Halloween Horrors 50 for 31:Hands of Steel

October 19, 2011 at 3:03 am Leave a comment

Finally, I have found a movie in this set that I think is awesome.  I do question why an Italian action movie is included in the Pure Terror box set. What this movie is, at its core, it’s an Italian version of Terminator meets Over the Top with a few elements of Blade Runner thrown in for good measure.  I don’t think most people could appreciate this movie but I think it was great.

Paco Queruak is a cyborg assassin sent out by industrialist Turner, who is played by John Saxton. An environmentalist threatens John Saxton’s corporations with his oh so positive message of “You have no future.” So Paco is sent out to take care of this problem. Paco hesitates to finish the assassination and only injures the target with a punch to the chest. Paco escapes authorities in a car that I think they wanted to look like the Delorean from Back to the Future and  heads out into the acid rain waste land.

The FBI sends out a couple of agents to find out what exactly happened in this situation. Meanwhile, John Saxton sends out an assassin to find and destroy Paco before anyone can trace Paco to the corporation. So it’s a race against time to find Paco. For Paco’s part, he trades the not-Delorean for a crappy old Ford. He drives that until it runs out of gas and takes refuge in a seedy motel/bar/restaurant run by Linda.  From there the movie takes a turn in a completely different direction. See, around these parts, the biggest entertainment is truck drivers who arm wrestle each other. There are even pictures on the wall of past champions. The pictures, however, are actually pictures of pro wrestlers. Most notably Bruno Sammartino, Terry Funk, One Man Gang, and Hillbilly Jim. Yeah, I got excited by that.

So now we have The Terminator arm wrestling truck drivers. Paco runs afoul of Raul, the best arm wrestler who happens to be in the bar at that moment. Until Paco beats him which Raul takes personally.  So the next night, Raul brings in the local champion, a gignormous Bluto looking fella. But this is a gimmick match. The loser will have his arm trapped in a box with a cobra. Paco wins with ease but when the cobra is about to bite Bluto, Paco karate chops the box and cuts the cobra in half.

Meanwhile, we cut to the FBI and the assassins sent out by John Saxton. They are closing in on Paco’s trail. There is also a love story between Paco and Linda. He even confesses to her that he is a cyborg and attempted a political assassination. She forgives him because she has brought out his human side. Randomly, a female cyborg assassin and her biker boyfriend show up at the motel to rent a room for a couple of hours. Well, they use Linda to draw out Paco. Paco takes down the lady cyborg but it is clear that he has been found and needs to run. That’s when all hell breaks loose and we reach our stirring conclusion, which is 30 minutes or so of pure action. I won’t spoil all of it but there is a car chase, a lot of explosions, and John Saxton firing a laser gun that is literally bigger than he is.

I love this movie. I will admit, its not flawless. The acting is typical of what you might expect from Italian rip off movies. The dialogue is clunky and full of action movie one liners, no doubt written in Italian then awkwardly translated to English. Many of the criticism I have read call the movie cheap but I thought they did fairly well with the budget they had. They used a helicopter a lot which I know isn’t cheap. The cyborg implants looks out. Not Terminator good but good enough. Still, I thought there was a lot of good action. The movie moved along quickly and had some good action, even if it did take a very odd turn by mixing political assassinations, cyborgs, and trucker arm wrestling. I found the movie to be very entertain. I imagine I will be watching this one again and I’d say it made the $10 purchase of the Pure Terror box set well worth while.


Entry filed under: Action. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

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