Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Killer Instinct


Directed by: Cirio H. Santiago
Written by: Joe Mari Avellana
Starring: Robert Patrick, Robert Dryer, William Steis, Morgan Douglas, Lydie Denier, Barbara Patrick, Joe Mari Avellana

One time action-movie-machine, Cirio H. Santiago cranks out his millionth Vietnam/jungle/warfare flick, Killer Instinct and it’s just as nutty, action packed and a helluva a good time as the other million. A very young and eager Robert Patrick, before his time as the iconic T1000, stars as Johnny Ransom (awesome, awesome action hero name!) a gung ho, bad-ass Vietnam soldier who, along with his crew, get captured by a pesky Russian general and his horde of bad guys. Tortured and humiliated, Ransom nevertheless escapes and after some recuperation, a bit of romance with a lovely anti-war campaigner (Patrick’s future real life wife, Barbara) and lots of shouting and disagreeing with his commander, Ransom heads back into hell to rescue his POW buddies and a kindly old communist defector: M16 gun blazing craziness ensues. 

Robert Patrick started out his career in several Cirio H. Santiago action epics (including Equalizer 2000 and the similar Vietnam gun blast-fest Eye of the Eagle), and Killer Instinct (or Behind Enemy Lines as it’s also known) is typical of the era: low budget, shot in the Philippines, a bit of plot, a good dose of zaniness and tons and tons of M16 shell case dispensing and jungle hut blowing up action. While not as good as say the likes of Santiago’s Nam Angels, Killer Instinct sticks to its bullet blistering intentions and serves up the action good and plenty. Santiago also squeezes in a bit of an anti-war stance in the form of Barbara Patrick’s war opposer, who spends her time mostly shouting at Ransom to then only go and fall for him and, of course, bed him because you know, “He just wants to get the job done and get his boys home damnit!” Ransom and his crew also team up with some other resistance fighters (who appear to be French, complete with stereotypical berets!) and there’s a woman resistance fighter who appears to be dressed as Indiana Jones for some inexplicable reason! So see, there is a lot going on in-between the jungle being shredded and blown up!

But really Santiago just wants to get to the next M16 bullet strewing scene and there are lots of them along with Patrick riding a helicopter and blowing up the Russian’s base in explosive style. We also get plenty of rocket launcher action and an army jeep complete with multi rocket launchers blowing the crap out everything in the finale: wow! Seriously what’s not to the like: Santiago, war action, explosions galore and a very young T1000 blasting through the jungle and various abandoned quarries all in the name of 80s action entertainment?


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