Steel Dawn is an action film from the year 1987.
Set in a post-apocalyptic Desert Punk Scavenger World, the movie follows a quiet man named Nomad (Patrick Swayze), who on his travels runs on to Cord, one of his war buddies. Cord tells him he has been appointed to be the "peacemaker" to the town of Median. They are suddenly attacked by Sho and his cronies, who have been hired by Damnil to make sure that he is the only commanding presence in the area.
Cord is killed, and Nomad vows for revenge. He then sets out for Median, where he meets Determined Homesteader Kasha and her son Jux. As he becomes closer and closer to them, the day of reckoning closes in...
And if the summary doesn't make it clear, this film rips its plot from the classic western Shane.
Also not a sequel to Red Dawn (1984), despite Patrick Swayze starring in both films. If anything, it's more like Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior meets Shane, to the point of sharing the former film's composer Brian May (not to be confused with the guitarist from Queen).
This film contains the examples of:
- But Now I Must Go: The ending.
- The Dragon: Sho.
- Drowning My Sorrows: Tark hits the bottle when he starts to be overshadowed by Nomad.
- Dual Wielding: Sho fights with two daggers.
- Duel to the Death: The final showdown between Nomad and Sho.
- '80s Hair: Mullets are everywhere.
- Everything's Better with Spinning: Nomad's swordfighting style includes a lot of spinning.
- Evil Counterpart: Nomad vs Sho. Both are wanderers, highly skilled fighters, and heavily implied both came from military backgrounds. However, Sho is a killer assassin working for The Big Bad, while Nomad fights to protect others.
- Faceless Goons: The "Half-Men" who attack Nomad in the opening.
- Hidden Weapons: Sho has a hidden knee-dagger for tighter spots in battle. Nomad has a knife hidden in his boot.
- Lawful Evil: Sho. Though he is an assassin-for-hire, he made sure his duels with Nomad were on even grounds. He also bows in respect before their second duel.
- Leave Him to Me: Sho doesn't like it when others interfere with his fights.
- Let's Fight Like Gentlemen: Sho wants to fight fairly - as fair as fighting in a post-apocalyptic desert, that is.
- Lock-and-Load Montage: Shown when Nomad prepares himself for the showdown with Sho and Damnil.
- Percussive Prevention: Kasha locks Nomad up to prevent him fighting Damnil.
- Polite Villains, Rude Heroes: Damnil and Sho are very well spoken, especially Sho. Nomad however, is blunt and crass.
- Professional Killer: Sho tells Nomad, "We all have to make a living."
- The Quiet One: Nomad.
- Viking Funeral: Nomad burns Cord's body in a funeral pyre.
- We Can Rule Together: Damnil offers Nomad to work for him and become his Dragon. Naturally, he turns him down.
- Worthy Opponent: Both Sho and Nomad see each other as this; Sho makes sure Nomad fights him armed, and they bow in respect before their second duel.