Crazy Childhood: Fire and Ice
Fire and Ice review
Well, let's face it. Crap nowadays isn't getting any better, and we wacks from the past can only turn back to the past to entertain us. But, when we look back at our childhood, we think to ourselves....was it worth it? Well, that's what were gonna find out with the article I like to call....well, you know.
Fire and Ice (1983)
Directed by: Ralph Bakshi
Starring: Susan Tyrell, Maggie Roswell, William Ostrander, Stephen Mendel, Steve Sandor, Randy Norton, Sean Hannon
Before "Cool World", Ralph Bakshi's last film was in 1983, and was also his last stab at fantasy. His previous attempts were "Wizards" (which was alright) and "The Lord of the Rings" (which I never saw).
My outlook on Ralph Bakshi doing fantasy is mixed. How could someone like Ralph Bakshi, who did animated movies on street life, do fantasy movies filled with creatures and fairies? Isn't that something DISNEY would do?
Better yet, all of Ralph Bakshi's fantasy films were PG rated. How could he manage to make a family-oriented movie? That's like the creators of "The Sopranos" writing an episode of "Sesame Street".
But, you know what? I immediately forgot all that logic by the time 10 minutes past.
Out of all the fantasy films done by Bakshi (so far, I haven't seen LOTR), this is his most engaging. It has great action, great animation, great music, this movie has it all.
One great thing about this movie is how the movie takes itself seriously for a fantasy film from the 80's. Most of them were either too silly or too cheap to take seriously. "Fire and Ice" , on the other hand, knows how to keep us intrigued without having us laugh unintentionally at it's script or production values.
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Nekron (Hannon), king of Icekeep, sends a delegation to Jarol, the king of Firekeep, to request this surrender. This is really a muse to kidnap Jarol's daughter, Teegra (Roswell, best known as Maude Flanders from "The Simpsons"). But Teegra escapes, and manages to run into Larn (Norton), the last of his kind, who has been wiped out by glaciers controlled by Nekron. With the help of a mysterious warrior named Darkwolf (Sandor), Larn and Teegra must stop Nekron and his army from ruling the world.
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT?
The animation is awesome. While it IS rotoscoping (tracing over live-action), Bakshi takes advantage of this. Seeing how this movie is more along the lines of a "Frank Franzetta" picture, where everything looks rotoscoped to begin with, this method definately works.
The music is what really triumphs. The score is done by William Kraft. Every note he conducts gave me goosebumps. When I saw a character from the movie sneaking around in the fog, Kraft keeps it smooth and sultry. When an action scene occurs, he brings it up loud and conquering. This guy should conduct more movies (action orientated ones, at least.).
WHAT'S BAD ABOUT IT?
The violence. It wasn't R-rated violence, but I felt a bit dirty watching it. While it IS a Ralph Bakshi film, that's still no excuse. When I watch a PG film, I clearly expect PG material. It's nothing you can't handle, but it's surely something your kids can't handle. The film also contains some monsters and scary images that kids under 11 definately can't see yet. Oh, well.
"Fire and Ice" is an engaging and well-animated adventure for anyone with a little fantasy or action in them. The film certainly doesn't wanna screw around with silly dialogue or cheap production values. It successfully takes itself seriously (considering that it's written by two Marvel Comics writers, who you'd think would write something along the lines of "Red Sonja"). Despite it's slightly over-the-top violence, it's worth a look.
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