Cave Dwellers is actually a sequel and its original title was something along the lines of Ator: The Blade Master. However, this film was done by the same people who did various other films back in the day so they changed the title, changed the credits and added footage from another film in the credits! They have to be the same people who did Pod People too, and what else do this and Pod People have in common? They were both riffed mercilessly on Mystery Science Theater 3000. Not sure why they added the footage from another film as it kind of confuses things, it certainly did with Pod People as the alien in the credit sequence looked nothing like the creature in the film. Here you have a completely looking film all together! The title is rather stupid too. Not the Ator one, but rather the Cave Dweller one as there are Cave Dwellers in the film, but they make up such an insignificant plot point that one wonders what the people at this company were thinking. Heck, the flashback sequence detailing the first film was almost as long as the cave dweller portion of this film! So this company just may have been run by people who liked to edit stuff as a hobby, maybe?
The story, a bad guy goes to a castle to get some sort of new weapon or something from some old man who prattles on and on. The old man's daughter must go to the ends of the earth and there she will find Ator and his mute sidekick Thong. Ator is a man of legend who has killed a spider puppet already and he has also mastered the sword and getting buff and greasy! He joins up with the daughter as they set off on a quest to save her father, but for some reason the way back to the castle is much longer than the way to Ator's place. They must fight invisible soldiers, cavemen, wicker wearing warriors, a snake puppet and finally make their way to the final confrontation where the old man will implore Ator not to kill the evil doer so he can be tried...um, Ator has been killing left and right, why stop him now?
This made for a great episode of MST3K as it is one of my favorite Joel episodes. I prefer Mike, but here, Joel is on fire as he was in Pod People too. This company may edit a film to the point of lunacy, but the end result is a film worthy of some riffing. Not a film though that I would want to track down and see unedited from said company and Joel and the bots as I just do not see it vastly improving at all. The only way I'd want to see it, is if the female lead got topless or something and I do not get that vibe from this one.
So, a bad film indeed. There is better action in the flashbacks than in most of the film and too often there is just way to much lead up until something actually does happen. Case in point, the whole snake sacrifice scene. We get to watch the bad guys send multiple damsels into a hole while the hero's sidekick takes his sweet time making his way to the hero. By the end of the sequence, all the damsels were dead! Not very heroic and it took way to long! Suffice to say Conan the Barbarian would kill Ator in a fight. Heck, this guy is not even as good as Yor: The Hunter from the Future. Now that guy was bad to the bone, he didn't make no hang glider, he flipping used a pterodactyl! That is hardcore Ator! You are not!