Wednesday, November 18, 2009

R.O.T.O.R (1989) *

Cast: Richard Gesswein, Margaret Trigg, Jayne Smith

Directed by Cullen Blaine

Amateur night Robocop rip off finds scientists Gesswein and Smith (R.O.T.O.R stands for Robotic Officer Tactical Operational Research) out hunting the monster they created when the cyborg policeman they created is looking to terminate a woman for speeding. (Actually she was the passenger in the speeder’s car but logic gets you nowhere here) Meanwhile the story doesn’t even take place until an 45 minutes in, as the film revolves around the Scientist telling such story in flashback, stopping a robbery and basically explaining how bad the world is, despite the fact that this looks like a rural small town, not a wasteland. This fiasco gets high marks in the camp department, as there are very few movies that rival the unintentionally hilarious ineptitude in not just the filmmaking quality but just in the way the movie uses images to tell the story. One such moment includes the cyber cop walking through chairs, reaching through car windows over and over again, and slow motion shots of would be dramatic moments. Also the cyber cop hates radios and noise of any kind, so a typical action sequence features the heroes almost being strangled by the cyber cop, only to be saved from death when the horn is honked by another person. Also the cyber cop in question has super natural powers such as being able to see what took place at various locations despite not being there and barring the fact that one would need time travel equipment for such, R.O.T.O.R never ceases to tickle the funny bone. That said this amateurish rural Texan made effort comes to hilarious life when the scientists start getting philosophical about the human error involved, how it’s their fault and much, much more. R.O.T.O.R is sheer Ed Wood-like incompetence and when it comes to camp, they don’t come much funnier than this.

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