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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Adventure > Fantasy > Battles > Swords > Quests > Highlander: The Directors Cut - 30th Anniversary Edition (1986/Lionsgate DVD Set)

Highlander: The Directors Cut - 30th Anniversary Edition (1986/Lionsgate DVD Set)

Picture: B- Sound: B- Extras: B Film: B+

Director Russell Mulcahy's 1986 cult classic Highlander has landed on disc in new DVD and Blu-ray editions (we are only covering the DVD edition here) that capture the film with a new transfer and in depth extra features chronicling the making of the film. For some reason, this was a film that I never got around to watching the whole way through until I received this release where I instantly not only enjoyed the film but noted how many other big blockbusters have ripped off some of its ideas, shots, and sequences since. For instance, sword fighting training scenes amidst beautiful mountains (Batman Begins), fighting hand to hand through WWII and not being affected by gunfire (X-Men Origins: Wolverine), and even silhouette sword fights before a heavy blue background (Kill Bill), all of which goes to show the impact that this film has had on modern filmmakers.

Starring Christopher Lambert as Connor MacLeod as an immortal living in 1985 New York City, he is constantly haunted by demons from the past of his long life and must avoid getting his head chopped off by other immortals in order to keep his long life. Having falling in love in the 1800s (and lost his love due to her own mortality), fought wars, and trained with one of the best instructors of his kind Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez (Sean Connery), MacLeod must continue to stand his ground against (fellow immortal) villain known as the Victor Kruger (Clancy Brown) in the ''modern'' day with the help of an attractive police detective named Brenda Wyatt (Roxanne Hart).

Presented in standard definition with an anamorphic widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and a lossy English 5.1 Dolby Digital track, the film looks fine on DVD with the exception of a few battle scenes towards the beginning of the film that look a bit shaky (probably the new footage that was added to this directors cut). I'm interested to see the Blu-ray release of this same edition to see if some of the transfer is fixed.

Special Features include...

Director's Commentary

Interviews with Russell Mulcahy and Christopher Lambert

The Making of Highlander (feature-length documentary)

Deleted Scenes

Archival Interview with Christopher Lambert


Featuring amazing cinematography (including gorgeous rain sequences), cool low budget special effects, gorgeous locations all over the world, and top notch acting, I would suggest Highlander to any genre fan that loves sword fighting adventure films or time traveling films. While I've heard from others that the series gets progressively worse, after seeing and liking this so much I may go back and watch them all for fun.

- James Lockhart



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