Rewatching the 1988 movie Willow scene-by-scene. Why? Because it’s freakin’ Willow! Time for a lot of magic fighting, 1:47:25 to 1:49:47 on the Blu-ray.
We cut from the ritual room back to outside, where Madmartigan is fighting two guys. He flips one over his shoulder as a second one runs up with a spear. He does a cool spin move with his sword to block the attack. Then there’s a quick bit with the Brownies, showing they are involved with the battle after all. They use their knives to cut a rope on a sort of medieval arrow machine (I believe this is called a hwacha, but I could be wrong). The arrows fly into a group of NockMaar, and one of them dies with the second Wilhelm scream of the movie. The Brownies cheer in triumph.
There’s a closeup of General Kael, as he says, “Now you die.” In the reverse shot, we see he’s talking to Airk. Airk charges forward only for his sword to deflect off of Kael’s shield. From this angle, we can see that Kael’s helmet leaves his ears exposed. You’d think some clever Galladoorn archer would take aim at those ears, but it never happens.
Then we’re back inside the ritual room for crazy magic fighting! Bavmorda reaches her hand into a burning lamp of some kind, which somehow didn’t get blown out with all the candles in the previous scene. She has a fireball in her hand, which she throws at Raziel. Raziel gets surrounded by flames. Bavmorda smiles, thinking she’s won, but Raziel’s non-burned hand bursts out of the flames holding the wand. The wand then shoots ice and snow at Bavmorda, all while Raziel is still hidden behind the magic fire. There’s a shot of Willow watching all this from outside the room, keeping our hero present in the scene.
Bavmorda ends up frozen in place, looking like an ice sculpture, as the fire fades from Raziel. Raziel leans forward, weary from the fight, only for all the ice to explode outward, knocking Raziel back. Raziel falls back against some candles, then collapses onto the floor, and then a big stone pillar falls on top of her. The music gets all spooky as Bavmorda approaches, while Raziel tries to telekinesis the fallen wand back into her hand. It works, as the wand glows blue, flies into her hand. Raziel reaches up and shouts magic words at Bavmorda, and Bavmorda is thrown straight up into the air. This is some painful-looking slapstick as Raziel controls Bavmorda’s path in midair. Bavmorda smacks into a wall and then spins around several times for hitting the floor. Raziel is practically manic as the does this, breaking out with laughter as she torments Bavmorda. Note that in the graphic novel adaptation, this fight includes Bavmorda bringing to life a gargoyle on the wall, only for Raziel to zap it. The GN also has a bit during this part where Sorsha fights and kills a wolf during this part.
Raziel stands up, with no info about how she got out from under the pillar. There are quick shots of an unconscious Bavmorda, Willow, and the baby. Raziel has a big ol’ grin on her face as walks over to Bavmorda’s body, wand at the ready. Bavmorda’s face is covered by part of her robe. Raziel uses the wand to uncover Bavmorda’s face. It looks like Bavmorda is dead for a moment, only for her to go all Large Marge by coming back to life and screeching at Raziel for a jump scare. It works, because Raziel gets so startled she drops the wand again.
Both women scramble on the floor, grabbing at the wand, basically playing tug-of-war with it. Several more shots of Willow watching them fight. Bavmorda and Raziel get onto their feet, each holding a part of the wand. As they both try to wrest it from the other, blue lightning shoots of out, zapping all over the room. The blue lightning is so powerful enough to destroy one of the stone pillars. Willow ducks for cover, and then his attention turns to the baby, still laying there on the altar.
Action-hero music plays as Willow runs into the room, ducking out of the path of the lighting, which causes sparks and smoke all around him. He makes it about halfway through the room when the lightning strikes a… hey, just what is this thing? It appears to be a container filled with bones, with four legs like a table. It comes to life and is a bona fide monster for this next bit. The fan wiki doesn’t say what this thing is, but it confirms that the spell that brought it to life is transmutation, temporarily animating an inanimate object. The wiki states that this spell was another one of Bavmorda’s specialties. The container chases Willow around some more pillars in the room, making hissing and growling noises. Listen carefully, and you can hear Willow say “Yikes!” as it pursues him. The skeleton hands inside the container open the lid up and down like it has a mouth.
And we’ll just leave things on that nightmarish note.
Next: Blood n’ guts.
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