theatre with the trimax of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy.  Indeed, the fact that the truly fantastic film fittingly ended in cheery daylight with Dar and Kiri kissing passionately-a creepy kiss, given that Tal had revealed that Kiri was his cousin, making her the cousin of Dar as well and, hence, both of them kissing cousins-high atop a butte in a stunning desertscape in the Simi Valley, California location of the shoot north of Los Angeles that evoked the stunning desertscapes of Tatooine in the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy to reaffirm, in the end, the hopeful Stinkious toasting intent of THE BEASTMASTER.

        Significantly, Coscarelli’s implied intent was not only not to be, it was ignored by outraged young audience members, particularly young J.D. Jedi teenaged boys around the world like myself, when THE BEASTMASTER showed up in the Fall of ’82 on either First Choice or Superchannel or both, the first cable tv channels in Canada, after the fearless film bombed in the theatres.  For in a classic case of audiences transforming the meaning of a film to suit their own allegorical purposes, furious young male and female fans gave the vengeful film a new implicit intent, transforming themselves in their imaginations into Dar and Kiri and turning their dual triumph over the child sacrificing Wicked “Mad” Maax and his weird witches, and the Jun leader and his hordes of brutal Jun barbarians, into an implicit triumph of young male and female viewers over the child sacrificing Wicked “Mad” Marshall and his weird witch of a fellow producer and luver Kennedy, and over John Landis and his brutal film crew on the set of his episode of TWILIGHT ZONE: THE MOVIE.  Particularly outraged Canadian adolescent male audience members like the poor ol’ Greater Vancouver Area [GVA] residing Gardevil, given that Singer was born and raised in Vancouver.  In fact, THE BEASTMASTER inspired furious fans around the world to rise up in the same grim and furious determination of Dar, Gar, Kodo, Podo, Ruh, Sharak, Kiri, Tal and Seth and launch an indignant letter campaign that led to Stinky changing the name of the trimax of the STAR WARS Classic Trilogy to STAR WARS EPISODE VI: RETURN OF THE JEDI shortly before the release of that film.

        Alas for outraged young fans and for Coscarelli, STAR WARS EPISODE VI: RETURN OF THE JEDI did not sweep away the disastrous and fatal twilight, end the dread allegorical Zone Wars and return daylit peace, health and harmony back to audiences, film art, film artists and the Temple Theatre after its release.  Instead, the feckless filmmercial and its intergalactic Ewok teddy bears outraged young fans as much as the TZ disaster, convincing them that Stinky had indeed transformed into Lord Stinkious, the ultimate insidious Sith Lord, a conviction reaffirmed by the even more dismal, disastrous and incoherent INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM.  Furious fans who were grimly pleased when Coscarelli teamed up again with Hammer for another gruelling location shoot for the twilit and allegorical indie docufeature film SURVIVAL QUEST [1988], released on September 9, 1988.


“The only thing holding you back

is fear.”


        For in the triumph of a group of ordinary indie people on a holistic and peaceful wilderness survival trek over a rival group of violent, unstable and war obsessed wilderness survival trekkers known as the Blue Legion who were implicitly linked to the bigger film artists of the dread allegorical Zone Wars, Coscarelli implied his hope that audiences and indie film artists like himself would ultimately triumph over the major TZ disaster obsessed film artists who were battling away in the Zone Wars and lead film art back to a healthy, harmonious, daylit and Zone War free neo eon of CGI enhanced film art.  Indeed, the implicit allegorical intent of SURVIVAL QUEST was affirmed by the fact that the gung ho and violent Blue Legion was led by the Cameron resembling and implicitly linked Jake Cannon-played by Mark Ralston, who was openly linked to Cameron via his character Private Drake in the twilit, allegorical, CGI enhanced, Ozian themed and implicitly Dante and Spielberg roasting Cameron indie docufeature Zonebuster ALIENS [1986].

        In addition, Hank Chambers-played by Lance Henriksen-the leader of the peaceful trekkers and an adoptive child like Dar, also affirmed the film’s implicit Cameron addressing intent on one level.  For Henriksen played Bishop the helpful, trustworthy and implicitly Tin Man linked android in ALIENS, police Chief Steven “Steve” Kimbrough in the twilit, allegorical and implicitly Sir Ridley Scott addressing Cameron indie docufeature film PIRANHA II: THE SPAWNING [1982], and Los Angeles Police Department Detective Hal Vukovich in the twilit, allegorical, CGI enhanced, Ozian themed and implicitly Lynch and Stinkious roasting Cameron indie docufeature Zonebuster THE TERMINATOR [1984].  Last but not least, the grimly amusing sight and sound of the implicitly Lord Stinkious linked Blue Legionnaire Checker-played by Ken Daly-being shot dead late in the film by the implicitly Spielberg linked fellow Blue Legionnaire Raider-played by the fittingly Christian named Steve Antin-also implied that Coscarelli believed that Stinky had been betrayed by Spielberg. 

