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Ladyhawke [DVD] 
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On the run from the dungeons of the medieval city of Aquila, thief Phillipe Gaston is helped by Etienne Navarre (Rutger Hauer), a mysterious knight who carries a precious hawk on his arm and is also pursued by the soldiers of Aquila. Two years ago, Navarre and his lover Lady Isabeau were banished from the city and placed under a spell which turns him into a wolf by night and her into a hawk by day, leaving them only a few brief moments to spend together at dawn and sunset. Now, Navarre tries to persuade Phillipe to help him and Isabeau re-enter the city and confront the evil Bishop who, out of his lust for Isabeau, cast the jealous spell which keeps the two lovers apart. Phillipe agrees, but the path to the Bishop is a heavily guarded one, and it will take great courage to follow this mission through to the end.
This lushly produced fantasy has gained a loyal following since its release in 1985, and it gave a welcome boost to the careers of Matthew Broderick, Michelle Pfeiffer and Rutger Hauer. You have to ignore the overly aggressive music score by Andrew Powell, music director of the Alan Parsons Project (critic Pauline Kael aptly dubbed it "disco-medieval") and director Richard Donner's reckless allowance of anachronistic dialogue and uninspired storytelling, but there's a certain charm to the movie's combination of romance and heroism. Broderick plays a young thief who comes to the aid of tragic lovers Isabeau (Pfeiffer), who is cursed to become a hawk every day at sunrise and Navarre (Hauer) who turns into a wolf at sunset. The curse was cast by an evil sorcerer-bishop (John Wood), and as Broderick eludes the bishop's henchmen, Navarre struggles to conquer the villain, lift the curse and be reunited with his love in human form. The tragedy of this lovers' dilemma keeps the movie going, and Broderick is well cast as a young, medieval variation of Woody Allen. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Let's be honest - how can you NOT like LADYHAWKE? It most definitely is one of the best medieval movies ever made.
Directed by Richard Donner who probably is best known for the great LETHAL WEAPON series does a fabulous job: the pacing is just right with plenty of action, while allowing enough time to develop all major characters thoroughly.
Stunningly beautiful cinematography by Vittorio Storaro - this picture was shot in Italy.
Edward Khmara wrote the story and co-wrote the screenplay. He also wrote the screenplay for ENEMY MINE and wrote the story of the TV mini series MERLIN.
Dutch actor Rutger Hauer as the black knight alone is worth seing LADYHAWKE, as he gives one of the best - if not the best - performances of his career, as does gorgeous Michelle Pfeiffer.
Matthew Broderick delivers some comic relief in one of his first starring roles as the thief Gaston.
John Wood as the malicious Bishop of Aquila and Leo McKern as Imperius were also a brilliant and most memorable additions to the generally great cast.
Arguably the movie's score was not to everyone's liking, and whereas a more classical approach presumably would have been more fitting because it is obviously more conventional, I can't help but ask, why? It's not the best of all scores, but it works quite well in the action scenes regardless.
Why LADYHAWKE didn't win the Academy Award for Best Picture is beyond me. It was nominated for two Academy Awards, Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing, but ended up winning neither.
RATING: 10 / 10
Reviewed version: 2002 20th Century Fox UK DVD
Feature running time: 116 mins. (uncut)
Rating: PG-13 (MPAA) / PG (BBFC)
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (anamorphic)
Audio: English 4.Read more ›
round to watching it on blu ray & got lost in a story that didn't interest me & I'm past halfway through the film, having fought not to switch it off & thoroughly I'm bored with it now. I haven't a clue what is going on at all. On top of that the music for me is blood 'orrible. It's like some out of date 1970s prog rock mess that sits ontop of the film like glass in a sandwich. I'm also not keen on Matthew Broderick acting almost like his Ferris Bueller role constantly acting cocky & almost breaking the fourth wall by talking aloud as if directly to us. Nope I sorry it won't get much use will the blu ray disc after this watch.
by the bishop at 'Aquila'
Captain Navare. (Rutger Hauer) becomes a wolf at night, 'Isabeau' a hawk
by day, the lovers destined by the curse never to be together as man and
The tale starts with young 'Phillipe Gastone' a thief being the first ever to
escape from the prison at the monastery in Aquila, the Bishop orders the
guards to hunt down the escapee, which eventually they do, however young
'Phillipe' is saved by 'Captain Navare' who has returned to the lands to
break he curse the Bishop has placed upon them, to do that he has to kill
the treacherous Bishop.(John Wood)
Young 'Phillipe' eventually works out that the wolf and his new companion
are one of the same, when, helping the injured Hawk by taking it to 'Imperius
for help, he see's the beautiful 'Isabeau'(Michelle Pfeifer)
To complete the quest the cursed couple need the help of 'Phillipe' (Mathew
Broderick) and indeed 'Imperius' (Leo Mckern)
The film, a love story, a fantasy adventure with swords and arrows, a pleasant
film that is family friendly in general, however I would advise caution with
younger viewers.....there are scenes of mainly moderate violence.
Good picture and Sound quality throughout this '1985' movie (121 mins)
English and French audio.....English, French and German sub-titles.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this film, has everything. Fantasy, romance, action, comedy. It's an oldie but a goldie, the actors are some of my favourite.
Never gets boring watching this.
The movie of my childhood. I order to show my child. Beautiful story, worth watching. Is one of the classics that have great story. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Customer1234
This dvd DIDN'T play! Came in ok condition but only the first 9 mins played.I contacted MM twice and they have ignored me!Published 7 months ago by MarieWH2