Thursday, 21 June 2012



A while back I rented the thoroughly worthless Dracula 3000 on the basis that it was included on a list of spaceship movies on the Den Of Geek website. Well, I've only gone and done it again: watching a film that was listed on Den Of Geek's rundown of ten "delightfully cheesy 90s scifi movie trailers". First off, it's not nearly as atrocious as Dracula 3000 and secondly, I didn't actually have to rent it as it's part of a box set of "Science Fiction" nonsense movies I bought very cheap several years ago but haven't yet ploughed through.

Den Of Geek's description of Hologram Man as a "concoction of car crashes, explosions and shouting body-builders" is entirely apt and accurate. What they didn't add was that it's incredibly silly and nonsensical: in the future demented super-mega-criminal Slash Gallagher (Evan Lurie, also the associate producer and the screenwriter) is imprisoned in a virtual cyberprison after a spectacular series of chases, explosions and shootouts. Five years later and it's his first parole hearing - but his fellow sociopaths hijack the machinery and bring him out as an indestructible hologram, whereupon he inevitably starts a new wave of robbery and murder. And only dedicated cop Decoda (Joe Lara) can stop him....

There's a massive moral confusion at the heart of the movie - Slash is obviously the villain, but he's seeking to take the city of Los Angeles away from the tyrannical billionaire overlords and put it back in the hands of the citizens who just want the right to live their own lives and run their own businesses, while Decoda is the powerless corporate pawn assigned to stop him regardless of how many innocent people get killed. A far more interesting idea would have been for the two to join forces: fewer people get randomly slaughtered and The Man (Michael Nouri) gets taken down far quicker. Instead, wave after wave of doomed police officers are mown down by Slash's goons and dozens of cars are spectacularly blown up.

If the movie gets steadily sillier as it goes on (Slash gets particularly annoyed when people call him Norman) and ultimately does boil down to the ridiculously overdeveloped torsos of Lara and Lurie beating the hell out of each other while everything explodes, and the sub-Matrix virtual reality and sub-Tron cyberspace stuff makes absolutely no sense at all, at least it delivers on the blood squibs, fist fights and cars flipping over and bursting into flames. But Richard Pepin and Joseph Merhi are old hands at this sort of dystopian piffle having churned out dozens of titles like Cyber Tracker (and its sequel) and T-Force and Steel Frontier. Hologram Man is rubbish, clearly, but purely on the crash bang wallop level it doesn't hold back. William Sanderson (from Blade Runner) turns up as one of Slash's associates.


Slash! Ah-aaaah!

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