Definitely a feature length movie. Probably in theaters at some point, but might have been a 'made for TV movie'.

It was on TV, in the USA, by early-1999 or earlier (I remember which house I lived in when I saw it on TV, and I moved out of that house before June of 1999, so it must have been then or earlier). My best guess is that I saw it in the 1992-1996 range.

The theme/genre/style of the movie was a fantasy adventure, in the vein of the Schwarzenegger Conan movie, Beastmaster (1982), Red Sonja, etc. (since originally posting this question, I have ruled out those three themselves, see list of movies that have been ruled out, below). The overly-muscled and inadequately armored hero, overly dramatic fight choreography, absurdly fantastical enemies and settings, etc.

The scene I most clearly remember was of the damsel in distress. There were no prison bars or the like. Instead the scene seemed to be in a relatively large open room of a castle or fortress, a great hall or large feasting/dining room or something that size. The walls were definitely supposed to be stone and mortar, very large and rectangular cut stones, this was made clear by the closeups of the damsel in distress, as she was chained to the wall with hands above her head. The lighting of the scene was also somewhat unique, it was definitely firelight, not from candles but from a much larger flame source, such as a dozen or more torches or a large fireplace or fire-pit.

The scene did include both a close-up shot of the damsel in distress' face, as well as a full body shot showing her standing on the ground, and there were no explicit images in the scene. There may have been other scenes in the original cut of the film that were explicit, but none would have been included on the TV run I saw, as it would have been edited for content to the point that anything more risque than a bikini would not have been shown.

Movies that have been eliminated as possibilities:

  1. Sinbad of the Seven Seas (1989)

  2. Krull (1983)

  3. Barbarian Queen (1985)

  4. Kull the Conqueror (1997)

  5. The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973? '74?)

  6. The Beastmaster (1982)

  7. Conan the Barbarian (1982)

  8. Conan the Destroyer (1984)

  9. Red Sonja (1985)

  10. Beastmaster 2

  11. Beastmaster 3

  12. Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger (1977)

  13. The Sword and the Sorcerer (1982)

  14. Legend (1985)

  15. Quest for the Mighty Sword (1990)

  16. Clash of the Titans (1981)

  17. Willow

  18. Land of Doom (1986)

  19. Prince Valiant (1997)


4 Answers 4


Might you be thinking of the original Clash of the Titans? It came out in 1981 and did get some tv airtime in the 90s.

Our heroine Andromeda does indeed end up chained to a rock. A minor point that conflicts with your memory is that the rock is outdoors, but that could account for the unusual light source. It checks your other boxes as well- Harry Hamlin as our muscled and under dressed hero, lots of sword fights, big scary monsters (Harryhausen at his finest).

Andromeda chained to a rock

  • Not sure of the etiquette for posting a second answer, but it's distinct enough from my first suggestion that I did not feel comfortable editing it in. Jun 14, 2019 at 2:16
  • 3
    It's a different answer, so it's actually better if it's posted separately.
    – DavidW
    Jun 14, 2019 at 2:50
  • 1
    I've no reason to think there is any issue in posting a second answer, as long as it is actually distinct from the first answer, like this one certainly is. I'll add it to my list to double check it, but I suspect that's not the one I'm looking for, specifically because of the outdoors/lighting you mentioned. But the rest is close enough to be worth a look anyway, just to be sure.
    – Harthag
    Jun 14, 2019 at 13:40

Barbarian Queen (1985)?

From IMDb:

Set during the days of the Roman Empire. A simple village is raided by Roman troops, and most of the people are whisked off to be slaves or killed. Three women survive and set off to liberate their people. When they arrive at the Roman city, they team up with the local underground to seek vengeance and liberation of the slaves.

Warning, trailer is NSFW (violence, breasts)

There's a scene with a woman being tied to a big stone of sorts, in a dungeon, seemingly candle-lighted. It was Valorum's answer to 80's barbarian movie with female lead, evil scientist, pool of acid - which I shamelessly stole!

The scene in question can be seen here at timecode 00:49:07. Warning, it's also very NSFW.

Found with the SFF query user:20774 url:.ru is:a [story-identification], as I knew I had seen such a thing here before, remembered OP stating it was a terrible scene (which reminded me of Valorum's wordings), and I vaguely remembered it having to do with Russian dubbing/hosting.

  • That's kind of a steal though, so if @Valorum wants the answer back, I'll take that one down :-)
    – Jenayah
    Jan 14, 2019 at 20:12
  • Eh - in light of the latest edit, if the movie at stake didn't venture into "risque" grounds, this is totally not Barbarian Queen :-) leaving the answer for now, as it seemed to more or less fit the rest of the question.
    – Jenayah
    Jan 14, 2019 at 20:35
  • I can't rule it out, at the moment, and I'm certainly looking in to it as a possibility. But the scene referenced in the answer is certainly not the scene I'm referring to in my question. But just because the scenes aren't a match doesn't mean the movie isn't the correct one. I just can't confirm, yet, if it is in fact the one I'm looking for or not.
    – Harthag
    Jan 14, 2019 at 21:31
  • Yowser. That film came with a double NSFW/NSFL warning on my answer.
    – Valorum
    Jan 14, 2019 at 22:33
  • Seventy-one minutes of topless barbarian women with California accents and impeccable '80s hair.
    – Buzz
    Jan 15, 2019 at 3:11

Any chance you're thinking of Kull the Conqueror (released 1997)? It's also a Robert E. Howard adaptation, so the association with Conan makes sense. Furthermore, it was supposed to be a Conan film originally, but Schwarzenegger backed out, and was replaced with Kevin Sorbo (of Hercules/Xena fame).

I can't find many stills, but I remember the love interest being a slave, so that might track with your memory of a woman being chained.

  • Possibly. Like Barbarian Queen from the previous answer, I can't rule it out, yet. But I also can't confirm it yet. It's been added to my list to investigate. It definitely fits the genre timeline.
    – Harthag
    Jan 15, 2019 at 13:55
  • Sorry, it's been checked and ruled out. Good suggestion, and right on the money as far as genre and style, etc., just not the specific movie I was looking for.
    – Harthag
    Jun 13, 2019 at 13:00

One of the many Beastmaster (Beastmaster II: Through the Portal of Time, Beastmaster III: The Eye of Braxus) maybe? They are high fantasy type movies like the ones you listed, with the "overly-muscled and inadequately armored hero, overly dramatic fight choreography, absurdly fantastical enemies and settings".

Two more suggestions, both involve a woman being held hostage:

  • Hawk the Slayer - Heroes are trying to rescue a woman from some evil guy.
  • The Barbarians - The Queen of a tribe of barbarians is kidnapped and the heroes are trying to rescue her.

And one more for good measure, I don't really remember the plot, but it's in the ballpark of the genres you describe, check out Masters of the Universe.

  • 1
    I've already ruled out the first one, but the sequels are now on my list to check and haven't yet been ruled out.
    – Harthag
    Apr 8, 2019 at 17:38
  • Sorry, they've all been checked and ruled out. Good suggestions, and on the money as far as genre and style, etc., just not the specific movie I was looking for.
    – Harthag
    Jun 13, 2019 at 12:58
  • There was also a Beastmaster TV series that started airing in 1999, it might be from an episode of that.
    – DMfiend
    Jun 13, 2019 at 13:03
  • Sorry, the dates in my original question weren't precise enough, I've edited them for clarity. I checked the release dates for that TV series, and the earliest episode was on TV about 3 months too late to have been what I saw.
    – Harthag
    Jun 13, 2019 at 13:24

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