The other guest-star villains are the Penguin (Danny De Vito) and Catwoman ( Michelle Pfeiffer ).
Nielsen commands a spacecraft that lands on a remote planet. It is inhabited by Professor Mobius (Walter Pidgeon ) and his daughter, Anne Francis .
The expedition includes David Felix Leiter Hedison ( ) and a token red-head babe. They discover the plateau has human inhabitants when they discover a mega-babe Indian girl in a skimpy animal-skin dress.
The USA has become a Fascist, Politically Correct hell-hole. The President's daughter, Utopia stole the black box that controls a super-weapon, and escaped to Los Angeles. LA is now an island, ever since the Big One that left most of California underwater.
LA is now ruled by a Guevera/Castro type called Cuervo Jones, and like New York in the previous film it is an anarchic place. This is part of the irony of the new film; it is the same as the original, only reversed. In the original Plissken broke into a prison to free a prisoner - in the sequel he leaves a fascist state and enters a free one in order to execute a fugitive.
The evil USA Police, led by Stacey Keach and Michelle Phillips , dose our anti-hero with a virus that will kill him within hours. The only way he can get the antidote is - you guessed it!
Typical of big-budget sequels, this film is filled with cameos. Valeria Golino pops up to call the city a Dark Paradise. Bruce Campbell ( Lois & Clark, Hercules ) is the Surgeon General of Beverly Hills, who wants to cut Plissken up and use him for spare-part surgery. Steve Buscemi takes the Ernest Borgnine role as helpful local. Peter Fonda pops up as a surfer.
Of course, as is always the case at one stage the protagonist gets captured. In the original film, Plissken had to duel a giant with spiked baseball bats. In the new film, all he has to do is play bloody netball - err, basketball. It is still a girl's game. This reviewer played softball - err, baseball. Which sucked too, but what can you say? Bring back duels with spiked baseball bats, that is this reviewer's opinion.
There are other differences. The Harry Dean Stanton type character is played by Pam Grier . Instead of escaping in a taxi they use hang-gliders and a Helicopter Gunship. And the final double-cross? Bigger, flashier and quite impressive. If only the rest of the film was not so OTT, it might have lived up to the original concept.
Baldwin's friend and fellow convict joins the sand pirates, a gang of cut-throats who loot and pillage at every opportunity. He beds down with the female leader (who appears based on Tina Turner's character in Beyond Thunderdome ) and eventually the two friends have to fight it out.
Arnold Schwartzenegger stars in a role originally cast for Matthew Broderick ( Godzilla, Inspector Gadget ). Construction worker Doug Quaid goes to Rekall, a memory-changing company, to have a Secret Agent fantasy holiday implanted in his memory. However, they discover that his memory had already been changed and he really was a Secret Agent! Or was he? Was it all a dream?
He suddenly finds himself on the run from an army of faceless men - and he himself appears to have highly-honed and lethal skills. With Arnie, Quaid is a believable killing machine; with Broderick the character would have been a fish out of water, and the movie would have been more thriller than action-adventure.
Sharon Stone is Quaid's wife - but from the very first scene we are suspicious of her. This reviewer recalls an interview with a British actor who claimed he had been offered a role where he would get to kiss Sharon Stone and have a fist-fight with Arnold Schwartzenegger. The actor's name has faded from memory, and small wonder because the silly fool turned the part down and it went to Michael Ironside ( Scanners, Seaquest ) instead.
Ironside's character, Richter, is sartorially identical to Ham Tyler, his character in V . Obviously not promoted for his marksmanship, he relies on his machine-pistol (an adapted Ingram) to spray the area with bullets while completely missing the hero.
Ronny Cox ( Robocop ) is Cohaagen, the arch-villain. Rachel Ticotin is Quaid's love-interest on Mars. Roy Brocksmith is the head of Rekall, Debbie Lee Carrington (an Ewok in Return of the Jedi) is a dwarf hooker, and Marshall Bell is one of the rebels.
The action scenes on Mars are scarred by the unbelievable concept that a group of highly-trained soldiers could get taken on by a bar full of hookers and gutter-trash.
So, was it a dream? The script is deliberately very ambiguous.
The hero from the previous film is hit with flashes of energy when Graham's experiments take place. Once the past-changing event itself takes place, the hero is thrust into a parallel world - a Nazi-ruled USA, a 1984 scenario with barcodes in everyone's wrist and cinema screens on the street walls which broadcast things like citizen thought for the day. The resistance is led by token babe Marjean Holden .
The truth? The USA is ALREADY ruled by its military-industrial complex. As for fascism, what about the War on Drugs?
The end? The hero uses some ruthless tactics to defeat his enemy. And do you really think a Hollywood movie would have a downbeat ending? Okay, they might - but would they let the Nazis win?
While the first film featured a crew making a movie, the new version is about some people exploring for oil. This helps to further date the film to the 1970s - the oil crisis was big news then, but not even a memory now. The other modernised feature is the ending, which features helicopter gunships. Their tactics are anachronistic: they should stay well back and take advantage of the fact that their gatling guns have a HUGE range.
The only one who can stop him are a ragged band of seven magnificent space-gun slingers.
The child is rescued by a passing sell-sword, and raised to become Marc Singer. The mercenary names him Dar, and teaches him how to sword-fight. He also has a throwing weapon that seems a cross between a hatchet and a frisbee.
