Cast: Michael Pare, Billy Drago, Walker Brandt
At one point in Solar Force, the close
[Grunts of combat] as two of the characters get into a struggle.
I think that would be a better title for this movie, since the movie is
more concerned with fighting than presenting logic, or a script
enough to fit a feature-length running time. Still, the present title
a lot better than the original title (Lunar Cop) because
only about five minutes of this Road Warrior clone
take place on the moon!
Those bits of silliness are just the tip of the amount
material found in Solar Force, a movie directed by Boaz
who is more well known for his youth-oriented sex comedies. So it's odd
that he would be chosen to direct something completely unlike his
work, and it's inevitable that he seems to be out of his league here.
just because of the completely different genre, but because of the
he was saddled with. Take the opening of the movie, where we are taken
to an outside view of a lunar base in the year 2050. The base is
a model placed on some kind of table covered with sand, with a photo
of space behind it. The interior of the moon base isn't that much
with the space uniforms of the inhabitants and the set design looking
it was designed by the people who did the same tasks on the old Star
Trek show, including those good old sliding doors obviously pulled
by hidden stagehands.
The set design actually becomes one of the lesser
problems in the movie
quickly, because the story then starts. We learn that it's been 27
since the "Big Burn", which seems to have been when the ozone layer
away, drying up the world. Um, the ozone layer may be fading, but I
think any conditions would make it disappear overnight. Anyway, the
few live on the moon, while the few remaining people on earth live in
conditions. The space station scientists have just completed the
a formula that will fix the atmosphere. But shortly afterwards, a
group called "The Extremists" strike, and though lunar cop Joe Brody
blows a lot of them away, they still manage to send the formula to
Okay, now how could a terrorist group - which is indicated to have been
there for a while - manage to stay hidden on a relatively small space
How did they get weapons smuggled in from earth? For that matter, how
they able to send the formula to Earth - Federal Express?
Brody is brought into a meeting by his chief, and is
told, "We want
you to go down and bring it back." "I understand, Chief," he says.
luck, Brody." are the words of advice he then gets. Immediately he gets
onto a spaceship and flies down to earth with another blurred
of a spacescape in the background. We next see a shot of the desert on
Earth, and a caption helpfully tells us, "The Earth". We next see Brody
riding a motorcycle - huh? How did he get a motorcycle? For that
how did he know where to land his spaceship in order to find the
It doesn't seem to matter, because that part of the plot is largely
for the next while. That's because Brody bumps into a pretty woman
Thora while she is being prepared for rape by Kay (a tired looking
Drago), the sunburned and slobbering leader of "The Rough Boys", a
gang in the area. After saving her and driving off Kay, Brody seems to
forget his mission and concentrates on helping her fellow villagers
themselves against the gang while romancing her.
Maybe had this change in plot (which takes up most of
the rest of the
movie) been entertaining, I wouldn't have minded so much about the
being forgotten, but it all turns out to be an entire waste of time
this point until when the Amaranth is remembered again. This part of
movie goes something like this: Kay sends his idiot second-in-command (why
would anyone employ such an obvious idiot to be his second-in-command?
For that matter, why do evil leaders like this always employ
relief baddies as their second-in-commands?) to invade the village, and
are fought off by the villagers with the help of Brody. Brody and the
prepare for the next invasion by Kay and the remaining bikers. There's
a big invasion, and at the end Brody kills Kay. Then the matter about
Amaranth is brought up again. All of this takes up about half
the movie. And for what? It doesn't affect the plot in any real way; if
this entire section was deleted and maybe a few lines rewritten, there
would be no noticeable gap in the story (what there is) The rest of the
movie is a rip-off of the two Terminator movies, as an
cyborg is sent down to finish the job Brody now refuses to do.
The middle of the movie is just an excuse to pump in
more action scenes,
nothing more. And they aren't great action scenes anyway. The only good
parts are when we see motorcycles flying into the air in slow motion;
cool the first few times, but seeing it over and over quickly becomes
Speaking of visuals, the cinematography is very good, and the desert
in Namibia) looks cool. The script has one or two twists in it, but
eyes might already be glazed over from being numbed by the sea of utter
stupidity the movie offers in just about every aspect. Numerous
came to mind as I was watching this movie, including:
- Is screenwriter Terrence Pare related to Michael Pare?
(If yes, that
would explain how this movie got made.)
- Has Michael Pare ever been in a movie where he hasn't
worn a black
vest (or shirt)?
- If the village is under attack by the Rough Boys all
the time, and
the villagers are lousy in combat, how come the village still exists?
how come they leave the front gates wide open so that the bikers can
in at any time?
- Why don't the villagers live in the numerous abandoned
still must be around, instead of making their own homemade village in
middle of nowhere, and away from supplies?
- If the villagers have western accents, how come their
- If it can't rain, how are the villagers still getting
well water after
27 years? (Must be a big underground reservoir that hasn't completely
out to sea yet.)
- The Rough Boys' hideout looks suspiciously like a set
Cyborg. Is this an unofficial sequel?
- How can Brody shoot speeding bikers off their bikes
from a distance
with a sawed-off shotgun?
- Did Davidson think it was really necessary to imitate Home
painful antics in one scene with a boy and an evil biker, complete with
nyah-nyah sounding music?
- Speaking of music, why does the score keep changing
- How did that evil cyborg bury himself and his
motorbike under the
ground, and manage to pop out and fly high into the air?
- How come the explosions the cyborg go through slap on
burn makeup on his face, but don't affect his clothing?
- Why am I still talking about this movie?
Also reviewed at: Cold Fusion
* With a name like that, I
hope Mr. Davidson
spent all of his childhood in Israel, and not in any English-speaking
Check for availability on Amazon (VHS)
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See also: Omega Doom, Spoiler, Terminal Justice