Seeking the origins of their immortality, the last band of eternal warriors, led by the Highlander, embark on a dangerous quest to find The Source in this thrilling new chapter of the legendary saga. Adrian Paul stars.
With spinoffs including live action and animated films and television series, comic books, and more, the Highlander franchise has yielded its fair share of noble moments over the years, starting with the original film in 1986. But while Highlander 5: The Source has some cool special effects work and enough video game violence to enthrall adolescent boys, longtime fans agree that this made-for-TV flick is, to put it mildly, no Oscar contender. Adrian Paul, reprising the role he played in Highlander: Endgame (2000) and the Highlander TV series, is Duncan MacLeod, the ageless Scotsman hailing from the 16th Century. The storyline isn't easy to decipher, but it has to do with the imminent cosmic alignment of the planets and other celestial bodies, which will lead to "the moment of the Source," wherein lies the secret to the origin of MacLeod and his crew's immortality. (A note about the film's tagline, "The quest for mortality begins": Seems that being immortal ain't all it's cracked up to be; not only can these guys die, but they are unable to breed, which is a big problem for Duncan and his mortal girlfriend, hence his plan to locate the Source and become, you know, a regular dude.) This is generic comic book stuff, taking place in a crumbling, Road Warrior-esque world populated by characters with names like The Elder, The Guardian, The Watchers, and The Ancient One. The script, by Stephen Kelvin Watkins and Mark Bradley, is fraught with big, portentous statements, while director Brett Leonard seems more interested in staging the next fight sequence than giving us a clue as to what's actually going on. If this is the end of the Highlander story, and many seem to think it will be, fans had every right to hope for a more dignified death knell than The Source. --Sam Graham