There Can Be Only Monday! Talking About Highlander… A Lot, Part 20

Last time: I wish Yelp had existed in 16th-century Scotland, because I’d love to see Connor and Heather’s review of their contractor. (Maybe they are DIYers? Using a paste of moss and Connor’s exile tears as mortar seems like something he’d do.)

20. Finally! Part 3: The Quickening, Which Follows The Shut-Uppening

Oh, dear: I get so caught up in this fight I’ve backed myself into writing an entire blog post about maybe two minutes of movie. Ah, well, I am nothing if not dedicated.

The fight continues on up the staircase toward the Epic Finish™, but not before more wall falls down—so much so, in fact, that the Kurgan is distracted and gets run right through the breastplate.You’d think that would take a few seconds of recovery, but he just pulls the blade out and uses it to leverage Ramirez down.

This scene is an excellent illustration of why I will never understand how injuries and recovery periods work on immortals. Does being “the strongest” mean it’s okay to get your throat cut, run through, and have a fall through a beam from an enormous height, all with approximate 15-second recoveries? Right after this, the Kurgan gives Ramirez what looks like a pretty shallow slice across the chest, and it seems to completely demoralize the guy. Why?

By now, of course, they’ve reach the top of the tower, which is still crumbling around everybody. For a moment, the bit they’re standing on looks like the neck and head of a dragon, which is great since that’s the Kurgan’s symbol. When they cut back to it, however, bits have fallen off and it’s just more cheap Freud sticking up in the air…which is everybody’s symbol in this movie (cf. that lovely shot of Ramirez’s codpiece when the Kurgan was slicing on him. I can’t imagine why I keep thinking of Lord Flashheart). The Kurgan runs Ramirez through and taunts him: eldritch lightning flashes!

Then the Kurgan spots poor Heather. What the heck did he think was doing all that screaming, Ye Olde ADT? Ramirez tries to protect her by saying she’s with him, but since he’s about to die, that doesn’t go so well.

“Tonight you sleep in hell,” the Kurgan tells Ramirez, looming menacingly over him. Why don’t I ever get to say things like that at my job? Three guesses as to whether he also gets to say the film’s tagline before Ramirez, blessedly, is silenced.

Then… well. I’ve already talked about the stupid tower remnant: do I have to tell you how the Kurgan holds his sword as the Quickening happens? I bet I don’t. In fact, so great is the force of this completely-not-a-sexual-analog thing that he plummets from one of the few high surfaces left on the damn tower, yet five seconds later is completely ready to grab poor Heather and drag her off.

Heather is by far the character I feel sorriest for in the entire movie, and this isn’t even the chief reason.

So that’s that. While the very end of the scene was definitely bad, every time I watch Ramirez get beheaded I have the same reaction:

And then I remember that the movie frames all this as Connor’s flashback… of events he wasn’t around for, and about which the movie later shows he has limited knowledge. For a second there, I was really getting excited.

Next time: Don’t say it five times, okay?

Next time on TCBOM!: We meet my favorite mortal character, and Connor makes a da-aaate…

J. A.

It reads. It writes. It watches. It researches. It overdoes many of those things!

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