Could Beastmaster II be the greatest fantasy movie of all time?

Move over, Peter Jackson. Your lavish Tolkien adaptations cannot possibly compete with the bugtastic spectacle that is Beastmaster II: Through The Portal of Time.

Seriously — Beastmaster II is one of those films you can only just marvel at, in dumbstruck wonder. Just watch our clip reel. This is one of those films that has absolutely everything — there's the beast-mastery, monster-fighting and sword-wrangling from the first movie, but there's also a new, scenery-masticating villain. And a trip to 1990s L.A. It took Star Trek four films to visit present-day California, but the Beastmaster series got there in two.

Just behold the awesomeness. Including part of the opening sequence, where Beastmaster is sentenced to death and his animals rescue him — just watch those ferrets chew through his bonds! And the bit where the archvillain Arklon pretends to be in love with the evil witch for 30 seconds, just for a laugh. And then the witch decides to quote then-president George Bush. Awesome! Also, Arklon gets hassled by street punks, busts up a classy clothing store, and steals some poor shlub's memories. It's all classic stuff.


(Oh and yes — the Beastmaster films star Mark Singer, from the original V. He told us at Wondercon that he really wants to do a cameo if they make a new Beastmaster movie. He can still swing a sword.)

But my favorite part is probably where they're driving around L.A. and Dar the Beastmaster learns how to say "asshole," and he and his pet ferrets both start staring at all the advertisements for erotic entertainments. And then — just to prove that you don't have to be a postmodern literary genius to be metafictional — Beastwizard sees a movie theater advertising Beastmaster II: Through The Portal of Time. Whoa!

Joe Bob Briggs showed this immortal classic on his late-night TNT show once, and it's all on YouTube. Not only do you get to see the learned commentary from the master, you also get get to see all the gory details. It's not embeddable, but you can watch it starting here. The opening sequence, where Lord Arklon nearly beheads the Beastmaster but his pets save him, is totally epic and the only part of the entire movie where the animals get to do much of anything. [IMDB]

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I'd be much obliged to io9 if it never said anything positive about Beastmaster II ever again.

Why don't you go ahead and rave about how awesome the He-Man movie was next...