Significantly, this implicit interest in roasting Cameron soon returned when Sylvio Tabet, the co-producer and co-executive producer of THE BEASTMASTER, donned the co-writer/director/producer hats to create the daylit, allegorical, Ozian themed and implicitly Lord Stinkious toasting indie docufeature film BEASTMASTER II: THROUGH THE PORTAL OF TIME [1991], released on June 8, 1991.


“Yo, Darth Vader!

What is this, some sort of movie set?”


        Curiously, after narrowly escaping execution, an execution ordered by the insidious and implicitly Cameron linked Evil warlord Arklon-played by Wings Hauser-and carried out by the equally insidious Inquisitor-his priestly robes evoking “Mad” Maax, his features resembling and anticipating Quentin Tarantino, and played by Charles Hyman-in another deadly Temple of Doom with the help of a new Fiery and implicitly Cowardly Lion linked regular tiger again named Ruh, a new Airy and implicitly Great Oz linked eagle again named Sharak, and two new Watery and implicitly Tin Man linked ferrets again named Kodo and Podo, the implicitly Lord Stinkious and Scarecrow linked Dar-played again by Singer-followed Lord Arklon and his implicitly Kathryn Bigelow and Wicked Witch of the West linked witch “advisor” Lyranna-played by Sarah Douglas-through a space/time portal from his alternate Earth to then contemporary Los Angeles in our alternate Earth. 

Here Dar teamed up with the Kiri resembling and implicitly Sofia Carmina [SCC] Coppola and Dorothy linked Jackie Trent-played by Kari Wuhrer-and, with the help of a horseless carriage, relentless rock and roll and the delightfully doddering Admiral Binns-played by Larry Dobkin-triumphed over the dastardly duo of Arklon and Lyranna before they destroyed the Earth with a literal blockbuster bomb in the form of a dread neutron detonator, in the end, implying the hope of Tabet that Stinky would return to the Temple Theatre with a feature film that would defeat Bigelow and Cameron and kick off a neo eon of CGI enhanced film art in the Nineties.   That safely done, Dar left Kodo and Podo with Jackie on her Earth before using Arklon’s handy magic key to travel with Ruh and Sharak through the space/time portal back to his alternate Earth to the fittingly hard rockin’ sounds of the daylit, allegorical and Bill Wray written Wray tune “I Will Be Your Hero” [1991].

        Just as curiously, after the implicitly Bigelow and Wicked Witch of the West linked Lyranna was defeated in BEASTMASTER II: THROUGH THE PORTAL OF TIME, the implicitly Bigelow and Glinda the Good linked Morganna-played by Lesley-Anne Down-then went on to help the implicitly Lord Stinkious and Scarecrow linked Dar-played again by Singer-when executive producer Tabet and Gabrielle Beaumont wrapped up the Beastmaster Trilogy with the tepid, tragicomic, daylit, allegorical and Ozian themed indie docufeature telefilm BEASTMASTER III: THE EYE OF BRAXUS [1996], a telefilm that was fittingly released on tv on May 24, 1996 and a trimax that was just as fittingly disappointing as STAR WARS EPISODE VI: RETURN OF THE JEDI given the implicit link of Dar to Lord Stinkious. 


“My friends call me Dar,

but you can call me…

the Beastmaster.”


Curiously, the same ol’ indomitable and psychic Darzan was now armed with a new ferret bladed and eagle and lion hilted sword and aided by a Fiery new and implicitly Cowardly Lion linked lion again named Ruh, an Airy new and implicitly Great Oz linked eagle again named Sharak, and a Watery new and implicitly Tin Man linked pair of ferrets again named Kodo and Podo.  Together, they teamed up with Morganna and a new Seth-played by Tony Todd-the feisty, fearless, beautiful, blonde and implicitly Dorothy linked warrioress Shada-played by Sandra Hess-the implicitly Tim Burton linked tumbler Bey-played by Keith Coulouris-and the sympathetic Korum-played by the fittingly surnamed David G. Wright-to triumph over the Evil and implicitly Francis Coppola and Wicked Warlock of the West linked Lord Agon-played by David Warner-and his ancient Greek evoking Crimson Warrior soldiers in order to save an older King Tal-played by Casper Van Dien-and his people of the city of Arok.  Alas, the tawdry trimatic film came across as the puerile pilot for a telefilm series, making it also fitting that the daylit, allegorical and Tabet co-executive produced indie docufeature telefilm series BEASTMASTER [1999-2002] which saw Singer return as the doughty Dartanus and the director of the daylit and allegorical Season Two indie docufeature telefilm “Destiny” [2001], and Daniel Goddard play a younger Dar, did indeed spring like a phoenix from the awful ashes of BEASTMASTER III: THE EYE OF BRAXUS.

        Alas for Coscarelli and everyone else, SURVIVAL QUEST and THE BEASTMASTER did not end the dread allegorical Zone Wars and usher in a daylit neo eon of CGI enhanced film art.  In fact, the Zone Wars raged to this day, no doubt due to the fact that Folsey jr., Kennedy, Landis, Lord Stinkious, Marshall and Spielberg were all still alive and creating film “art” to this day.  Leading Zack Snyder and company to eventually fire their own Zone War salvo and recreate THE BEASTMASTER in the film’s twenty-fourth anniversary year in the equally masterful, twilit, allegorical and CGI enhanced animaction film 300 [2006], a film released on December 9, 2006 that was inspired by the twilit and allegorical Frolickin’ Frank Miller narrative artwork 300 [1999].


“The world will never know

you existed at all.”


        Indeed, the sight and sound of a bald, young and implicitly Lord Stinkious linked Prince Leonidas of Sparta-played by Eli Snyder-killing a pursuing and blockbuster CGI wolf beast in a flashback early in the film evoked the sight and sound of the young Dar facing down and mastering the blockbuster bear beast with his psychic powers at the beginning of THE BEASTMASTER, implicitly affirming that THE BEASTMASTER inspired 300 and affirming the implicit link of Prince Leonidas to Lord Stinkious.  In fact, the shaven head of Prince Leonidas also affirmed his implicit link to Lord Stinkious, reminding us of the strange and shaven headed denizens of the subterranean world of the allegorical and implicitly Stanley Kubrick roasting Lord Stinkious indie docufeature film THX 1138 [1971]. 

The sight and sound of the older King Leonidas-played by Gerard Butler-leading his fellow Spartans, their Spartan helmets and armour evoking the ancient Greek evoking helmets of the Crimson Warriors in BEASTMASTER III: THE EYE OF BRAXUS, in an epic CGI enhanced battle against the tall, commanding and implicitly Cameron linked Xerxes, divine Emperor of the Persian Empire-a fusion of the Wicked “Mad” Maax and the barbarian Jun leader and played by Rodrigo Santoro-and his vast imperial army at the end of 300 reaffirmed that the film was a remake of THE BEASTMASTER.  For the brutal and bloody battle evoked the equally brutal and less bloody battle with the Wicked “Mad” Maax and his priests of Ar at the twisted Temple of Doom in Arok, and then the brutal and explosive battle with the Jun leader and his barbarian Hun Juns at the end of THE BEASTMASTER.

        Significantly, as King Leonidas and his fearless Spartan Immortals stopped Xerxes and his massive army but died in the process, in the end, Snyder implied that he shared the general opinion that destroyed themselves did Lord Stinkious and his insidiously loyal followers at Industrial Light and Magic [ILM], Lucasfilm and Skywalker/THX Sound implicitly trying to topple King O’ The World Cameron and his Zonebusting film art with the then recently completed STAR WARS Tragic Trilogy.  Leaving still trapped in the Twilight Zone audiences, film art, film artists and the Temple Theatre and in need dire of a real legendary, liberating and implicitly Scarecrow linked hero to stride out of the lonely and forbidding desert with an unusually long and sturdy sword and cunning kapir, a new Airy and implicitly Great Oz linked eagle, two new and implicitly Water and Tin Man linked ferrets, and a new Fiery and implicitly Cowardly Lion linked big cat to fulfill a creepy prophecy and triumph over Folsey jr., Kennedy, Landis, Lord Stinkious, Marshall and Spielberg, the TZ disaster and the dread allegorica Zone Wars at last in the healing and harmonizing elemental Ozian end, kicking off a daylit neo eon of CGI enhanced film art, a prophesied, indomitable and fearless hero destined to be called…the Zonemaster.




Miller, Frank.  300.  Milwaukie, OR: Dark Horse Comics, 1999.