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REVIEW | Bad Robot Capsules #2

12 Mar 2018

Bruce Willis underacts, Jack Palance overacts (twice), Angelina Jolie plays a cyber-hooker and suicidal robots rip-off Star Wars. More bitesize bad robot reviews.

 

 

 

 

 

Cyborg Cop

 

1993 | USA | 95m

 

Director: Sam Firstenberg

Starring: David Bradley, John Rhys-Davies, Todd Jensen 

 

“He's not dead, you brainless syphilitic idiot! He is life perfected. I have perfected the art of life itself!”

 

Sinister types are turning soldiers into cyborgs and selling them to even more sinister types.

 

Sam Firstenberg stepped blinking into the sunlight after a decade toiling in the Cannon Pictures schlock mine with this rudimentary sci-fi actioner. It sees David Bradley's government agent Jack Ryan (not that one) investigating his soldier brother's mysterious disappearance, and discovering a truth too unpleasant for a fun B-movie. Not without its highlights (most of which involve John Rhys-Davies hamming his shit up to 11 as the villainous Kessel), but hardly essential viewing.

 

5/10

 

 

 

 

Vice

 

2015 | USA | 96m

 

Director: Brian A. Miller

Starring: Thomas Jane, Bruce Willis, Ambyr Childers 

 

“You make me gonna cry.”

 

A synthetic human 'living' in a Westworld-style theme park becomes self-aware and breaks out, etc. 

 

Bruce Willis takes sleepwalking through a movie to new heights, Thomas Jane is a badass and everything else is just as unsurprising. As far as I can remember. Completely pointless.

 

 

 

 

2/10

 

 

 

 

The Shape of Things to Come

 

1979 | Canada | 94m

 

Director: George McCowan

Starring: Jack Palance, Carol Lynley, Barry Morse 

 

“I'm going to take a look at this suicide robot.”

 

In the distant future mankind has fled a poisonous Earth and settled on the moon, but our newfound peace is threatened by a tyrannical psychopath and his robot army. Just like in the original H.G. Wells novel.

 

An adaptation so loose it's become detached. Old men argue earnestly and cardboard robots stumble around a cave, leaving it all feeling a bit like 1970s Dr Who. Only with Jack Palance's disembodied spectral head floating about in a field. Which is probably the best thing about it.

 

 

5/10

 

 

 

 

Omega Doom

 

1996 | USA | 84m

 

Director: Albert Pyun

Starring: Rutger Hauer, Shannon Whirry, Norbert Weisser 

 

“Don't confuse me with logic!”

 

In the future, mankind is something or other and robots have taken over. Then Yojimbo.

 

If you want to learn about cinema, watch a bad movie based on the same screenplay as a great one. Rutger Hauer hits rock bottom because Albert Pyun thought he knew better than Akira Kurosawa. It could have been interesting (how did these various ragtag gangs of robots end up in this town?), but they forgot to write a script and the budget lumbers us with a tiny set and underwhelming action sequences. Quite awful, in its own little way.

 

 

3/10

 

 

 

 

Cyborg 2: Glass Shadow 

 

1996 | USA | 87m

 

Director: Michael Schroeder

Starring: Elias Koteas, Angelina Jolie, Jack Palance 

 

“If you want to dine with the devil, you need a long spoon.”

 

Sex robots and Billy Drago compete to be the silliest thing on screen for 90 minutes. Then Jack Palance turns up. Again.

 

A decent cast (lead by Elias Koteas and a young Angelina Jolie) are given really stupid things to say (“every time she screws somebody she's going to explode”) as they trudge through a plot that makes less sense than a drunk Billy Drago. It looks like there was a reasonable budget but the extent to which nobody gave a fuck is palpable.

 

 

5/10

 

 

 

 

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