May 18, 2017
Labyrinth (1986) (part 3 of 4)
Meanwhile, Jareth looks in on Sarah’s progress using one of his crystal balls. He’s happy that Sarah is now stuck in the “oubliette”, but annoyed that she even got this far. Still, he’s got an ace up his sleeve—Hoggle is being sent down to “rescue” Sarah from the oubliette, by sending her right back to the beginning.
Except, yeah… not really. Sarah offers Hoggle her plastic bracelet, and he takes it in exchange for guiding her as far into the labyrinth as he can go. Hoggle makes a magic door by propping a dusty, unhinged door against the stone wall, and off they go to Easter Island!
These stone guys caution them to beware, and Hoggle tells them to STFU because they’re not scared. They amble down the hallway, at the end of which is a weird, bird-like beggar guy that reveals himself to be Jareth in disguise.
Jareth reprimands Hoggle for not double-crossing Sarah soon enough, and then threatens to send him to the Bog of Eternal Stench. He also reduces Sarah’s remaining time by a couple of hours, which I think is pretty crappy, but as Jareth points out, life isn’t fair.
I beg to differ. Life isn’t unfair—it’s just other people’s actions that makes things suck. But hey, I can forgive Jareth almost anything, as long as he promises to sing and dance some more. It’s kind of how I feel about those kids on Glee.
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Jareth sends “the Cleaner” after Hoggle and Sarah. The Cleaner is a kind of weird meat-grinder thing that chases them down the hallway.
They manage to duck off into a side corridor and let the Cleaner pass, only to find out that it’s just a spinny-knife-thing powered by some goblins.
Sarah and Hoggle climb up a ladder and emerge in a very different part of the labyrinth, one that looks more like a hedge maze. Hoggle’s about to leave Sarah high and dry, but then she steals his stash of jewels and forces him to come along with her.
Not exactly smart, but hey, whatever. I guess he’s her best hope at this point, despite the fact that he isn’t trustworthy at all.
A minute later, they come upon an old man with a sarcastic, talking bird on his head. She asks him how to get to the center of the labyrinth, and in between telling the bird to be quiet, the old man gives this sage bit of advice: “Quite often, it seems like we’re not getting anywhere, when, in fact, we are.”
Sounds a lot like how I feel about my writing career.
The old guy falls asleep, and Sarah and Hoggle wander through the hedges, narrowly avoiding a mounted goblin soldier. Suddenly, a savage roar fills the air, and Hoggle runs off and leaves Sarah to fend for herself, all the while crying, “Hoggle is Hoggle’s friend!” Hee hee.
Sarah makes her way to the source of the ruckus: a group of goblin soldiers are torturing a hog-tied monster. Sarah somehow scares the goblins away by throwing rocks at them. Hey, nobody ever said goblins were clever.
So now we’ve got a new friend. Yay! I knew we needed some muscle here.
Cut back to Hoggle, who’s wandering nearby, muttering to himself. Basically, he doesn’t think Sarah will get through the labyrinth. No big surprise there.
Back to Sarah and the big monster, named Ludo, as they suddenly notice two doors, each bearing ornamental, face-shaped door knockers. Because this a Jim Henson movie, the door knockers are sentient and kind of kooky.
Eventually, Sarah knocks on one of the doors and enters a sparkly, mysterious forest. We know it’s mysterious, because the music gets kind of dark and downbeat.
Oh, and the fact that Ludo soon falls into a hidden pit kind of clues us in, too.
So Sarah’s alone again, and kind of freaked out. She calls for help, and nearby, Hoggle begins to run toward the sound of her voice.
Unfortch, Jareth appears just in time to threaten Hoggle again. He also remarks how impossible it would be for a lovely girl like Sarah to befriend a nasty little dude like Hoggle. Still, he sends Hoggle back to Sarah bearing a poisoned peach.
As Hoggle leaves, Jareth makes a promise: if Sarah ever kisses Hoggle, Jareth will make Hoggle a prince. Not a bad deal, except he’d be prince of the Land of Stench. If I were Hoggle, I’d try to farm the land out as a toxic waste dump or something, but hey, he’s got a decent racket in the fairy killing market, so maybe he’s doing okay financially.
In another part of the forest, Sarah is suddenly surrounded by these creepy orange freaks…
Yuck. They do a song and dance that scared me as a little girl and still scares me today, after which they try to rip Sarah’s head off so they can toss it around like a soccer ball. She runs away, but they corner her against a wall.
Luckily, Hoggle appears just in time to throw down a rope for Sarah to climb. She’s so grateful for the help that she can’t help but throw her arms around him and give him a nice, big kiss on the cheek. Awww… Not. A trapdoor comes undone underneath them, and they slide down to the Bog of Eternal Stench.
I’m just wondering how many of these doors they have in the labyrinth. There should be at least two, since we find that Ludo has landed in the Bog, too.
The Bog is sort of awesomely gross. There’s lots of murky water and dreary-looking plants. It’s kind of like Yoda’s hideout in Empire Strikes Back, but with more farting sounds.
As Sarah, Ludo, and Hoggle start to cross a bridge on the way out of the Bog, a cute little fox knight stops them. He declares that no one shall pass this way without his permission.
I freaking love Sir Didymus. He’s like, two feet tall, but he tries to kick Ludo’s butt anyway. It doesn’t exactly work out, but Didymus takes it well, and declares that Ludo is now his sacred brother.
He agrees to let the gang cross the bridge (after they obtain his permission, of course). However, the bridge is in some disrepair, which is not that surprising, since there are so many other trapdoors and things to maintain that the staff must be totally backed up. Luckily, Ludo sings a special song and summons some rocks so that Sarah can step across the water instead.
Didymus decides to come along, riding atop his loyal steed, Ambrosious—also known as Sarah’s dog, Merlin, back in the real world.
Hoggle almost tosses the poisoned peach into the Bog, but Jareth’s booming voice warns him not to do that. Soon enough, Sarah mentions being hungry, so Hoggle reluctantly offers her the peach. She takes one bite and remarks, “Everything’s dancing…”
Back at the castle, Jareth sends out three magical crystal balls to float through the air and hypnotize Sarah. Our girl soon finds herself at a fancy dress party, in the middle of the most luxurious k-hole anyone’s ever experienced!
According to the production documentary, this is supposed to be a ball held by the beautiful human aristocrats, who are dressed up as ugly goblins. I guess it’s pretty glam, especially with David Bowie wandering around, singing another awesome song as he sweeps Sarah onto the dancefloor.
But our girl isn’t fooled for long. She breaks out of Jareth’s grip and busts the crystal wall open with a well-thrown chair.
I’ve done similar things to get out of boring parties, so this is cool with me.