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Transmorphers

USA 2007
produced by
David Michael Latt, David Rimawi (executive) for The Asylum
directed by Leigh Scott
starring Matthew Wolf, Amy Weber, Shaley Scott, Eliza Swenson, Griff Furst, Michael Tower, Sarah Hall, Erin Evans (as Erin Sullivan), Noel Thurman, Troy Thomas, Dennis Kinard, Jason S. Gray, Elissa Dowling, Jessica Bork, Thomas Downey, Joseph Cornell, Dane Rosselli, Sofie Norman, Monique La Barr, David Shick, Kristen Quintrall, Shane Lenzen-O'Connell, Marat Glazer, Elodie Hara, Danae Nason, Eric La Barr, Josh Foster, James Newstrom, Ryan Jenkins, Leigh Scott, Ross Edgar, Danny Maldonado, Amber Slawner, Rhett Giles (voice)
written by Leigh Scott, music by Eliza Swenson/Divine Madness, Chris Ridenhour, special and visual effects by Synapse FX

Transmorphers

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Available on DVD !

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For 400 years, humankind has been living underground as alien robots have taken over the surface. Since the aliens are far advanced, technologically, they've only seen humans as a nuisance so far, not an actual threat, and it's only been recent that they've started moving in on human targets - which isn't quite good of course, as the humans are in the process of developing technology to defeat their alien oppressors but are nowhere near finished. Basically, the idea is to implant a virus into one of the robotic aliens, but that means taking one captive first, and there's nobody who can do this ... except one, Warren Mitchell (Matthew Wolf), but he's been cryogenically frozen for treason, and it's supposed to stay that way for another 100 years. But in this time of needs, General Van Ryberg (Eliza Swenson), decides to have him - and his second-in-command Itchy (Griff Furst) - unfrozen, even if Mitchell did have an affair with her wife (Amy Weber). Mitchell is a man known for doing nothing by the book, so he gathers a gang of misfits around himself to go to the surface and to the job - and they do the job and bring back an alien robot ... and this is where problems only begin, as not only does the alien die before it can be infected with the virus, it also has some beacon for all the other robots to home in on and finally get rid of that human nuisance ...

 

Ok, the title makes it plain obvious what then contemporary movie this one tries to cash in on - like Transformers itself cashed in on a 1980s kiddie TV show -, but other than that and a few decently but not super-convincingly done CGI robots, this film stays remarkably (and thankfully) clear from just copying the formula, instead tells a quite different story - that might not be 100% original, mind you, as it uses tons of B-movie clichées, but it does so in an engaging way and makes a valid attempt at world-building away from flashy computer effects, and with quite some success, too, the human drama in this film really works. Where the film falls a little apart though is in its action sequences, and it's not so much that the robots fail to wow, but somehow these scenes lack cohesiveness and immediacy, sometimes it really feels they're edited together at random - which of course might be due to a hasty finishing job to beat Transformers to the punch (by about a month, give or take). Kind of a pity, really, this could have been much better with a bit of extra care.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD