THE NEW BARBARIANS
WARRIORS OF THE WASTELAND
(I Nuovi Barbari)
The director/co-writer is Enzo G. Castellari, the Italian exploitation director who has made his career from ripoffs of other films:- The Warriors (1979) and Escape from New York (1981) 1990: The Bronx Warriors (1990) and sequel; Jaws (1975) in Shark/Great White (1982) and here Mad Max 2 (1981). Dozens of similar Mad Max copies were being made around the same time in Italy. Castellari conducts his with dutiful slavishness the hero defending a small pacifist community from wasteland crazies, a cute ragamuffin kid sidekick, and numerous chases in ramshackle vehicles. At least, The New Barbarians takes the underlying elements of gay leather fetishism that lay unmistakably beneath Mad Max 2 and brings them into the open the Templars are openly gay and the film even features a scene where they rape the hero.
There is a great deal of lunacy, verging on the surreal, to be found in the vehicular battles between cars, which are disguised golf carts and dune buggies that travel at only about five miles an hour and comes armed with spiked wheels, flame-throwers under the hoods and something like a hedge-clipper sidearm that decapitates people victims in ridiculous sploshes of unconvincing gore. The dialogue defies belief upon arriving at a Christian community the following straight-faced exchange takes place: Girl And our leaders name is ... Nadir Let me guess. Its Moses? Girl Riiight.
Enzo G. Castellaris other genre films are: the giallo psycho-thriller Cold Eyes of Fear (1971), the revenge film The House By the Edge of the Lake (1979), Shark/The Great White (1982), 1990: The Bronx Warriors (1982), Bronx Warriors 2 (1983), the mad scientist/action film Light Blast (1985) and Sinbad of the Seven Seas (1989). These days Castellari is perhaps better remembered as director of the original Inglorious Bastards (1978).