Retroplex Cinema: Masters Of The Universe (1987)
The film is heavily influenced by Star Wars and was even called "the Star Wars Of The 80's" by one critic. The movie is anything but Star Wars, but it's influences are well seen throughout. The movie had a relatively small budget for such a big undertaking of only $22 Million because as director Gary Goddard said himself said, the studio kinda balked at spending too much on a comic book movie back then. Who knew that twenty years later comic book movies would rule Hollywood.
The remaining Eternian forces are scattered and outnumbered. One of Skeletor's patrols is attacked by Eternia's greatest warrior and Skeletor's archenemy, He-Man, veteran soldier Man-At-Arms and his daughter Teela. He-Man rescues a Thenorian inventor/locksmith named Gwildor, who reveals to his rescuers his newest invention: a "Cosmic Key" that can open a portal to any location in time and space. Skeletor stole the Key from him and used it to get into Castle Grayskull, but Gwildor still possesses the prototype. When his home is attacked by Skeletor's forces, Gwildor leads He-Man and his friends into a secret passageway leading directly to Grayskull.
Kevin, an aspiring musician, mistakes the object for a Japanese synthesizer and takes it to a friend at a local music store to get a second opinion, leaving Julie in their high school gym. Skeletor's mercenaries arrive and pursue Julie until He-Man rescues her. The mercenaries return to Grayskull where, incensed by their failure, Skeletor kills Saurod and sends the others back to Earth with a larger force under the command of Evil-Lyn.
With the Key acquired, Skeletor triumphantly arrives on Earth. He-Man retrieves the Key from Evil-Lyn, but Skeletor surrounds his friends and critically injures Julie with his magic, destroying Gwildor's Key in the process. He-Man surrenders to save his friends and returns to Grayskull as Skeletor's prisoner. The remaining Eternians combine their technology to create a new Key, using a modern-day keyboard to play the special sequences of tones, which Kevin had memorized. Lubic blunders his way through the portal and is transported to Eternia with them.
The rescued Sorceress heals Julie, and a portal is opened to return the humans to Earth, except for Lubic who decides to stay on Eternia. Awaking the morning of her parents' death in a plane crash, Julie prevents them from taking their fateful flight. She then finds Kevin, who confirms their shared experiences were not just a dream and holds out a souvenir from Eternia: a small blue sphere containing a hologram of He-Man in front of Castle Grayskull.
After the credits, Skeletor's head emerges from liquid at the bottom of the pit and proclaims, "I will be back!"
A sequel was put into pre-production at one point The low-budget ($4.5 million) project that was to be directed (back to back with their aborted "Spider-Man" movie) by Albert Pyun was abandoned when Cannon wouldn't pay for Mattel's fees and the production used the already-made costumes and sets for the low budget sci-fi movie Cyborg.
Legacy: The actual Masters Of The Universe film doesn't carry a whole lot of legacy with it, but He-Man still resonates today. The toy line and cartoons were extremely popular and a rebooted cartoon in 2002 was well received and kept He-Man alive and well. Recent rumblings of a new live action film have interest in He-Man at a fever pitch again, and the original film hits Blu-Ray in October. Reports are that director Jon M. Chu is in negotiations to direct a new live action film with a script from Predators writers Alex Litvak and Mike Fitch. Chu recently directed the G.I. Joe sequel which is in post 3D conversion production for release next March. So a new Masters Of The Universe film could be on the horizons of Eternia but for now enjoy the 1987 film. You can pre-order your Blu-Ray here and check out trailers, posters, and more the film below.
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