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Ancient Warriors (2003)
Movie Review by The Gravedigger

Ancient Warriors (2003) This new release from MTI is an entertaining action flick starring Franco Columbu and Daniel Baldwin (the fat Baldwin).After the first ten minutes of this movie I was just thinking 'this is awful'. And this is because of the opening sequence, when a group of soldiers try to protect an ambassador from the bad guys. One of them gets killed, an older man-and Franco Columbu runs over to him, frantic, yelling 'Papa, Papa.' Well, this had me a little confused-I mean is this the fallen guy's name-or could they actually mean that this soldier is Franco's father? They look as if they're the same age! Columbu is no spring chicken! And he's not the most naturalistic actor. Then, there's Daniel Baldwin, who is always hit or miss in his performances. Good in John Carpenter's VAMPIRES, bad in this.BUT, if you can get past the first twenty-minutes or so this movie really picks up. Columbu is married to a model-looking wife, has a kind-hearted retarded daughter and he volunteers in his spare time to help at her school. When he finds out that the school property is being sold to a mining company he does some investigating-and soon finds out that one of the people in charge is the guy who killed his father! At a town festival his wife is accidently shot by a sniper-and lays in a coma. So, he calls in a group of his associates to help find out what's going on-and this is when the movie becomes very entertaining. In fact, it reminded me very much of KILL OR BE KILLED. And that's a good thing!The interaction between these characters is hilarious and the script had me chuckling at parts. In one scene, before they are to head into a mine shaft one of the guys turns to his African American associate, who is darkening his face with charcoal. He says, incredulously, 'You're black, it's night and we're going into a mine' and the guy replies, 'Meaning?'. In another scene a guy brings home cookies for Franco's daughter and Baldwin asks 'Did you bring any for me,' and the answer is 'I think you're fat enough.' Later, Baldwin gets halfway stuck trying to crawl down a hole and they call him Poo-Bear! The funniest, though, is when Franco tells him something and then walks away and Baldwin does a perfect imitation of Franco, with his thick Italian accent. I just wish some of this humor was interjected earlier into the movie.The supernatural part of this is that the bad guys are looking for a chalice that has healing properties. It was used thousands of years ago by these ancient warriors to cure illness-but they were caught in a cave-in and buried all this time. The bad guy leader, Richard Lynch (VAMPYRE, BAD DREAMS) is dying of cancer, coughing up blood, and greatly desires to live. But the spirits of the dead start interfering. These effects of the ghosts are creepy-faces staring out of rock, forming over old skulls or just walking around.ANCIENT WARRIORS is one of the better direct-to-video action/supernatural flicks out there. Hopefully they'll make a sequel with all the supporting characters.
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