The third of four Deathstalker movies, following Rick Hill as the hero in Deathstalker* and John Terlesky taking over in Deathstalker II, this installment finds John Allen Nelson (Killer Klowns from Outer Space) taking over as the Deathstalker.
Deathstalker once saved the wizard Nicias (Mexican telenovella actor Aarón Hernán) and as such, they now travel to villages where the old man tells the future. At one such place, a hooded woman reveals herself to be the Princess Carissa (Carla Sands, who was appointed the U.S. Ambrassador to Denmark in 2017), who knows of a magical stone that can combine with the one Nicias alrady has to reveal the secret city of Arandor. All they have to do is battle the evil sorcerer Troxartes (Thom Christopher, Hawk from Buck Rogers) to get it. That shouldn’t be so bad, right?
That’s when Makut and his men attack. Nicias teleports to safety while Deathstalker must battle his way out. Carissa? Yeah, she doesn’t make it. If you haven’t seen the other films, Deathstalker screws up spectacularly quite often, unlike Conan, whose movies he’s cashing in on. He heads off to the home country of Troxartes, meeting with Carissa’s twin Princess Elizena and being chased by Makut, who has brought back all of Deathstalker’s deceased enemies from beyond the grave.
Oh yeah — he also meets a local girl named Marinda who he beds in less time than it will take for you to read this review. There’s also an undead warrior named Gragas who remembers that he died honorably against Deathstalker (they can’t mean Oghris from the first movie, right? Why do I remember Deathstalker cannon better than the people who made these movies?) and reveals that all the dead souls are trapped doing the bidding of their master.
Of course, there are three stones needed, not just one. And yes, there’s no way Marinda or any of the bad guys are going to survive. You know who is? Deathstalker. He just gets on his horse and rides away after decimating the lives of everyone around him, like the Hyborian Jessica Fletcher.
It’s worth mentioning that unlike all of the other films in this series, this does not use stock footage of the other Deathstalker films. It does, however, take liberally from Corman’s The Raven. It also takes the soundtrack** from Battle Beyond the Stars, just like so many Corman productions. There’s even an IMDB list that has taken stock of all the movies Corman made that reuse bits and pieces of that film, so I guess he was a green filmmaker back before that was a thing.
This is the kind of junk food film that goes well on a cold and rainy Saturday. It was written by Howard R. Cohen, who also brought us The Unholy Rollers, Saturday the 14th, Saturday the 14th Strikes Back, Stryker, Barbarian Queen II and episodes of both Rainbow Brite and The Care Bears.
You can watch the MST3K verson of this on Tubi or the unriffed version on YouTube.
*Hill would come back for the fourth movie, 1991’s Deathstalker IV: Match of Titans. It is my job to know these things.
**It also outright rips off Brian Eno’s prophecy theme from Dune.