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Tuesday, 1 May 2012

METALSTORM: THE DESTRUCTION OF JARED-SYN (1983)

What the Hell did I just watch? What happened in the 80 minutes which followed some awesome trailers? I saw the trailer for this insane sci-fi flick on YouTube recently and found a dirt-cheap big-box VHS of it on eBay as my interest had been piqued. Well, what can I say about this film? It was worth the price I paid, I can tell you. Hell, I'd have happily paid more to watch this demented, nonsensical, hilarious and silly film. It's so bad that it may very well be amazing.

The plot is so very incoherent that I don't actually think I can do it justice here. Let's see. The film is set in what looks like a post-apocalyptic Earth, which is apparently called Lemuria, and is pretty much the setting of every sub-Mad Max movie ever (mental note- I need to track down another copy of Warrior Of The Lost World sometime). After a girl named Dhyanna sees her father murdered by Generic Sci-Fi bad guy Jared-Syn, a 'Ranger' named Dogen (basically a cross between Han Slo and Mad Max) joins forces with her in order to end the tyrannical villain's reign of terror over the arid wasteland he seems to rule.

Along the way they must face off against the assassin Baal, a half-robotic creature with a mechanical arm which shoots some form of acid (which then causes people to have mad, hallucinogenic experiences before they die), Cyclopeans (typical post-apocalyptic scavenger badass types, but with mutilated faces resulting in them only having one eye each) and assorted ripoffs from Star Wars, Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon and numerous other properties.

The film was released in cinemas in 3D as part of the short-lived 1980s 3D revival, and I can only imagine how ridiculous it looked in 3D, as it looks cheap and demented in 2D alone. The bad guy Jared-Syn is collecting magical crystals (of course, why wouldn't he?), seemingly for the sole purpose of setting up the 'climactic' battle, but by the time that scene arrived, I had lost any sense of what was going on and was just letting the film wash over me.

It's a PG rated film, but the level of violence made me check the box a couple of times. A close up of a gory head wound at one point was quite a surprise for a PG movie, but after twenty minutes of this film, anything is possible. Scenes play seemingly at random after about the first ten minutes, breaking off into other scenes at odd points and back again. Everything is covered in fake smoke. Fight scenes erupt out of nowhere and last ages, and when the atrociously superimposed airborne battle hits you, there is nothing left to do but laugh while quaking with terror at your mind being unravelled by what's going on before you onscreen.

Like a loose mix of Krull and Mad Max, with a hndredth of the budget and none of the compelling bits, Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn is an absolute car-crash of a movie. It's awful in every possible way, but it's bloody hard to look away from it. One to watch when drunk or suffering from sleep deprivation. Just don't try to make any sense out of it, or you'll end up naked and crying while dousing yourself with cold baked beans.

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