Another Sci-Fi Channel
Original Picture comes at our video store shelves via "Shockwave",
the story of automated defensive droids gone horribly wrong on
a deserted island. A pack of Navy SEALS is dispatched to shut
off the robots, and you almost certainly saw it coming long before
you put the DVD in the case that it wasn't going to be easy to
do just that.
Never mind that "Shockwave"
is heavier on the Star Trek alumni than James Doohan's funeral
procession, containing Worf, Sulu, and the Emergency Medical Hologram
from "Voyager". Never mind that these super-destructive
robots both look and behave, almost verbatim, like the tripods
from "War of the Worlds" right down to the heat rays
they mount on their fronts. Never mind that the concept of Original
Picture in the title Sci-Fi Channel Original Picture means less
and less by the movie. Never mind that the effects in "Shockwave"
are so monstrously cheesy that they have to resort to lousy CG
to take off a human's head, and that somehow, all firearms seem
to contain limitless supplies of ammo because I never so much
as saw anybody changing a clip on camera.
You know what? I changed
my mind. Mind it. Mind ALL of it. This kind of godawful filmmaking
is ruining the video stores.
I've got a whole laundry
list of objections to this ninety-minute misery, but I have to
be fair. If you're okay with a pretty derivative sci-fi action
movie then you're going to be all right with "Shockwave".
That's what it is, basically...from the seen-it-before supervillains
to the valiant and woefully outgunning United States Military
team sent to stop them, everything about this cookie-cutter actioner
is so familiar that you've practically seen it already.
I will say this for
"Shockwave", though...I like that the machines are learning
machines. It's a new and somewhat unexpected wrinkle that the
machines are out to get off the island, even as the SEALs try
to get off the island themselves, and leave the machines behind.
The ending features
at least one interesting surprise, and one pretty derivative twist,
so it all averages out to blah in the end.
The special features
include audio options, Spanish and English subtitles, and trailers
for "See No Evil", "Jekyll and Hyde", and
"Komodo Vs. Cobra".
All in all, "Shockwave"
is barely a ripple, a low-grade and highly derivative yawnfest
that'll make you wonder why you even bothered. Though there's
little specifically wrong with it, there's also very little specifically
right with it, and this kind of cookie-cutter, formulaic drivel
just is not worth your time.
Directed by Jay Andrews
Written by Jay Andrews, Bill Monroe
Starring Joe Lando, Josh Coxx, Michael Dorn, Bill Mumy
Produced by Paul Hertzberg
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