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City of Solis Film Archive


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Films that provide great ideas for GMs.

We have listed a few of our favourite films that have inspired us in our games. Some of them may not be the best films ever made, but they have certain aspects that have influenced our gaming, so check them out if you can. To buy the films on DVD (or Video only in some cases) from Amazon, click on the relevant country flag.

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  • Lord of the Rings - need we say anything except AWESOME
      Buy the DVD
  • Gladiator - What can you say? A true epic, directed as only Ridley Scott could. Ollie Reed was a STAR! He will be sadly missed I am sure.
      Buy the DVD
  • Ben Hur - Great epic romp, sadly the chariot race is old hat now, but still a classic. If you have not seen this film, its a 'biblical' epic set in ancient Rome with some amazing gladiatorial sequences.
      Buy the DVD
  • Spartacus - I'm Spartacus, I'm Spartacus, I'm Spartacus..... The Trireme naval battle sequences are horrific and worth watching if you intend to run any sea-going campaign.
      Buy the DVD
  • Life of Brian - I'm Spartacus, No! I'm Spartacus, NO! I'm spartacus, and so's my wife.....
      Buy the DVD
  • Jason and the Golden Fleece - Stop motion Ray Harryhousen (sp?) at his best - look out for the forthcoming remake....
  • The Sindbad Films - Great stories, atmospherics and a barrel of fun too!
  • Conan the Barbarian - Classic Howard given a classic treatment, look out for the camel thumping scene. A must watch for anyone intending to set their games in Hyborea, the ancient world of Conan.
      Buy the DVD
  • Red Sonja - Arnie plays Conan with a different name. Great feel of R E Howards Hyperborea (a country in Hyborea), even if not directly stated.
  • Princess Bride - My name is Inegio Montoya, you kill' my father, prepare to die!...... Ideal viewing for 7th Sea players with much buckling of swash and shivering of timbers.
  • Captain Blood - Splice the mainbrace lads, prepare to board! Piratical theatrics at their best with Errol Flynn in this 1935 classic. Probably one of the best Pirate films ever made.
      Buy the Video
  • Willow - Has its moments of power and comedy, great for non too serious DMs. The Brownies are great!!!
  • Warlock - Underated classic with a great take on magic.
  • Oliver! the musical OK, you may scoff, but the scenes of Victorian London are some of the best in film. Ollie Reed steals the show as a really nasty Bill Sikes.
      Buy the DVD

In Association with

  • The Black Arrow. Another Ollie Reed classic, this time with Disney. Based on Robert Lous Stephensons novel of 15th Century English villainy. There is an amazing fight scene that lasts forever and traverses rooves, hay lofts, inns and taverns! If we remember rightly, it finishes with Ollie Reed drunk on the steps of the Palace!
  • The Prince and the Pauper. The medieval London portrayed is dark and dangerous, and Ollie Reed steals the show (again)!
  • Bram Stokers Dracula - Classicly dark and brooding, with great Cthulhu / VtM possibilities. The Castle is great and the characters are well acted, even if its not 'by the book'. I loved the Asylum scenes.
  • Alien - In space.......... This film set the standard for space thrillers. Nothing has ever come close since, especially the sequels. OK, so Aliens was good in a very different way, but....
  • Blade Runner - Every Traveller campaign has a city like LA as depicted in Bladerunner, and the spinners are standard issue to all traveller Games Masters. Masterpeice.
      Buy the DVD
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  • Apocalypse Now - Redux - Special Edition of this Vietnam masterpiece. A musthave DVD.
      Buy the DVD

