Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Alien Week: Alien Agent

No, Adrian Paul is not in this movie!  Today's movie is Alien Agent, a Direct-to-DVD movie starring Marc Dacascos.  If you don't know him, he's the star of a bunch of low-budget action films like Crying Freeman, Only the Strong and, naturally, an Asylum film called I Am Omega.  The plot is simple...sort of.  It's never good when I qualify that, is it?  Basically, an alien race wants to colonize Earth as their new home-world and they don't care who they have to kill to do it.  However, that's only a fringe group- the rest are good.  They send their best Agent- Dacascos- to make things right and stop the aliens that come here to set the invasion in-motion.  Why they send one when there are dozens of criminals is never explained.  This does sound similar to the plot of Tracker/Alien Tracker, a show/'film' starring Adrian Paul.  There are minor tweaks to the story- them being criminals and not militants- but they are similar.  One major difference you'll see here is, well, something that you have to see to believe.  To find out what it is and if this film is actually competent, read on...
Marc is an alien agent looking for his foes.  When they rob a military truck- by way of a femme fatale back-flipping into the truck!-, he springs into generic action.  Cue car chase shoot-out!
After getting ejected from his car, him and another alien engage in a kung-fu fight.  When things go his way, Marc pulls out a shotgun with special rounds and then the silly moment occurs...
You see, these aliens are basically sparkles that take up human bodies.  That's less cool than a kick-ass, bi-racial alien fighter for sure.  The silly effects don't help!
As for Billy Zane, he plays a Redneck- though this is set in the Mid-West- who hits on this small-town waitress with a tattoo shirt.  Was that a trend for five seconds that I missed?  Didn't think so.
Out drinking, Zane is drowned in a lake that a meteor hit.  Just go with me, people.  This allows the sparkle aliens to take over his body.  In this case, it's the militant group's General- the big cheese!
When the action hits the small town, Marc and the Waitress join forces.  She's his Short-Round, folks!

In action, Marc generally kicks ass and can't be killed by bullets...sort of.  As the film progresses, his powers weaken.  It's just a shame that someone with actual acting range isn't around to convey the emotion involved!
Not that it matters.  For all of the movie's decent action and plotting, silly stuff like this is just hard to ignore.  He is all made of stars!!!

Oh and there's a sub-plot where the teenager wants to sleep with Dacascos.  You realize that you're trying to f#%k an alien Scarecrow, right?!?
Wonder why I haven't mentioned Zane in a while?  Well, he's only in about five scenes- one with Dacascos.

As the biggest 'star' here (by virtue of being in Titanic), he is quickly written out, setting up the fight between Dacascos and his former-girlfriend.  He wins.  Afterwards, he risks the portal to go home, but...
It's all a ruse.  He just comes back seconds later, making the teenager think that he's gone forever.  What a dick!

In a post-script, he fights more alien terrorists, setting up a sequel that nobody requested.  The End.
Sparkle sparkle sparkle!  This movie is certainly interesting in theory, but pretty lackluster in execution.  It's not just a budgetary thing either.  Admittedly, if the movie had a $40,000,000 budget instead of a $4,000,000 one, the effects would be better.  That aside, the action is uneven.  In the opening scene, Dacascos kicks lots of ass.  In his next fight scene against a fellow alien, he gets the shit kicked out of him!  He only wins by grabbing his Shotgun Ex Machina (a plot idea later seen in Drive Angry) and getting one shot in.  Even in his final fight scene, it's closer than you'd imagine, with the exception of instantly knocking away Zane.  Why is he in this again?  He appears in one scene as the redneck, gets killed in the next and spends the rest of the movie occasionally showing up to say 'How are things going?' and then disappearing.  Why cast him and do nothing with him?  He gets one brief 'I'm evil' speech before being disposed of and even that's not very good.  If he's supposed to be like Zod- alien General, main villain-, you have done a terrible job of doing that!  I can name numerous bad movies built around having C-List action stars fight- they actually have it happen.  Hell, even the titular creatures in Human Robot vs. The Aztec Mummy fight- for about 20 seconds, granted!  It is also hard to ignore the similarities to the Adrian Paul vehicle covered recently.  This is definitely better than the 'film' version, but it's not great.  If you like Direct-to-Video Action, you can do far worse.  Other than the silly effects, it lacks the goofy charm of other films to draw in the curious.  As it is, it falls flat- in the middle of the pack.
Next up, I go into Instant Viewing territory with an Australian import.  This may seem familiar.  Stay tuned...

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