The Killing of Satan (1983): Philippines – directed by Efren C. Piñon
Not rated by the MPAA – contains ridiculous violence, some blood, and some random background nudity
This movie is both as terrible and as awesome as its poster would lead you to believe. I have almost no idea what happened in it, but it was still quite amazing and quite unlike most any other movie I’ve seen.
There’s a plot, somewhere, but I’m still not entirely sure what all happened. All I know is that a large Filipino Charles Bronson gets some super powers and fights Satan. Or something. I can tell you in a little more detail what happens, but I’m not sure if it qualifies as a plot summary.
We meet some villagers, and they are getting harassed by some bad guys. One of the bad guys has special powers, as indicated by whirling sounds and sonic flashes of light. The leader of the village, Uncle Miguel, is injured by the bad guy. The bad guy makes his head spin around really fast, with his magic powers.
So then the village prays to Lando (not Calrissian, it’s just the movie’s name for the large Filipino Charles Bronson). Lando is Uncle Miguel’s nephew, and he lives on another island. He has recently been released from prison after attacking someone to protect his village. He has since sworn to not shoot people any more. But then the brother of the guy he killed attacks his house, killing his son. This leads him once more to violence, to protect his family, but he gets shot in the head.
I’m not sure why any of this really matters, though, because the rest of the movie has almost nothing to do with it. You see, the bullet only kills him for a short while. Pretty soon Uncle Miguel, who is lying in the other village, sick and in bed, takes the bullet out of Lando’s head (from a long way away) and implants it into his own brain. By doing so, Uncle Miguel dies. But Lando becomes his successor as the village’s leader and gains all of his powers.
I am totally serious.
So then Lando takes his wife and daughter (their son stayed dead) to the island, because all the prayers the villagers offered up (while chanting around a bunch of candles arranged in a cross shape) finally reached him, in the form of a dream. The outcome of the dream is in the picture below. Yes, the guy got run over by a falling rock.
Once on the island, Lando runs off with one of the local guys to explore where the bad guys went. While they are away, his daughter and another girl get kidnapped by the Prince of Magic. And his wife gets punched in the face. Fortunately, he has blue hand healing powers, and fixes her right up. So then he trots off after the Prince of Magic to rescue his daughter.
Along the way he meets some henchman, who are really snakes. One of them jumps at him, then turns into a mostly naked man that looks like a snake, but then turns back into a snake once Lando kills him. To defeat these minions Lando must use his newly acquired magical powers, some of which radiate out of his elbow, and some of which look like he’s shooting fireballs. He also punches people, uses a gun (though this is mostly before the powers) and throws a rock at some guy (this is after he has magic powers).
But soon he discovers that his daughter (and a bunch of random naked women, who merely stand around in the background) have all been taken captive. But the Prince of Magic doesn’t want to use them for himself, instead they are collected for his Master. And yes, his Master is Satan. Good thing Lando has run into an old man who also lives on the island. The movie definitely suggests that this old man is God. And he has a little boy with him who can’t talk. I think this is the Holy Spirit, and Lando, as the Saviour, is Jesus. And I am most definitely not making this up. The amount of Christian imagery (and more specifically, Catholic) is staggering. This shouldn’t be surprising, as the Philippines is a mostly Roman Catholic country, though here it is is mixed with animism and magic powerism. My aunt and uncle were missionaries in the Philippines for some years, I should ask them how it all works.
Anyway, God (I mean, the old man) gives Lando a magic staff, which is useful for beating people, shooting lasers, giving off electric shock treatments to bad guys, and…well, that’s about it. Regardless, Lando uses it to fight Satan. And, since I have already spoiled the whole rest of the movie, I shan’t spoil any more of it for you.
The movie is hilarious. It is poorly acted, atrociously written, shoddily edited, and badly dubbed. The special effects look like a Power Rangers episode, made in the 1960’s. In spite of all of this (well, probably because of it), the film was very enjoyable. It was rather violent at times, had a couple of scenes involving effective scares and special effects, and is quite simply one of the most hilarious bad movies I’ve ever seen. If you can find a copy, find a few friends, and have 90 minutes to waste, you will most likely enjoy the crappiness.