  • Outland - Some nice ideas for near future gaming, a bit 'Bladerunneresque' with great character play from Sean Connery.
  • Brazil - Paranoia! the computer most certainly isnt your friend. 1984 meets the Paranoia! RPG.
  • 13th Warrior - Michael Critons interpretation of the Beowulf sagas of ancient Europe. It could have been written by R E Howard as it has all the hallmarks of a Conan film. Read the book too, its even better than the film!!!
      Buy the DVD
  • The Brotherhood of the Wolf. Lycanthropy, mud and martial arts in this stylish french language masterpiece. Great ideas for villains, good atmosphere and a pretty unbelievable but gripping plot. Set in late middle ages France.
      Buy the DVD
  • The Vikings - Set the standard for viking things ever after, with fantastic oar-running sequences. Great ideas for a dark-ages campaign.
      Buy the Video (UK) or DVD (US)
  • Highlander. Some superb medieval Scottish scenes fimed at Eileen Donan on Loch Linhe near Skye. The Clan are awesome and strike fear into the heart of the watcher. Great resource material for dark and dirty 'Medieval' roleplaying.
  • Snatch! - features Brad Pitt as a bare fist boxer - ideal inspiration for an Inish rogue, even if the film isnt exactly fantasy...!
  • Cutthroat Istand. - Terrible film but it does have a couple of absolute gems. A coach top fight through the streets and an awesome bar room brawl. Worth a cheap nights rental.
  • Excalibur! - A classic version of the Arthurian legend. OK, its over the top medieval / fantasy but its GREAT!!!!
      Buy the DVD
  • Monty Python - The Holy Grail. Sillyness abounds, but some great sets, plots and acting (no, its true!)
  • Red Planet - poor film with wooden acting but some great tech (and a good zero G sequence)
  • The Ninth Gate - how to summon the Devil badly! Quite predictable, but with some good ideas for Cthulhu games.
      Buy the DVD
  • Twelve Monkeys with outstanding performance from Brad Pitt as a psycho animal rights activist. Some great retro-future tech and a nice take on the problem of time travel.
  • The Fisher King. A Terry Gilliam film about Arthurian Myth set in 1980s New York (?) staring Robin Williams. Interesting and involving plot. Useful for modern day game ideas.
      Buy the Video (UK) or DVD (US)
  • Macbeth. The Roman Polanski version staring Martin Shaw is a dark and forboding tale full of drama and suspense. A great film.
      Buy the DVD

UK TV series (BBC, HTV, Carlton etc)

  • Sharpe - Sean Bean stars in this adaptation of the Sharpe Novels. Set in the Napoleonic wars, the series follows the exploits of the eponymous Captain Richard Sharpe as he carves through Napoleons Imperial Armies almost single handedly. Great script, great actors (especially Pete Postlethwait as Obediah Hawkswill - ooh what a nasty piece of work!) and superb source material
      Buy the DVDs (Boxed Set or double DVDs)
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel, staring Richard E Grant. Superb 7th Sea material! - two series now, get 'em both, me lad!
      Buy the DVD of series 1.
  • Gormenghast given the BBC treatment with Christopher Lee as a magnificent Flay!
      Buy the DVD of the BBC series.
  • Merlin, with a return to form (briefly) by Rutger Hauer.
      Buy the DVD of the BBC series
  • Tales of the Arabian Nights, all the flavour you could ever need to run a Middle Eastern Campaign. Another BBC adaptation.
  • The Lost World, has great cgi dinosaurs and Bob Hoskins (no, he is NOT one of the dinosaurs). BBC version.
  • Robin of Sherwood was a cult classic. Great acting by Little John, Will Scarlet and Sir Guy of Guisbourne (mediocre acting from most others).
  • Blakes 7. OK, so not exactly Star Trek standards, but some great plots, fab acting by Avon and Villa, and some great dodgy sets and continuity errors.
  • Blackadder. The first two series of this exceptional set provide a huge amount of reference material for Medieval games. Some great lines too! The last two series are not quite as useful, but hey, who cares! Great TV!
      Buy the DVD of the BBC series
  • Red Dwarf. A sci-fi comedy with so many plot lines, even the most jaded DM should find some inspiration somewhere.
      Buy the DVD of the BBC series


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