Dragonslayer (1981): Matthew Robbins’ Oscar Nominee

This Oscar nominated special-effects medieval adventure shows the attempts of a young sorcerer’s apprentice to defeat a vicious dragon and save a  young maiden.

Peter MacNicol stars as the young Galen, an aspiring magician under the tutelage of Ulrich (Ralph Richardson).

When a village asks for their help to prevent its leader from sacrificing young virgins, the two set out for battle, becoming even more determined when a courageous princess offers to sacrifice herself.

Ulrich’s age and failing abilities force Galen to take the lead in the conflict, where he must prove himself under fire.

The mythic story is told in a conventional way, ending in a spectacular battle against the beast, which might have been too violent for children and adolescents.

Oscar Nominations: 2

Original Score: Alex North

Visual Effects: Dennis Muren, Phil Tippett, Ken Ralston, Brian Johnson

Oscar Awards: None


Oscar Context:

The winner of the Score Oscar was Vangelis for “Chariots of Fire.”

Spielberg’s “Raiders of the Lost Ark” won the Special Effects Oscar.




Running time: 108 Minutes.

Directed By: Matthew Robbins

Written By: Hal Barwood and Matthew Robbins

DVD: October 21, 2003