I’m not sure what I was looking at, but earlier today I came across a reference to a post-apocalyptic Australian movie from 1989 called The Blood of Heroes. It sounded interesting, so I jumped on the torrents and pulled down a copy of the original uncut version. (Apparently The Blood of Heroes is the slightly cut-down American release version. I got the original Australian version which was known as The Salute of the Jugger.)
I think the best way to describe it would be as a cross between Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome and The Mighty Ducks (or any other sports movie where the underdogs win big in the end). It’s the story of a team of “Juggers” who travel around from town to town challenging local teams to “the game”. I don’t think they ever name it, but basically it’s two teams of 5 players fighting each other to be the first stick a dog skull on a pointed stake.
The exact same plot has been used in so many movies you can’t say who stole it from whom, but overall this was a pretty cool movie. The production value was excellent, with good costumes and great settings. The desert towns looked as you would expect, and the underground city was very believable. And it even starred several recognizable faces like Rutger Hauer, Joan Chen, and Vincent D’Onofrio.
I’m not sure how I missed this one, but apparently enough people saw it that they’ve created the real sport of Jugger out of the game played in the movie. There are teams in several countries, with the game’s popularity expanding even now.
If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s available at Netflix, or grab a copy online. It’s worth the download.