Thursday, March 12, 2015

Bruno Mattei Week: Cop Game

Welcome back readers of mine and I hope to make it up for Bruno Mattei Week. As previously mentioned, I delayed write ups for personal reasons including replacing a cell phone and in general had family over to hang out with and RPG with. We are back on track now and hey how about a cop movie with such depth of a DePalma thriller? We journey to Saigon during the last year of the Vietnam War when two MP (Military Police) are operating in plain clothes find a dead prostitute in her own bed and no one is speaking up on who could have commited such a heinous act?? Oh wait... no that is the plot to Off Limits with Willem Dafoe and Gregory Hines. Yeah, that is a good film. We will be seeing the knock-off that is confusing, loads of explosions and dialogue so bad you will crack a tooth clenching your jaw. This is Cop Game.

Must not look at the camera. Crap, I did.

Our film opens with stock footage of Vietnam but clearly they are filming in the Philippines as Vietnam is a trifle touchy about war films in their backyard. Go figure. Italian master of designer impostor of cinema Bruno Mattei and written by Claudio Fragasso (Women's Prison Massacre, Rats: Night of Terror, Cop Game, Zombi 3, Strike Commando 2 and Shocking Dark) brings us more Soviet activity in Vietnam. This time around it is the KGB have been rumored to be in the area... but enough of that thrilling concept, let's go visit buddy MPs Morgan (Brent Huff of The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik Yak, Oblivion 2: Backlash, Hijack, Pensacola: Wing of Gold, Final Examination, Kill Speed and D-TEC) and Hawk (Max Laurel of Zuma, Hell Hunters, The Last American Soldier and Robowar) as they uncover a group of elite soldiers have gone completely crackers and are killing civilians. Our cops piece together the killers may be a recon squad known as Cobra Force... led by a guy with a speech impediment and his cohort, the Man in the Silver Mask.

Umbrella Corporation's early door-to-door sales.

It has proven difficult to get at the truth with the slinging of red herrings and red tape thanks to Skipper a.k.a. Captain Kirk (Nope, not Shatner but exploitation actor Romano Puppo of Death Rides a Horse, The Great Alligator, Robowar, 2019: After the Fall of New York and Zombie 4: After Death) Colonel Kasler (Wener Pochath of Bloodlust, A Man Called Rage, Target, Days of Hell, Striker and Laser Mission) and the enigmatic Annie (Candice Daly of The New Mike Hammer, Girs Just Want to Have Fun, Hell Hunters, Cop Game, Zombie 4: After Death and Where Truth Lies) tosssing plot twists, rumors on the street and general misdirection. Can our able cops find out who is responsible for this mayhem? Will the guilty be brought to justice? Will the damn soda machine stop carrying RC and put out some Mexicoke instead?

Well let's see what to say about this film. Brent Huff seems to be channeling Reb Brown as he shouts his every other line. Rocking his mirrored sunglasses and a Hawaiian shirt so loud Magnum and Sam Axe would have passed on it. I was expecting to have people hurled about at the camera or maybe a good floor waxer chase scene. With a decent 80's title song kicking into overdrive the film gets you pumped to watch more as it is played throughout the movie in two different versions. We have footage that Mattei lifted from both Strike Commando and Robowar. That's right, he lifted huts exploding and mass wreckage from two of his previous movies. Only Mattei can steal from his own material. Our writer does a quick appearance for a role as a corporal and well it is as memorable as his stint in Hell of the Living Dead and Zombi 3. Also Actor Ottaviano Dell ' Acqua of Rats: Night of Terror, Escape From the Bronx, Zombi 3, Strike Commando 2 and Double Team manages to put in a performance as well.

What starts out as a decent car chase de-evolves into a forced perspective miniatures and further more uses footage of The Ark of the Sun God as the cars and number of passengers constantly change. Coupled with the hours of which both were shot it looks about late morning to early afternoon, so not a smooth transition.

The dialogue pulls some groaners as we are reminded that Captain Kirk's name hails from this Roddenberry project... Trek something or other. We see a fair amount of late 80's clothes and cars as this is supposed to be the end of the Vietnam War. Mindless violence, a plot so generic and more shots fired forms than Chuck Norris ever filled out. I was not really impressed.

And there on the handle, was a hook!!!   Not feeling the love, kids.