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Review: Fire and Ice

Watched Fire and Ice on Kanopy. How in God’s name did I reach adulthood without having experienced this sword-and-sorcery masterpiece? Directed by Ralph Bakshi, co-produced by Frank Frazetta (who also contributed to the costume designs, which means the women are half-nude and the men are somehow even more scantily clad), and written by longtime Marvel scribes Gerry Conway and Roy Thomas, this animated epic would have absolutely blown my mind had I discovered it at Blockbuster/my local library back when I was young and impressionable.

I mean, it’s not very good: the plot (evil wizard wants to conquer the world; shirtless meathead, plucky princess, and the barbarian equivalent of the Goddamn Batman band together to oppose him) is thin to the point of malnourishment, and Bakshi’s trademark sketchy rotoscoping often meshes poorly with the hand painted backgrounds. But the gorgeous world building (Ancient ruins! Fortresses carved out of glaciers and volcanos! The skeletal remains of gargantuan beasts!) is enough to compensate for these minor flaws. I’m sorry I missed this one as a lad, when I might have enjoyed it with fewer reservations… but better late than never, I suppose.

[Originally written April 11, 2018.]

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