Directed by: John Hyams
Written by: Victor Ostrovsky
Produced by: Craig Baumgarten, Moshe Diamant, Peter Hyams
Starring: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren, Andrei Arlovski
Run Time: 97 min
Jean-Claude Van Damme is back in the latest instilment of the Universal Soldier series and is…. well the same he always was except older. Who could resist a straight to dvd movie starring not only Van Damme but Dolph Lundgren and UFC’s Andrei Arlovski. This movie has all of those old great “actors” that I watched when I grew up and spent countless nights staying up all night eating bad fast food, drinking soda and watching bad movies.
The story takes place in modern day Russia where a separatist group has kidnapped the president’s son and daughter and is holding them for ransom at the famous nuclear reactor in Chernobyl. If that isn’t scary enough, the group has threatened to destroy what’s left of the reactor which would doom Russia to a nuclear holocaust. As a response the US military reactivates the secret Universal Soldier program in order to save Russia from the separatist group and nuclear disaster that would bring generations of mutated children with amazing math skills (well the mutants aren’t part of the movie but it should be).
Luc Deveraux, Van Damme, has been out of the Universal Soldier program for years and is in the process of being rehabilitated in order to be reintroduced back into society. Luc’s progress seemed to be going well even though he can’t remember what happened to him the day before, suffers from swollen knees and is confused most of the time. The army knows that Luc is the only man for the job, after their first plan fails, and his rehabilitation is stopped so he can save the world.
All famous heroes need an insurmountable super villain which is where the NGU, played by Andrei Arlovski comes in. The NGU is the newest super soldier created by a mad scientist who dreams of taking over the world. The NGU is emotionless which makes it an easy role to play; all the Arlovski has to do is fight and walk around and look tough, which he does well.
I expected the action to be slightly better than it was and the main draw of the movie was seeing my favorite B-movie stars in action. You may have noticed that I didn’t mention Lundgren’s role and that wasn’t by accident; his role was pathetic and it seemed as if it was there just to get his name on the credits. In the end this movie wasn’t as bad as it could have been but it wasn’t very good either but that’s why the movie is straight to DVD. This movie is best to watch when you’re in the mood to relive staying up all night and watching movies on TBS when you were young.