The barbarians arrive at the village, led by Rip Torn, and burn it to the ground. Dar is the sole survivor - the bastards even kill his dog - and sets out to find his destiny.
Dar has developed a telepathic link with animals, and befriends certain creatures as he quests to regain his rightful heritage. His animal friends include a hawk, a pair of kleptomaniac ferrets and a black tiger. He also meets Tanya Roberts (fresh from Charlie's Angels), who is the film's babe factor.
The film's cinematography is quite impressive. The music, OTOH, does not compare to the Wagnerian chords of Excalibur and Conan the Barbarian - it is merely a lacklustre version of the Battlestar Galactica theme tune.
Singer's earlier roles included a guest appearance in the Planet of the Apes TV show, and a supporting role in Burt Lancaster movie Go Tell The Spartans. He is most famous for his role in V , and also starred in SF film Watchers II . He is also star of Beastmaster II, which came out about a decade after the original. The sequel transports Dar to 1990s Los Angeles, and pairs him with a Valley Girl played by Kari woo-woo Wuhrer.
For some reason, the State University has seen fit to position a lot of valuable seismograph equipment (and a Grad student - the babelicious Reba McIntyre ) in the middle of the desert, in case of an earthquake or volcanic erruption. And however unexpected, there actually are some readings ...
The handymen are on their way out of the valley for good, when they discover that something is mysteriously killing off the residents and eating their sheep and vehicles.
The survivalist couple survive rather well, which is unusual for Hollywood.
Written and directed by Ron Underwood , this is a fun film that allows a couple of Hollywood's better supporting actors take the lead.
The cast is filled with familiar faces.
Corporate yuppie Miguel Ferrer ( Tales from the Crypt ) has Weller's body used to create Robocop, a cyborg police officer.
Robocop and his partner, Nancy Allen (Philadelphia Experiment), team up to take down the gangsters.
The best line is when a reporter asks Fahey, shortly after he has had a new arm attached to replace his severed one, Will this affect your sex life?
The Washington Characters.
The Las Vegas characters:
The third group of characters are a redneck family living in a trailer park. Joe Don Baker is Paw, Christina Applegate is the local slut and Lukas Haas ( ) is the black sheep of the family.
This is just cobbled together from a couple of episodes of the disasterous Battlestar Galactica spin-off, Galactica 1980 . Usually the second part is the cylon ship crashes on Earth one - this time it is the go back to 1944 and stop Dr Xavier from helping the Nazis story.
The climax is not violence-intensive, but rather of the let's all work together and get along variety. Which is certainly a nice break compared to the ass-kicking encouraged by the likes of Buffy.
The tales she tells include:
Two young boys go missing while walking home one night. Suspicion falls on James Mason ( ), an antiques dealer who has recently moved into the local mansion. One of the boys turns up, with a mysterious medical condition that the doctor can only diagnose as pernicious aenemia.
In the second half, the town has a virtual epidemic of pernicious aenemia. We also see the appearance of The Master - a Nosferatu-looking creature that was copied for Buffy and inspired the Thomas Ian Griffiths character in John Carpenter's Vampire$.
Kirsty Swanson is Buffy, a High School cheerleader in California, USA. She spends her days hanging out with mean girl Hilary Swank (who went on to be The Next Karate Kid and won an Academy Award for Boys Don't Cry) and nerdy girl Cassandra ( Natascha Gregson Wagner ). She also has a love interest - Pike (Luke Perry - Jeremiah ), who is rather reminiscent of Xander.
Buffy's life is turned upside down with the arrival of the Watcher (Donald Sutherland - Don't Look Now ). He tells her she is the Vampire Slayer, and must fight evil. Unfortunately this is too late for David Arquette ( Scream 3 ) and Seth Green ( My Stepmother Is An Alien ), who both end up as minion vamps. Paul Reubens, best known as Pee-Wee Herman, is the sidekick of the villainous Master Vampire (Rutger Hauer - Blade Runner ).
Buffy in the TV show is relatively smart and witty; here she is just a slutty bimbo. OK, so there is no real difference - but in the movie these traits are exaggerated in extremis. The whole thing has been dumbed down and the comedy has been played up.
One scene is a reference to Salem's Lot - Arquette appears at Perry's window and begs to be let in. Of course, writer Joss Whedon decrees that vampires can't get in if you don't invite them - no doubt a reference to The Lost Boys , which starred Donald Sutherland's son Kiefer.
Swanson's Buffy comes off as a lot more mature than Gellar - but on the other hand, while Swanson displays acrobatic talent in keeping with the cheerleader role we must not forget that Gellar is a Brown Belt in Tae Kwan Do!
All except True have had other successful SF films. Campbell's performance is by far the best in the film - subtle yet entirely convincing.
Skeet Ulrich here plays the BF of Tunney and Balk - he also played Campbell's BF in the overrated Scream a year later.
Cliff deYoung is Tunney's screen father, a role typical to his filmography of supporting roles of countless TV shows.
This film owes a debt to Witches of Eastwick , which is even acknowledged in Ulrich's reference to the babes as the Bitches of Eastwick. In turn the film seems to have inspired the terrible TV show Charmed - yes, the reason the great theme tune to Aaron Spelling's rubbish seems so out-of-place is that it is stolen from this film!
The boy discovers that the hotel is host to a convention of Witches, including Anjelica Houston and Jane Horrocks . They capture him and turn into a mouse - he meets his own pet mice, who are very patriotically called William and Mary!
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