Sunday, March 22, 2015

Hologram Man (Richard Pepin, 1995)

I don't mean to start off on a somber note, but what I'd like to know is: Who, if anyone, is going to bury all the henchmen and cops that are killed throughout this action-heavy sci-fi action movie? Since, the film, Hologram Man, is supposed to take place in the future, I guess they could have developed some kind of newfangled way to dispose of dead bodies (corporeal vaporization perhaps?). But still, the sheer number of henchmen and cops who fall to the ground as a direct result of gunfire in this Richard Pepin-directed masterpiece is ridiculous. Unless the henchmen and cops who buy it were grown in some kind of lab, I'm going to go ahead and assume they all have families. And if that's the case, I think it's safe to assume that the members of these so-called "families" aren't going to be too pleased when they find out their loved ones (whether they be dastardly henchmen or deluded cops) were killed by holograms with amazing hair. Okay, maybe calling the hair on the head of the one responsible for killing the cops "amazing" might be pushing it (though, fans of the KoЯn look may beg to differ). Nevertheless, I think it's safe to say that the dreamy-looking fella who kills henchmen like it were a bodily function has the best hair ever.

(You never really explained why the families of the dead henchmen would be upset when they found out the man who killed their loved ones has amazing hair.)

And I never will. Just kidding. The reason is simple. They all had this idea in their heads that their loved ones were slaughtered by a cruel, inhuman monster. Which, granted, is annoying, but understandable (it's what cruel, inhuman monsters do). However, the second they find out their loved one was done in by someone so exceedingly hunky, they're going to be quite angry. In fact, I'd go as far as to say their anger was tinged with a hint of jealously. Anger, for obvious reasons. As for jealously. Think about it. Who wouldn't want to gunned down by a man with long, flowing locks? I know I would, and I'm not even that big a fan of being gunned down.

In my own convoluted way, what I think trying to say is: A lot of people are killed in this movie (most of which are shot to death, but some are blown up... blown up real good), and that Joe Lara has great hair.

While I am somewhat jealous of Joe Lara's hair (it's so silky and manageable), I was actually more jealous of Evan Lurie. No, not because of his hair (to be honest, I found his KoЯn-do to be revolting). The reason I was jealous is because his henchmen are played by Nicholas Worth (Don't Answer the Phone), Tommy "Tiny" Lister and William Sanderson!!!

(Don't forget Cole S. McKay as "Thug with Flame Thrower.") Fuck yeah, that guy ruled.

If that wasn't enough, he engages in multiple position sexual intercourse with his blonde lady friend in the film's second scene. At first I was like: Why does Evan Lurie get an epic sex scene and Joe Lara only gets a pre-coitus fade out? It's simple, really. Evan Lurie wrote the screenplay. Meaning, Evan Lurie gets an extended sex scene. If Joe Lara wants an extended sex scene in a movie, he should write a screenplay.

Anyway, before we're subjected to this so-called "sex scene" (I almost threw up when Evan Lurie does a mid-thrust hair flip while plowing into his lady friend's futuristic vagina with his futuristic penis), we get a taste of what to expect from this movie in terms of entertainment value.

Opening with an intense shoot-out between–you guessed it–a heavily-armed gang of henchmen and an outgunned collection of cops, the film makes it clear early on that a lot of people are going to get killed in this movie. Though, I have to say, the henchmen and the cops are mostly to blame for the excessive body count. No, not because they're the one's shooting at each other, but because they don't seem to know how to use cover. I mean, standing out in the open in firing your weapon aimlessly is a surefire way to get yourself killed. I tried yelling: Use the parked cars as cover!!! But I guess they couldn't hear me.

(I'm not surprised, with all that gunfire, and the fact that it's only a movie.)

In the end, the cops, lead by Wes Strickland (John Amos), a veteran cop who doesn't play by the rules, are the one's who come out on top during this particular shoot out. And while he appreciates the fact that it was his partner's non-rule playing ways that lead them to narrowly defeat the henchmen, Decoda (Joe Lara), a regulation following rookie cop, is conflicted by his unorthodox methods.

When a plot to assassinate the governor is uncovered, Wes and Decoda are put in charge of protecting him. Using his loyal sidekick One-Eye (Nicholas Worth) as a diversionary tactic, super-villain Slash Gallagher (Evan Lurie) rams the governor's motorcade with a stolen bus. As expected, a shoot out ensues, followed by a car chase. Both of these events lead to the death of the governor and Wes Strickland, and the capture of Slash Gallagher.

Instead of being put in a normal prison, Slash Gallagher is placed in holographic stasis. You see, in the future, prisons as you and I know them are obsolete.

We flash-forward five years to find Decoda somewhat stressed. You might think, what's this guy got to be stressed about? I mean, he's still got great hair, he's got a reasonably attractive lady scientist lady friend. In other words, what's the deal?

Haven't you heard? Slash Gallagher is up for parole today. I know, you're thinking: There's no way they're going to grant him parole... he killed the governor, and, not to mention, a non-rule playing cop. That's true, there's zero chance Judge James Daughton (The Beach Girls and Malibu Beach) would allow this to happen. However, while Slash has been in holographic stasis, his loyal henchmen, including the aforementioned One-Eye, computer expert Giggles (William Sanderson), Eightball (Tommy 'Tiny' Lister) and Thug with Flame Thrower (Cole S. McKay), have been hard at work trying to free him. And they see Slash's parole hearing as the perfect opportunity to spring him.

How do you free someone whose been separated from their physical body? I got one word for you: Cyberspace. Downloading Slash's holographic essence, his henchmen manage to free him during his parole hearing, much to the chagrin of Decoda and his new partner, Carradine (Anneliza Scott), a blue jean-wearing lady cop.

The coolest thing about Decoda's quest to recapture his nemesis is that the system he works for is just as corrupt and malevolent. Caught between the sheer villainy of Slash Gallagher and the fascist California Corporation, or "Cal Corp, " (a domed section of Los Angeles run by a ruthless Michael Nouri), Decoda must struggle to come to terms with the fact that both entities are evil.

When you hear Decoda's simplistic solution to this quandary in the film's final scene, you'll probably think to yourself: That might just work. That being said, a lot people are going to have to be shot and killed for it to do so. Seriously, if you piled the dead on top of each other, you could probably reach the top of the tallest building in Dayton, Ohio; which, at 124 meters, is pretty freaking tall.

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