Director – Steve Rudzinski (Everyone Must Die!)
Starring – Steve Rudzinki, Bill Murphy, Aleen Isley (Everyone Must Die!)
Release Date – 2013
Rating – 4/5
Tagline – “Stand tall…And shake the heavens…”
Growing up I was your typical late 80s and early 90s kid. I loved Saturday morning cartoons and anything Nickelodeon. However, the shows I remember the most are Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Big Bad Beetleborgs. Both shows were an example of tokusatsu films.
Tokusatsu is a popular style of film made in Japan. What makes tokusatsu so popular is the wide use of special effects and the mash-up of multiple genres. Sadly, due to the popularity of MMPR, any American tokusatsu film is immediately compared to it. That is very disheartening for the filmmaker and any future viewer because Americans are not properly educated on this Japanese style of film. That is like stating all horror movies are The Exorcist and that is far from the case.
Anyway, a few months back I was pleased to see that director Dustin Mills was currently working on the visual effects for an upcoming indie flick called Super Task Force One. I quickly learned that the film was indeed a tokusatsu film and I had to see it. I donated to the Indiegogo campaign for it and after waiting a few weeks I was excited when I received the signed copy in the mail.
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows Jason Oliver (Rudzinski, a tribute to green ranger Tommy Oliver and red ranger Jason Lee Scott) who is harassed by bullies and often finds comfort in his loving and very attractive girlfriend’s arms. One day he is walking through the park and bumps into a hulking man wearing red. The man is bleeding and hands Jason a green transponder turning him in to the green enforcer. Moments later a monster carrying a flame shooting sword arrives and kills him. Jason is able to harness the powers of the green suit and destroys the monster.
This spirals Jason into a conspiracy involving the galaxy’s most heinous warlord Emperor Zagel (Murphy) and the team of enforcers that protected the world from him and other intergalactic beasts. Zagel plans on using all the enforcer’s transponders to resurrect a giant robot forcing the timid Jason to step up to save the day and all mankind.**Spoiler Alert**
Some movies you can just look at the trailer and cover art for and tell you will like it and that was what I saw with this movie. From the moment I first saw the teaser poster and trailer I was hooked on this film. It showed that it had all the elements that I love about tokusatsu films. Rudzinski is a true fan of this style of films. He took the cliches of it all and made fun of it while staying true to it.
The acting in this one is actually pretty damn good which is surprising. If you search this cast up on imdb you will see that most of them do not have any prior acting credits. However, they did an amazing job and they need to continue their acting because it will be a shame if they do not. The story is nothing original but can be seen in a whole new light when thrown into a tokusatsu flick. In fact, I loved the story and film altogether. I really want to see a damn sequel. Since my first initial viewing I have seen the film three times and I need a sequel!
Finally, the film has a lot of visual and practical effects. Some of the visual effects are amazing while others look terrible. I know indie director Dustin Mills did the visual effects and being the fan of Mills I am it pains me to say that they were not consistent throughout. Some look great while others were laughably bad and are rivaled by the shitty CGI The Asylum films uses in their movies. Also, the creatures looked good for the movie but when, not if, Rudzinski makes a sequel he should really look towards Meatball Machine to draw inspiration. Overall, this movie is a true tribute to everything I love about Japanese films and Saturday mornings growing up. This movie has monsters, fights, explosions, and giant robots. From start to finish this movie will entertain and it leaves me begging for a sequel. Please? I highly recommend it.