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This movie is mind boggling. I could probably go back through the film and try to pull out every insane thing that happens, but I'm too dumbfounded to try to be witty and smarmy about it. This movie had a budget, really, a lot of shit explodes every couple minutes, and I'm talking Die Hard style explosions, cops get slaughtered by the thousands in this movie, and it is extremely 'action-packed.' It really was quite an 'action movie.' That being said, and the fact that it was produced pretty well, nice locations, and okay special effects for the time it was made, even the editing of the action scenes was really pretty good. Michael Nouri does an excellent job as the corporate villain, and even Evan Lurie isn't really that bad in his role as crazed maniacal psychopathic criminal mastermind.

It does have a plot, and it also does have another layer of subtext, though not entirely sharply defined, this movie is just simply a strange artifact of weirdness. It has a standard action plot, there's nothing clever about the way things proceed, its the details. First of all, anyone who knows anything about computers, holograms, and technology will tell you that its 'science fiction' premise is beyond absurd, it is so utterly impossible and ridiculous, you'd think somebody would have mentioned that to the producers before they went ahead and tried to make a good movie out of it.

Joe Lara isn't really a good actor in this movie, but he gets by. There's so many things going on, and a few good performances by Nouri and other familiar faces, that it boggles the mind that this well produced film was built entirely on the premise that a person could be turned into a hologram to be 'shelved' in a 'prison' and stored as 'data.' Okay, somebody watched Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future. In that series, the villains 'digitized' people to be 'uploaded' and used in a super-computer called OVERMIND. The idea was they essentially were disintegrated by some sort of device, and re-integrated back inside a giant weird computer. Okay, we've seen it on Star Trek, the Energizer Teleporter. Its not entirely a new idea in science fiction, and we've seen people walking around as holograms in Quantum Leap, and even in fact 'getting stuck' as holograms, etc. Again, this isn't all that outlandish. But the idea here is that somebody didn't realize or something that once you show that the bodies of the incarcerated are in a morgue style chamber, what is the point of 'digitizing' their consciousness? To be honest some of these ideas are actually acceptable, at least in terms of science fiction, but the 'hologram' thing seriously needs an overhaul, and as a matter of fact, if I were the owners of this movie, I'd re-release it with a different title, hired back the actors, and re-dub some of the dialog referring to holographic transformation, call it something different like Digital Consciousness Replication or something, and then you have your property back in the world of marketability. Heck, we've seen Lawnmower Man, and they even did it in WILD PALMS, and ultimately, its just crazy enough and out there to be thought provoking. The rest of the movie does in fact work in a way, and is actually pretty entertaining. They put a lot of effort into this film, and it can be pretty funny, and very amusing. Seriously, whoever owns this property, find the original footage or any extra footage, it would only require a few small changes and a new title and I think this movie could be a marketable cult film. It really isn't all that bad at all, but in terms of a few science fiction realities, it boggles the mind that somebody thought you could turn somebody into a hologram, it almost seems as though they didn't understand what a hologram was. I can see the use of the "hologram man" later in the film, like Al Calavicci in Quantum Leap, he is invincible, can't be shot, etc, and this is most certainly a believable thing, but the premise in which people are "stored as holograms" is profoundly absurd, and ultimately only requires a change in terminology. You still have a decent movie here. That is what is bizarre.

I was really expecting this movie to be a total piece of crap in every way, like TC 2000. It even has a similar 'future political setting' but in this one, it has more dimensions to it, and villains who are enjoyably good. This is why this movie is astounding. The 'tech' in the movie leaves a lot to be desired, but the movie is actually more action-packed than Lethal Weapon. It does barrow or refer to Lethal Weapon, Demolition Man and others, but it has a kind of political commentary in it that is a bit interesting. If I was watching this movie, as a producer, or writer, just before it was released, I'd say, okay, you got something here, needs a few small very inexpensive changes, and I think this could all work. But it's just weird, a lot of it is absurdly funny too, and is operating in the realm of both satire and camp and metaphor, and some of the characters are just plain dumb--but funny, so it all adds up to a very bizarre movie experience. This is one for the books kids, that you have to see in order to understand, and believe. It kind of has somewhat of the tone of Southland Tales, it reminded me of that film from time to time, but isn't as dull, and has a lot more action. There are things that pop up in the movie that make up for when you're thinking, what the fuck am I watching, how stupid is this, and then you are totally surprised and baffled at the amount of action and what's taking place on screen. I have to say, this isn't really a great movie, nor one I can really say you should see for any real reason, other than to behold what it is, I also think the ideas in the movie will come back to haunt us, it feels like one of those films that will sit on the shelf for awhile until somebody draws a parallel. It kind of has the feel of an old 50s movie that had some outlandish sci-fi idea that was utterly inane and impossible, but later turns out to be true in some kind of weird metaphorical way. Think about Max Headroom... the tech behind the creation of a computer generated person in that pilot is simply way beyond its time, and looking back, everybody would say that they had no idea what they were talking about, they knew they wanted a computer generated person, but couldn't imagine "HOW" that was done. This to me strikes me as being similar, the idea is bigger than the details, and like GHOST IN THE MACHINE, there's something else really going on in this movie.


  1. The movie is fun and has a deeper meaning. It gives us a vision of what the future would be like if the corporates got away with imposing a lot social and economic inequalities. The bad really isn`t a bad guy at all. Too bad James died at the beginning. DAMN!!! DAMN!!!!! DAMN!!!!!!

  2. he movie is fun and has a deeper meaning. It gives us a vision of what the future would be like if the corporates got away with imposing a lot social and economic inequalities. The bad guy really isn`t a bad guy at all. Too bad James died at the beginning. DAMN!!! DAMN!!!!! DAMN!!!!!!