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La Guerra del Ferro - Ironmaster

La Guerre du Fer / Er - Stärker als Feuer und Eisen / The Iron Master

Italy/France 1983
produced by
Luciano Martino, Carlo Maietto (executive) for Dania Film, Medusa Produzione, Imp.Ex.Ci., Les Films Jacques Leitienne
directed by Umberto Lenzi
starring Sam Pasco, George Eastman (= Luigi Montefiori), Elvire Audray, Pamela Prati (= Pamela Field), Jacques Herlin, Danilo Mattei (as Brian Redford), Benito Stefanelli, Areno D'Adderio, Giovanni Cianfriglia, Nello Pazzafini, Walter Lucchini, Nicola La Macchia, William Berger, Pietro Torrisi, Salvatore Billa, Ottaviano Dell'Acqua, Alessandro Prete
story by Luciano Martino, Alberto Cavallone, screenplay by Alberto Cavallone, Lea Martino, Dardano Sacchetti, Gabriel Rossini, music by Guido De Angelis, Maurizio De Angelis

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Yesterday, in the stone age: Evil Vuud (George Eastman) kills chieftain Iksay (Benito Stefanelli) to become chieftain himself - but the murder is witnessed by good guy Ela (Sam Pasco), who sees to it that he is expelled from his tribe to never return. But then Vuud walks into a volcano eruption - which he not only survives but he also discovers the secret of iron in the process - and with an iron sword he returns to his tribe, duels and defeats Ela and crowns himself chieftain. Ela meanwhile makes a getaway and this way evades execution gravely injured. Fortunately enough though, he runs into Isa (Elvire Audray), who takes him to her tribe led by her pacifist father Mogo (William Berger), where Ela is nursed back to health.

Meanwhile, at Ela's old tribe, Vuud is planning on attacking and enslaving all the other tribes, and he soon starts a mining operation, too, to provide his men with swords. Eventually, he even attacks Mogo's tribe and kills Mogo, and only Ela, Isa and a small crowd of loyals manage to escape.

Vuud now controls the whole valley, but he knows as long as Ela is at large his power is not total, especially since Ela has since managed to steal a couple of swords. So he decides to challenge Ela to a one-on-one duel, which is actually only a trap he has set up for Ela - but Ela has seen through Vuud's evil schemes, quickly invents bow-and-arrow, and with this kind of weapon, he and his men and women can effortlessly take care of Vuud and his men, who grossly outnumber Ela's, and in the end, Ela manages to kill Vuud in a sword duel.


Now nobody expected a thoughtful masterpiece about the stone age from a film called Ironmaster with a bodybuilder in the lead made at the height of the barbarian genre - but even having said that, Ironmaster is pretty much pure trash, and cheap trash at that. There is literally no effort made to elevate the film above its humble origins, all its sets, costumes and props spell nothing but cheapness, the direction by Umberto Lenzi is lazy even by his 1980's standards, and the cast is pretty much uniformly bad. What remains is a predilection for badly staged violence, bit players grotesquely hamming up their death scenes, and an unbelievably unspectacular look back at a time before time ... so yes, bad movie masochists like myself will find this one somehow entertaining - but unfortunately, the emphasis is on somehow here.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD