I was fortunate to catch the re-webcast of an interview with John Rhys-Davies on the Alex Jones Infowars.com web site. It was evident, as the interview pressed on, that he is not just another pretty face. He has a mind. He has a passion for freedom that stems from his youth. His father, a policeman, took him to the docks, once, and explained to him that ships that came through bound for Africa would usually return to Saudi Arabia with two or three black youths to be sold as slaves. Saudi Arabia, he explained, did not outlaw slavery until 1965.
Although he has been acting since 1964, he probably first came to prominence to American audiences with his roles as Sallah in the Indiana Jones series of films. He voiced many animated series—such as Batman and the Fantastic Four—until becoming involved in the Sliders series in the late 1990s. He played the role of the dwarf Gimil in the recent brilliant adaptation of J.R.R. Tolken’s Lord of the Rings. Although he has a bunch of movies in post-production, he took time to speak with Alex Jones about a documentary that he was involved in with entitled Reclaiming the Blade written and directed by Daniel McNicoll. It is currently available online for $27.95.
Explaining how he got involved in the film he said, “Well, I get sent a number of scripts, some of which are very good and some of which are pretty mediocre. This one really stuck out like a sore thumb, but I mean a very golden thumb. It was on a subject that I’ve not seen covered before, and it had a lot of material in it that I thought was unique and fascinating. Anybody who is interested in history at all will be interested in this extrodinary documentary.”
“The sword is such an elegant symbol of so much, isn’t it? The sword is the symbol of the cross. The sword is man’s means of protecting himself. The sword… It’s a symbol of Justice.”
He went on to relate a story of an archeaoligist that he heard. “There was a fascinating story the other day, there was a very great Viking sword maker and he [an archaeoligist] finds some of his pieces. But something was puzzling to archaeologists, because there were fragments of them. And they did some metallurgic analysis. And the discovered that somebody, somewhere, had been forging this swordsmith’s work. And they had produced a marvelous cutting edge with the steel that they produced, but it was just too hard. The real stuff was forged from ore brought all the way from Afghanistan—would you believe? … Imagine, you spend a fortune buying this legendary swordsmith’s work and the first time your in battle, you smite your enemies sword, and your axe shrivels up into a pile of little shards. You think Oh, dear. And the other guy looks at you and smiles and come toward you.”
The film explores both European and Asian historic swordplay and offers an in-depth look at the fascinating world of stage combat on the silver screen. Mr. Rhys-Davies narrates and the film features Viggo Morensen (History of Violence) and Karl Urban (JJ Abram’s Star Trek). It also stars Richard Taylor, John Howe, John Waller and more. Look for RTB in stores such as Barnes and Noble and as featured on the Main Movies page of Apple iTunes! Soundtack available on Lakeshore Records.