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  Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn The Third Dimension Is Boredom
Year: 1983
Director: Charles Band
Stars: Jeffrey Byron, Michael Preston, Tim Thomerson, Kelly Preston, Richard Moll, R. David Smith, Larry Pennell, Marty Zagon, Mickey Fox, J. Bill Jones, Winston Jones, Mike Jones, Michael S. Walter, Rick Militi, Speed Stearns
Genre: Action, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  3 (from 1 vote)
Review: Dogen (Jeffrey Byron) is driving through an area of wasteland and desert on his quest to track down the renegade Jared-Syn (Michael Preston). After a while, he notices he has company as a jet fighter soars overhead and opens fire, blasting the ground around Dogen's vehicle and destroying his roof-mounted cannon. Luckily, he has another laser gun which he uses to blow the fighter out of the sky, saving his skin, but further up the trail a young woman, Dhyana (Kelly Preston), will cross paths with him with great significance...

During the early eighties there was a shortlived craze for three-dimensional entertainment, mainly at the cinema, but once audiences noticed that most of those films were using the gimmick to make up for the fact that the rest of the production was, frankly, not so good, they started to lose money at the box office. One of those money losers was Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn, a project brought to us by producer Albert Band, as was so much of the low budget science fiction of this era, and this was not what could be called the company's finest hour.

This was intended as the first in a series of adventures, which would explain why there is a noticeable lack of destruction of Jared-Syn no matter what the title says, and doubts have been cast over what exactly a "metalstorm" is too, for that matter. Watching it now, it looks like your basic Star Wars mixed with Mad Max 2 rip-off, and as it was one of a plethora of such movies it's little wonder that it didn't catch on, especially in light of the fact that there is nothing remotely exciting about the story or the presentation, even in 3-D.

Our hero meets Dhyana after her father was killed by the cyborg son of Jared-Syn while they were out mining for crystals - it's never entirely clear why they're so important - and they immediately hit it off. Actually, their relationship is so vital that Jared-Syn is intent on breaking them up, again, for reasons which never become plain. What happens is that Dhyana is replaced one evening by a bloke in a monster suit which is despatched by a trickle of water. There's not much entertainment here even of the camp variety, because daft moments like that are the exception rather than the rule.

Michael Preston was in Mad Max 2, probably the reason he was cast in this, but he makes a lacklustre villain, which is fitting for such a letdown of a film. Brightening things up briefly is the appearance of Tim Thomerson, a Band films regular, as a boozy sidekick, but the weak dialogue which tries to make him into a Han Solo character and fails doesn't do him any favours. Metalstorm could be viewed as a road movie taking into account the amount of driving Dogen does, not ten minutes go by before he's back behind the wheel again, but this simply adds to the ennui. Defiantly unexciting, you would be better off watching a Saturday morning cartoon instead of this, and without the 3-D the film is a painfully tedious experience. Music by Richard Band.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

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