Alienator (1990)

Ross Hagan is the swarthy space scum and rebel leader Kol who is about to meet justice at the hands of the tyrants executioners.  The chief executioner’s (Jan-Michael Vincent) plans start to go awry as a visiting dignitary arrives a day ahead of schedule in order to observe the station’s efficiency.  Kol is able to take advantage of the brief confusion and stage a daring escape gunning down several guards before hijacking a plastic spaceship model and escaping the station entirely.  Then…only then…after almost fifteen minutes of raucous space station action…the opening credits roll.  As the plastic ship magically glides through outer space. 

The whole time the collar is somehow making him sluggish or groggy and he points the vessel at earth and slams into the woods.  We can’t have a Fred Olen Ray movie totally devoid of teenagers so a Winnebago load of twenty to thirty somethings portraying teenagers drunkenly crash into Kol and take him to get help in the form of rough and ready forest ranger Ward Armstrong who is portrayed by another three named so and so.  John Michael Montgomery…no…anyhow when he’s not busting hillbilly poachers he spends a lot of time trapping and banding rabbits.  When he isn’t, Michael Martin Murphey…nah…spends a lot of time in the ol’ standard issue ranger rustic cabin.  When the kids roll up Lou Diamond Phillips…possibly…comes out and helps them with their sick alien.  Ranger Lee Harvey Oswald…shit that ain’t it either…tries to figure out what is wrong with Kol.  

The pissed off executioner unleashes his secret weapon, the hunting unit or the titular Alienator who is the hulking female body builder Teagan Clive.  She begins disintegrating yokels left and right and lays siege to the cabin.  John Phillip Law…that’s it…springs into action and tries to drive the unstoppable alien back but has to abandon his cabin and seek shelter and aid from a skeptical Vietnam vet (Leo Gordon).  When the motley crew manage to neutralize the she beast they find out that Kol isn’t what they expected.  Instead of a benevolent being he is a selfish and murderous rogue who will try to win out no matter the cost.  Finally completing her mission the hunter unit returns to the stars.

The effects are laughable but ALIENATOR is a quite enjoyable sci-fi/action flick.  The space station escape is a whole lot of fun as Ross Hagan dispatches inept guards and even discards his gun and uses a sack of insects on one of them.  The goofy ship is also funny as can be and topped off by the giantess Teagan looking like the lead singer of an 80’s metal band.  Check it out.  It’s a fun flick on the Shout! Factory 4 Action-Packed Movie Marathon with CYCLONE, EYE OF THE TIGER and EXTERMINATOR 2.

Cyclone (1987)

Fred Olen Ray brings us this fairly staid sci-fi-ish espionage thriller CYCLONE staring the Fall Guy’s Heather Thomas as smoking hot, badass biker babe Teri and Jeffrey Combs as her nerdy not-so-mad scientist boyfriend Rick.  The US military industrial complex has funneled five million bucks into Rick’s backyard garage to get a weapon that will change the world.  Rick has designed the most technologically sophisticated and heavily armed weapons system the world has ever known in the form of a…motorcycle.  I guess this is the 80s so it had to be either a motorcycle or a satellite.

It might be a spoiler to say that Teri ends up fighting off a shadowy cabal out to get this deadly weapon after Rick is killed except for the fact the DVD box says so and after about twenty minutes the viewer is wondering when the hell someone is going to kill Rick.  When it does happen though the payoff is pretty cool.  Rick gets his brains scrambled in spectacular fashion at a punk club when his cabbage patch is fucked up by an aging punk rocker with an ice pick.  With Rick lying dead on the dance floor only Teri stands in between the punk rock baddies and the badass world destroying future bike.

Good thing Rick planned for his murder in advance and made a self

activating recording for Teri which triggered for her after she had gone home after his death.  It turns out that the most important part of the bike is the power pack that pulls energy from the hydrogen in the air and everyone is after this source of limitless power in addition to the bike.  Why not put a limitless source of power in a fighter/bomber or a mega tank?  Meh, I could go off on a tangent about the sheer boneheadedness of making something which channels free and unlimited energy from the air and putting it in a bike but there really isn’t a point is there?  This is a Fred Olen Ray flick so it doesn’t matter how the conceit came about just as long as its fun.   And CYCLONE is definitely a lot of fun. 

There are plenty of shots of Heather Thomas being a badass, gorgeous if somewhat ditzy blonde.  Since this is a FOR flick there is some gratuitous nudity and leering shots but not as much as you’d expect.  There are shots of 80s babes working out and stretching and doing other things that must be done sweaty and sexy and then there is a shower scene that plays in the background as two principles in the foreground perform one of the less boring exposition dumps that I’ve been subjected to. 

CYCLONE is a meatheaded, tense and exciting actioner in the best

of the 80s action tradition.  Fred Olen Ray gets some flack for being formulaic but some forget his bag of tricks.  He makes some good movies and I for one do not mind if he goes back to the well to give us some more. Some folks may notice the band playing in the punk rock club is none other than Haunted Garage! Bad ass!

CYCLONE is available in the ACTION 4 PACK from Shout! Factory along with EYE OF THE TIGER, EXTERMINATOR 2 and ALIENATOR.