Because this movie was made by Disney, parents expected it to be a warm and fuzzy adventure when it was first released in 1981. It’s more of a sword-and-sorcery affair that should appeal to Dungeons and Dragons fans but probably isn’t suitable for the under-tens (the dragon’s pretty nasty).
The King of Urland has kept peace in his land by making a deal with a dragon – the dragon leaves his kingdom alone in return for the occasional virgin sacrifice (another reason why you may not want younger children to watch this!). Wizard Ulrich (Richardson) may be the only one to stop the ritual, but he is killed, so his inexperienced apprentice Galen (MacNicol) decides it is up to him to destroy the dragon alone.
Filmed in what seems to be a landscape made up entirely of mud, this is less ‘pretty’ than many mythical screen adventures, but what it lacks in glamour it makes up for in edge-of-the-seat moments when the dragon is finally revealed, flames firing from its angry mouth.
Is Dragonslayer suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
As mentioned above, this isn’t suitable for young children. As well as dragons eating someone, there are also people burnt alive and the frightening dragon itself. One for older kids.