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Legend (1985)


Average Rating: 5.2/10
Reviews Counted: 21
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 11

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.

No Score Yet...
Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 0 | Rotten: 1

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.


Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 100,699



Movie Info

This lavishly staged and costumed fantasy is about young Jack (Tom Cruise) and his lady love Princess Lili (Mia Sara), and how Jack battles Darkness (Tim Curry) to save both the Princess and the world. When the peasant Jack takes Princess Lili to see the unicorns, the strongest animals around, he does not know that Darkness, with his cloven hooves, yellow eyes, and red skin plans on using Lili as bait to weaken the unicorns which he does -- and plunge the world into an ice age. Soon after that … More

PG (violence)
Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By:
William Hjortsberg
In Theaters:
May 21, 2002
Universal Pictures



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Critic Reviews for Legend

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (10) | Rotten (11) | DVD (35)

All of the special effects in the world, and all of the great makeup, and all of the great Muppet creatures can't save a movie that has no clear idea of its own mission and no joy in its own accomplishment.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Thatcher. Reagan. Flock of Seagulls. These weren't the only evil things from the 1980s. There were also Hollywood fantasy movies such as this one . . .

Full Review… | November 6, 2007
Sci-Fi Movie Page

Ridley's misstep.

October 11, 2003

The cool costumes and set designs almost make it worthwhile, so long as the sound's turned down and you don't have to hear the witless dialogue

January 24, 2003
New Times

"glorious visuals -- shame about the script"

July 29, 2002
Kalamazoo Gazette

Perhaps ahead of its time, certainly too ambitious for its budget and its era, Legend is nevertheless a fascinating film

June 13, 2002
Q Network Film Desk

Could have been a genre classic if it had benefited from a meatier screenplay and a studio that didn't butcher the final product.

Full Review… | May 27, 2002
Apollo Guide

Ridley Scott's exclusive-to-DVD re-edit of Legend, no pun intended, is fantastic.

Full Review… | May 15, 2002
Film Freak Central

Legend is a Gothic fairy tale brought to life.

Full Review… | May 6, 2002
Slant Magazine

The movie is enchanting and has moments of magic, but it's an utter train wreck, overwhelmed by cheesy special effects, dialogue writ insanely large, and a kind of goofy plot.

Full Review… | April 30, 2002

Scott is less interested in unraveling a plot than he is in capturing the look and feel of myth

Full Review… | January 1, 2000

Audience Reviews for Legend

Legend looks stunning, it's so dreamy looking, it's the ultimate visualisation of a fairy-tale. It has everything that a good fairy-tale should have too, the story is sound, it has some interesting characters and a brilliant villain. It's just that it seems to have got forgotten among the Princes Bride, Willow, Labyrinth, Dark Crystal, Time Bandits and all the other fantasy films out at that time. It's a shame but as much as I liked it, those other films do have that certain something that Legend didn't.

Anthony Lawrie

Super Reviewer


Growing up, "Legend" was one of my absolute favorite movies. The story, the images, and especially the amazing makeup job of Darkness just did for me what few films did. It's the story of good versus evil in a fairy tale setting. Darkness(Tim Curry) uses a Princess named Lili to lead him to and help weaken two unicorns. Once the unicorns are dead, he can plunge the world into a never ending ice age. However, Jack(Tom Cruise) teams up with elves and fairies to rescue Lili and destroy Darkness forever. May think a movie with fairies is gay, well screw you, this movie is freaking awesome. It holds up amazingly well, especially in high definition. Looks like it was made this year(well some of the scenes are dated, but overall it looks amazing). Darkness is probably the absolute coolest looking villain in movie history. As a kid he was absolutely terrifying to watch. Ridley Scott wrote and directed this and he did an amazing job, and proves again he is one of the best directors ever. If you want to introduce your kids to a great fantasy movie, then I would say start with this. I cannot wait to share this with my son as he gets older.

Everett Johnson
Everett Johnson

Super Reviewer


Something different this way comes...
Having said that, you'd possibly expect more than what you get here. However, good special effects and various creature creations always gathers my interest. We don't really get that anymore, so this is an example of something you look back on and think hey, this is kind of cool.

Eric S

Super Reviewer

Ridley Scott's 1980s fantasy epic brings a lot of cheese and kitsch into the genre, which is also the aspect of the film that didn't age that well. The make-up effects and production design hold up really well after all those years, you gotta admit that the magic forest as it is shown here has more atmosphere and depth than in most fantasy films of the 90s. The movie's biggest asset, apart from seeing Tom Cruise taking his first big screen steps, is Tim Curry in his mask as the lord of Darkness. He gets more acting across with his eyes and evil laughter than other actors throughout their whole career. If only he had more screen time and there was less cheese and random weirdness, this would be a highlight of the genre. As it is, it still works as a guilty pleasure for a cold winter afternoon.

Jens S.

Super Reviewer

Legend Quotes

Jack: You don't really plan on eating me, do you? Meg Mucklebones: Oh, indeed I do! Haha!
– Submitted by Zach W (22 months ago)
Darkness: What is light without dark? What are you without me? I am a part of you all. You can never defeat me. We are brothers eternal!
– Submitted by Lauralee L (2 years ago)
Darkness: Oh, Mother Night! Fold your dark arms about me. Protect me in your black embrace. I sit alone, an impotent exile, whilst this form, this presence, returns to torment me!
– Submitted by Chris J (2 years ago)
Blunder: She was so sweet I could eat her brains like jam. Pox: I could suck her bones!
– Submitted by Zach W (2 years ago)
Jack: As long as they roam the earth, evil can never harm the pure of heart.
– Submitted by Corinna M (3 years ago)

Discussion Forum

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