Today in Movie History: August 20

They don’t call them the dog days for nothing.

Today’s sole entry stands as perhaps the most notable example of sloppy seconds in cinematic history: The Beastmaster, a dippy swords-and-sorcery epic that opened a few months after the genre flagship Conan the Barbarian and clearly the lesser work in every conceivable way. Nevertheless, it achieved a measure of renown, mostly on virtue of its kid-friendly premise and PG rating (unlike Conan’s hard R) which let young viewers eager for a little swords-and-sorcery sex and violence take a gander. The burgeoning VHS craze helped it find an audience on video, and today it’s… well let’s call it a harmless exercise in nostalgia and leave it at that. The film opened today in 1982.

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