Blu-ray Review: Nemesis (1992)

February 24, 2019

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, director, producer, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

In 2027 Los Angeles, cybernetic bounty hunter Alex Raine (Olivier Gruner) finds himself on the losing end of a battle with a group of equally robotic terrorists named the Red Army Hammerheads. After healing up, and entering one of those existential crises man/machines often find themselves in…or so I’m told, Alex is kidnapped by his old boss, Commissioner Farnsworth (Tim Thomerson) for one last mission; stop his old girlfriend, the android Jared (Marjorie Monaghan), from delivering security details of an upcoming summit between the U.S. and Japan to Angie-Liv (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa); the leader of the Hammerheads…and if he refuses the bomb in his heart, placed courtesy of Farnsworth, will explode. But, things aren’t exactly what they seem with the R.A.H., and soon Alex is up to his eighty-six point five percent still human ass in bullets, bad guys, butt cheeks and…well killer robot skeletons; as one does.

Holy shit Nemesis…what a fucking picture! This baby has it all; insane action sequences that feature a minimum of 45,000,000,001 bullets (I counted), jaw-dropping stunt work, horribly performed German accents, nudity, cyborgs n’ robots (realized through glorious practical effects including stop-motion!), a pistol packin’ foul mouthed granny, and an amazing cast of genre superstars including the aforementioned Thomerson and Tagawa, along with performances from Brion James, Thom Mathews, Yuji Okumoto, Jackie Earle Haley, and a baby-faced (and buttocked) Thomas Jane.

Along with all of that certified, Grade-A awesome, the film also features kinetic directing from the legendary Albert Pyun (The Sword and the Sorcerer, Cyborg, and many, many more) that is every bit as fluid and dynamic as the action that blazes across the screen, a great story, courtesy of  Rebecca Charles (who just so happens to be Pyun under a studio mandated pseudonym) as well that is both full of anime-style crazy/cool along with some fun twists and turns, and some astounding locations that feature everything from destroyed buildings, to rain forests, to a volcano rim!

As rad-ass killer as Nemesis is, our sexy pals at MVD Entertainment have packed this Blu-ray release (from their MVD Rewind label) with some choice extras! First comes an interview with Pyun discussing the production of the film, followed by a chat with Eric Karson, one of the producers of the film (who has nothing but good things to say about Pyun, even though the director reveals their differences in his interview). We also get Pyun’s informative commentary over his Nemesis 2.0; a cut of the film structured more to his original vision (but it does feature many “dead spots” where there’s more watching than talking). Speaking of Nemesis 2.0...

This release comes with a second disc (on DVD) of bonus content! First up is a non-commentary cut of Nemesis 2.0, followed by a Japanese cut of the film. Both are in rough shape (especially compared to the truly amazing transfer the original film gets on Disc One), but make for fun viewing all the same! Also included are intros to the film from Pyun and Gruner (with the former providing an afterward as well), an archival interview with Gruner, three archival “making of” featurettes (one a basic “behind-the-scenes” piece, one focusing on the film’s stunts and effects, and one on the visual effects), a “killcount” of the various deaths in the film, photo galleries (one of stills and behind-the-scenes shots, and one of key art), a collection of TV spots, and trailers for all of the flicks in the Nemesis series (on Disc One).

Pound for pound one of the most entertaining cyborg-based, sci-fi yarns you’ll see this side of James Cameron; Nemesis is simply awesome as all fuck and deserves a place in your collection!



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