I think I can state with utmost certainty that Jeffrey Combs can do no wrong. Much like Bruce Campbell, Combs is one of those actors who will always be remembered for giving 100% in every role he undertakes. And, like Campbell, he will always be known for certain characters he brought to life. One of these for Combs is Doctor Mordrid, a sorcerer from another dimension who has vowed to protect Earth. And regardless of whether you are a fan of magic or not, you’ll love seeing Combs don his blue wizard’s robes for battle.
If you are not familiar with DOCTOR MORDRID, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Full Moon Features:
Two beings from another dimension; two sorcerers with immeasurable powers. One has sworn to destroy the Earth; the other has vowed to protect it. Their timeless battle has crossed over from the fourth dimension and only one man will reign in the end…
Doctor Mordrid (JEFFREY COMBS) is the chosen guardian who can protect the Earth from eternal darkness; Kabal (BRIAN THOMPSON) is his vengeful enemy whose implacable wrath has escalated with time. Kabal has arrived on Earth and is planning to use his infinite powers to unleash a horde of hellish demons to devour and destroy humankind. Bound by hate and a mystical amulet that holds the powers of life and death, the immortal wizards will meet for the last time. Their centuries-old rivalry has matured into the ancient struggle of good versus evil. Now, their battle takes on majestic proportions as Mordrid and Kabal give life to prehistoric skeletons and begin their final conflict… Doctor Mordrid has been remastered in high-definition and looks better than ever!
I read somewhere Charles Band had the option back in 1992 to make a Doctor Strange movie, based on the Marvel comic character, but the option expired before production could begin. As a result, Band rewrote the script, made many changes, and wound up making this film instead. I’m glad he did, too, because I think I enjoy this one much more than I would a Doctor Strange adaptation.
DOCTOR MORDRID is shot well and looks much like many of the Full Moon films from back in that day. The sets and the production design are obviously lower budget, but they still look great. I particularly like the floating castle where Kabal was imprisoned. This looks wicked onscreen, and the set pieces that accompany it are nice as well.
The acting is pretty good, although Combs certainly steals the show. I do have to give credit to Yvette Nipar, however, for she plays a great love interest for Combs’ character. And, screen vet Brian Thompson gives his usual over-the-top performance as the psychotic Kabal.
The special effects in DOCTOR MORDRID are very good for this time period, with several magic-casting scenes that are impressive displays of technical wizardry. Keep in mind, this film came out prior to CG, so the filmmakers had to use practical effects and camera tricks to achieve their goals. As such, this is a great-looking piece of filmmaking.
My sole complaint about DOCTOR MORDRID is the ending. I won’t give away specifics, however I will say it is kinda abrupt. Everything is wrapped up, however I would have liked to have seen a longer resolution.
But don’t let that dissuade you from seeing this film. DOCTOR MORDRID is a lot of fun, and fans of Full Moon will definitely want to snatch this up. I’ve never seen the DVD or VHS versions, however I can tell you the HD quality on the Blu-ray is superb. The Blu-ray is also loaded with special features, like:
-Brand new audio commentary with star Jeffrey Combs and producer/director Charles Band
-Original VideoZone making-of featurette
-Rare William Shatner interview with Jeffrey Combs and Barbara Crampton
-Uncut behind-the-scenes footage from the Full Moon Vault
The Doctor Mordrid Blu-ray is now available on Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Doctor-Mordrid-Jeffrey-Combs/dp/B00NABSZ12