Friday, July 8, 2011

Robot Jox (1990)

In the future, territory disputes will be decided not by war, but by giant battling robots that face off in a world arena. With the fate of the nation resting on his shoulders, the Western Market's most skilled pilot Achilles must make his last stand against the sadistic Alexander and the Russian Confederation for control over the oilfields of Alaska. More than a decade before Michael Bay brought the mighty TRANSFORMERS to the screen, RE-ANIMATOR's Stuart Gordon teamed up with Charles Band's Empire Pictures and special effects wizard Dave Allen once more to create this exciting mini-epic featuring some of the most amazing stop-motion animation in recent film. ROBOT JOX is one of Empire's biggest-budgeted features, and it shows. Gordon invests every penny on screen and into the incredible set pieces and miniatures. The characters fall further into archetypes than cliches, and given the over-the-top comic book nature of the plot, they work! Gordon and screenwriter Joe Haldeman present a fully functioning futuristic society, with few oversights in the environments and even language used in their world that could destroy the illusion. We are only given a small piece of the history and background behind the ongoing battles, which lends to a much larger scope as an entire universe clearly exists beyond what is seen. This isn't just a cheap game of Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots caught on tape, but camp extravagance and entertainment at their best. SciFi fans will find their new cult classic in ROBOT JOX!

Rating: 7/10.
Entertainment: 8/10.

If you liked ROBOT JOX, check out:
ROBOT WARS, TRANSFORMERS, CRASH AND BURN, ARENA, THE ROAD WARRIOR, ICE PIRATES.

3 comments:

  1. Probebly my favourite of the trilogy ("Crash and Burn" & "Robot Wars" being the other two) and along with "Arena" one of those movies I remembered liking growing up, only for it to suddenly vanish with the death of VHS.
    I really love the ending which highlights the moment when they ran out of money, as they go into space for all of five seconds, then for some reason having the two leads fighting with poles, before ending suddenly with the stupidist line of dialogue ever!
    A great if forgotten classic which earned Gordon the title of Maestro from the Itallian production team.

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  2. EJ, how awesome is Robot Jox? The other two dont even compare. I only saw it for the first time yesterday, and Arena got its first watch about 6mo ago. Love um. You didnt find the fist bump in the end to have the same profound effect as the closing scene of Rocky?! ;)

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  3. I saw this one on HBO years and years ago, and always loved it. It's essential cheesiness actually makes it more lovable!

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