GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords
|GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords|
The US theatrical poster
|Directed by||Ray Patterson|
|Produced by||Kay Wright|
|Written by||Jeff Segal|
|Distributed by||Clubhouse Pictures (US)|
|March 21, 1986|
GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords is an American animated film based on the Gobots toy and TV franchise. This movie was produced by Hanna-Barbera (the same company responsible for the Challenge of the GoBots series) and released to theaters in 1986 by Clubhouse Pictures. It was also the last film released by Clubhouse Pictures. It featured the first appearance of the Rock Lords who were given their own toyline after the movie. These new characters featured the guest voices of Margot Kidder, Telly Savalas and Roddy McDowall. The TV series regulars all reprised their usual roles (though Arthur Bughardt played Cop-Tur, as he had in several late TV episodes, following the passing of Bob Holt). Since then, Hanna-Barbera's successor company Cartoon Network Studios and Tonka's parent company Hasbro later worked on the production in Transformers: Animated (due to the first Gobots's companion franchise).
The Guardian Gobots are continuing their work on rebuilding their home planet of Gobotron when a mysterious ship crashes on the planet. Leader-1, Turbo and Scooter investigate, and find it to be occupied by a pair of transforming rocks - Solitaire and her valet Nugget. They have come seeking the Guardians' help to save their planet from the evil Rock Lord Magmar, who is killing the other Rock Lords in order to take their power sceptres. He places these in a machine designed to channel all their power into his own sceptre. The Guardians agree to help, but the conversation is spied upon by the Renegade Fitor. Gobotron is soon attacked by the Renegade fleet, and Cy-Kill and a team of Renegades capture Solitaire, Small Foot, Nick and A.J. With Nugget as their guide, Leader-1, Turbo and Matt set off on a rescue mission. Back on Quartex, the only obstacle facing Magmar is Boulder's group of Rock Lords, who set off to draw Magmar into battle.
Meanwhile, Cy-Kill attempts to get information out of Solitaire, and despite her best efforts manages to link up with Magmar and strike an alliance, turning the battle against Boulder. The good Rock Lords flee, and after their defeat at the hands of the Renegades are initially very skeptical about the Guardians' intentions when they land on Quartex. However, they too form an alliance, and march on Magmar's headquarters. However, when they get there Magmar is able to take Boulder's sceptre from him, and activate the machine. Cy-Kill betrays Magmar, taking the weapon for himself, but is defeated by Leader-1, and the power is dissipated. The Renegade prisoners are released, and the Gobots return to Gobotron.
- Michael Bell - Granite, Narligator, Slimestone
- Foster Brooks - Fossil Lord, Stoneheart
- Arthur Burghardt - Turbo, Cop-Tur, Talc
- Ken Hudson Campbell - Vanguard
- Philip Lewis Clarke - Crackpot, Herr Fiend, Tork
- Peter Cullen - Pincher, Stones, Tombstone
- Ike Eisenmann - Nick Burns
- Bernard Erhard - Cy-Kill
- Dick Gautier - Brimstone, Bugsie, Klaws, Rock Narlie
- Darryl Hickman - Hornet, Marbles
- Margot Kidder - Solitaire
- Marilyn Lightstone - Crasher
- Roddy McDowall - Nugget
- Michael Nouri - Boulder
- Morgan Paull - Matt Hunter
- Lou Richards - Leader-1
- Telly Savalas - Magmar
- Leslie Speights - A.J. Foster
- B.J. Ward - Small Foot
- Kelly Ward - Fitor
- Kirby Ward - Heat Seeker
- Frank Welker - Scooter, Narliphant, Pulver-Eyes, Rest-Q, Sticks, Zeemon
- Gordon Hunt - Recording Director
Box office and critical response
The film performed poorly, pulling in about $US1.5 million domestically. When released in Australia (as Machine Men: Battle of the Rock Lords, to tie in with the line's name in that territory), only a few independent cinemas carried the film, rather than the major chains. Several critics (Leonard Maltin amongst them) have suggested that The Transformers: The Movie was made to "cash in" on the release of the film. While Battle of the Rock Lords was released six months before Transformers, the latter film had been in production for the better part of two years, well before Battle of the Rock Lords began production.
Home media releases
The film has been released on VHS in America, the UK and Australia amongst others locales. It has been shown recently in 2010 on HDNet Movies.
- Going, Going, Gobots by Matt Carara, Toyfare Magazine #123, November 2007, page 80-82
- Holden, Stephen (1986-03-22). "FILM: 'GoBots,' A TV SPINOFF". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-09-06.
- Solomon, Charles (1986-03-21). "3 Animated Films: Good, Bad, Ugly". LA Times. Retrieved 2010-09-06.