I Saw a Film!

If you’re a Rutger Hauer completist then you’ll need to immerse in this poorly made artifact. Robots rule a post-apocalyptic world (we kind of need another term for this. Post-apocalypse is so overused at this point it may as well mean “movie”). The world is grim, and bombed out. There’re apparently no humans left. It’s just whirring gyros with every robot step. Whirr-whirr-whirr-whirr, it’s an unfortunate choice, we get tired of the robot walking really fast. The robots however, are quite concerned about a human uprising. And therein seems to lie the big point of the tale, not a robot uprising, sir, no. A human uprising! See? Big switcheroo there.

The special effects are Red Dwarf bad. One humorous robot who keeps losing his head is cracking jokes. While obviously meant as a sort of relief, comic or painful, we’re wondering what it takes to actually kill these machines off. There is a war going on between two rival factions, and Yojimbo-like Hauer’s character enters the fray to play them off each other for a stash of weapons. It seems at least. I can’t really tell. The sequences are mostly just shooting and Hauer looking icy. He’s very good at wearing black trench coats and looking icy. Maybe there was actually no one better than him at it. There is a scary tall black robot man with powerfully blazing blue eyes. He looks pretty amazing too. They let him just lead the film with his glare.

A turning point in the film comes when one of the lovely female robots (there are a number of these that seem like refugees from a Robert Palmer video) gets shot and sits down waiting for her “death”. Hauer’s character offers to take her head off, Japanese seppuku style (odd because we watch another of these androids survive regular decapitation), but she waves him off. She wants to watch a sunrise. These artificial humans have a bit of death, something like Blade Runner (a comparison we’d make probably even if Hauer wasn’t here). Experience seems to bolster their appreciation of life. Imagine your Roomba suddenly complimenting your shoes or something.

This is running freebee on Prime (usa) and is typical for Hauer projects. It’s a bit of a shame as he was quite special and watching him kind of peter out before he got scooped up and rehabilitated by a Terrantino or a del Toro for an unforgettable late career appreciation, would make all these Z-grade black-leather escapades worth it.

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