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Jonathon Dabell <BC602070@pixie.ntu.ac.uk>
It's yet another late eighties adventure/action film featuring such greats as Ernest Borgnine, Herbert Lom, Oliver Reed, Robert Vaughn and Daniel Greene (from Atomic Cyborg and many, many Italian action films – maybe he got lost on his way to some Fabrizia De Angelis production?). This one has a kind of Dirty Dozen type deal going on which I'll explain .now: Over in some African country I never bothered remembering the name of, Borgnine's son gets kidnapped by the government (or the rebels, something like that), and Ernest goes to Africa to get him back, employing the help of Herbet Lom, then gathering together a rag tag group of mercenaries (Daniel Greene, token chick, token martial artist, old man, religious nut etc) and heads off into the desert with loads of guns to get him back. You know, the usual crap.
It's fun watching Borgnine and his crew blowing the crap out of stuff, and facing off first against Oliver Reed's security forces (you've got to love the way the film makes you think that Reed will come back for another battle, but vanishes from the film instead) then Robert Vaughan's nazi-style forces. Things blow up, people fire machines guns at each other, and is it just me or did Borgnine and his crew just flat out murder those smugglers in order to get that plane? Why are action films from this era so appealing? I'm not sure. There's no barrage of over-stylised shots, no self-parody, no Tarantinoisms, and no modern film would end with such a cheesy freeze frame like this one does. That all helps. Plus, who doesn't like Ernest Borgnine? He was Mermaid Man!
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