Shockingly the movie doesn’t open with the standard narration, we do eventually find out that this is at least a couple of generations after a nuclear war, but opens with a BANG as an army of nefarious baddies shell the crap out of a ramshackle village. This army is led by a warlord by the name of William (Luke Askew) and he is after water. His men lob rocket after rocket into this town, in between machine gunning down the fleeing inhabitants, unfortunately this town doesn’t have much water but after interrogating one of the villagers they learn that the town of Chinle has a large supply of this most precious commodity. William orders a group of his men to secure Chinle while he and the rest of the men forage the area for more supplies. Um, isn’t water a most crucial supply? Why send a handful of men to hopefully secure your armies life’s blood when you could easily take it with your full army and then forage later from a secure location?
William is a top notch warlord, but a very poor delegator.To be fair the men he sent do this job easily take over the village of Chinle, but then they “secure” the village as ordered and not just wipe out the inhabitants. This is a change in tactics with no logical reason. Now in The Seven Samurai and The Magnificent Seven the bandits needed the village to provide food, if they just road in and murdered all the farmers there would be no one to plant and harvest more crops in the future. Thus keeping the villagers kowtowed but alive was crucial, but in Dune Warriors the town of Chinle has apparently a spring of inexhaustible water and the last time I checked you didn’t need farmers to plant or harvest water. So exactly why are these people being spared? In the opening scene William had his men murder an entire village before finding out if they had water, which they didn’t, but for some reason he doesn’t order the extermination of the people that do. All the sparring of Chinle does is allow the movies heroine time to sneak out and find warriors to help free the village. Enter Val (Jillian McWhirter) a pretty blonde who asks her fiancé, “Luis, don’t you want to see something of this world other than this valley?”
Henry Strzalkowski) is the son of the Reynaldo (Joseph Zucchero), a member of the village council, and both father and son are duplicitous cowardly asshats. When William’s men take the village these two jerks do their best to convince the town folk to submit to this new ruler, and Luis doesn’t even try and prevent Val from an attempted raped. Val’s brother on the other hand does try and help and he gets shot for his trouble. With the death of her brother, and the wishy washiness of the villagers, Val decides that she must go elsewhere for help and so one night she sneaks off into the dark.
And because this is a Cirio H. Santiago film she runs into dwarves.These Jawa wannabes chase after our poor unarmed Val but before they can catch and…eat her? Well before they catch and do whatever a band of angry desert dwarves would do with a young woman, she is rescued by Michael (David Carradine). His rescue consists of waving his arms and saying, “Get out of here” and though this technique works I must say Ben Kenobi’s krayt dragon impression to scare off the Tusken Raiders was way cooler. Val asks Michael where she could find warriors to recruit for her cause and he says the best place to look would be in Freetown.
Rick Hill), Dorian (Blake Boyd) and their friend Ricardo (Dante Verona) to ask for their help, but before she has a chance one of the saloon patrons recognizes John and Dorian as conmen who hoodwinked his whole town. A bar fight ensues and the two escape by jumping onto Michael’s truck. When Val fills them in on her town’s need, and the endless supply of water as a reward, they decide to help her. While on the way to Chinle they run into Miranda (Maria Isabel Lopez) a friend of Michaels who is a fellow warrior of the wasteland, and thus we now have our Magnificent...um…five?
Miranda will be the tough chick that tragically dies. Another Santiago staple.Our warriors stage a brilliant night attack that easily defeats the men holding Chinle, but John and friends don’t get the warrior`s welcome they expected as Luis and his father are constantly working the villagers into giving into William’s command. Luckily Val’s father gives a rousing speech, not quite a St. Crispin Day speech but it's enough to get the villages motivated to fight, and so John and friends proceed to train these hapless farmers in the art of war. Oh, and by art of war I mean mostly training them in using their farming implements for staff fighting.
It’s not all hard work and training for the people of Chinle as we also have Luis getting jealous of Dorian who is making moves on Val, and being Luis is an established weasel and a coward we know how this is going to turn out. That she never loved Luis, it being an arranged marriage to end strife between two families, certainly didn’t help his case. That isn’t the only love that blooms as we also get a tryst between John and Miranda which is of course immediately forgotten when she dies.
And the film does have the required gratuitous nudity.The cuckolder Luis helps two of William’s men escape so that they can warn the warlord of these interlopers and their plans, but then the king of delegation sends just five more vehicles to once again secure the town. William is apparently waiting around the desert for some gasoline convoy which never shows up. Of course five “Road Warrior” modded cars should be enough to take out a town that has plywood walls, and is guarded by farmers with sticks, but they did not count on John’s secret weapon.
A rope net?Seriously, they take out an armored car with a fucking rope net. Defeating this one car turns the tide and William’s men are soon captured and their weapons added to Chinle’s arsenal. Meanwhile back with William he is in trouble because the gasoline convoy he’s been waiting for has not shown up and he’s about out of water. This is why dicking around the desert for days, doing who knows what, was a poor choice when his army could have easily wiped out Chinle ten times over and then gone out to find this mysterious convoy. Finally realizing water is kind of crucial to his army not dying of thirst they had to Chinle, but they are repulsed by flamethrowers mounted on the walls of Chinle.
I'd be careful using a flamethrower next to that much cardboard.Traitorous Luis sneaks out of the village, cutting the fuel lines to the flamethrowers before leaving, and he runs off to inform William on how best to take the village. Meanwhile John has sent Ricardo to sneak into the enemy camp to destroy their water supply so that William can’t win a siege. What the fuck? How does John think there is even going to be a siege? William has dozens of armored vehicles, many of which contain rocket launchers and mortars, and Chinle has the aforementioned plywood walls, a couple of machine guns, and a bunch of sticks. How could a battle between these two parties last more than an hour let alone turn into a siege?
Reality does win out as William attacks in the morning, and despite a valiant attempt by the villagers, William and his army kick their asses. Miranda is killed, the place is shelled to pieces, and most of the good guys have to flee into the hills.
Val Garay), his second in command who failed to take Chinle, must have a duel to the death with Dorian. Strangely we don’t find out who would have won because just as the fight is getting good, well as good as poorly choreographed knife fight can get, John and Michael launch a counter attack. But wouldn’t this attack be suicidal? How could our band of farmers hope to overcome a vastly superior force? Well turns out while hiding in the hills one of the village kids found a cave that contained weapons and munitions depot. How’s that for lucky?