MOON 44 - (1990)
There are bad movies out there. There are some truly awful pieces of celluloid in existence. The fact that these things keep getting produced shows that someone, somewhere, is watching them. Paul ‘Logan Blaze’ Anderson is one such person, who tends to find something ANYTHING of merit in some of the most despised pieces of film history. Except Picnic at Hanging Rock. Never bring up Picnic at Hanging Rock.......
Join Logan as he tries to convince you that a questionable film deserves some attention. Yes, Logan Blaze is…….
The Bad Movie Apologist
In 1990, director and co-writer Roland Emmerich took audiences to 2038 were an energy-hungry Earth is looking to the stars to keep their ipads powered and their cappuccino machines chugging.Of course, future versions of BP and Shell are calling all the shots. One such mega-corp, Galactic Mining (the Ronseal of space such companies) has been having problems with competitors using robotic
They really won'y...
Stone - who is hard so in this universe, he NEEDS to be called Stone - may be savy but he is no keyboard jockey, so he enters Moon 44 with the convicts. He may be a tough nut, but he is also a sensitive soul. We know this because he is literate and wears small glasses when he reads. This film really pushes the boundaries of characterisation. Oh yes sir, no broad brush generalisations here. This, of
The master plan is to mess with the satnavs on all the cargo shuttles home, sending them to the pirates...sorry Pyrates...instead of back to Earth. On all the other bases where this has been done, the attack drones swarm in to bury the evidence. Of course, on this base we have the crack team of….oh bugger. Well in good 90’s action film tradition, once the conspiracy is uncovered and Stone deals with McDowell in suitable explosive fashion, the convicts and navigators rally to save themselves from the incoming drones. A sacrifice has to be made and while Stone would be the obvious narrative choice the film-makers obviously felt Pare was too pretty to die. I have to agree, As such, O'Neil holds the drones off while the rest of the team escape in the last shuttle. The villain dies a hero's death.
OK, the character’s are so clichéd that they could almost be the archetypes of their kind, and the naming of companies and people can make you cringe. The plot itself is equally generic, with few surprises and it borrows elements from many of the main sci-fi hits around it in look, style and plot points. This could easily be a sequel to Sean Connery’s High Noon in Space opus, Outland, and the combination of gritty space mining, combat and anti-heroes is cut from the same cloth as Aliens and Blade Runner. Meanwhile, the special effects appeared dated even at the time, not looking out of place for a Roger Corman film from a decade before.
The practical effects….Okay, they may LOOK cheap, but they still have the solid feel you get with practical effects. The models themselves, when they can be seen in the foggy atmosphere of Moon 44, look gorgeous. They remind me of some of the better set pieces of Alien and prove that practical effects can still pay off. Indeed, the combat scenes reminded me of something which gave it an automatic upgrade - they looked at times like Star Fleet!
Beyond the effects, and the while there is a vast majority of stock characters, two stand out which have not been mentioned. First, we have Stephen Geofferys play the irrepressible Cookie, the navigators’ resident drug dealer. Fright Night’s Evil Ed has so much fun with this role, grinning manically as he peddles his wares. While you condemn his actions, you can’t help but feel drawn to his character. It helps that he uses his stock as a weapon against the more evil convicts, but it is the end which really makes him shine. O'Neil needs a navigator and Cookie steps up, helping him even as he gets a girder through the abdomen as Moon 44 falls apart around him. Both him and O’Neal are damaged, seeking redemption and both find it. That’s not your standard fare for this type of film beyond the lead characters.
Paul "Logan Blaze" "Sugar Bear" Anderson has mined the best and worst of geekery for many years. He hosted Shut Up and Watch This, has worked for the Nerdsphere Network, and been a regular on The Underbase podcasts and owns more truly strange movies than you or I could ever do.
He is also the single greatest man bear pimp to have walked the planet.