GENTLEMAN OF LEISURE REVIEWS
STARSHIP TROOPERS 2: HERO OF THE FEDERATION by Paul Cooney
Before I plunge into the awesome awesomeness that is Starship Troopers Dos, allow me to state a truth - the best submarine movie ever made was U-571. Take that, Jurgen Prochnow! If you hang around with cineastes and Nazi sympathizers, who are generally one in the same, you'll hear a lot of blather about Das Boot and how wondrous it is. But how wondrous is it? Does it have McConahey? Does it have Jack Noseworthy? In fact, it is noteworthy for having neither! It has a bunch of German guys speaking German, which is a dying language mind you, and at no point is there ever any threat of Jon Bon Jovi singing, which is a shame since they were on a sub and hence things were always wet and frequently slippery. What does this have to do with Starship Troopers? Absolutely nothing.
I digress. Hollywood clearly hasn't made enough movies about bugs. Sure they seem keen to churn out an endless succession of sassy maid movies and keep making films about dogs who despise their owners, but what about bugs? When will their voice be heard?
Starship Troopers 2 fills that void! If lame-looking, spindly-legged bugs weren't enough to get you into the theater, the producers were savvy enough to include Sandrine Holt, fresh off her amazing performance as sullen and horny Indian maiden in Black Robe. Will she be wan and lusty in this celestial insect stomping romp? We can only hope!
It starts off with some stuff happening and jerky Lieutenant barking cowardly orders and displaying gross arrogance and incompetence as the grizzled sergeant looks on and listens through gritted teeth. I think it's the first time I've ever seen this dynamic on film and I applaud the director for his originality! Dear god Sandrine you temptress...must I watch this nonsense?
It's becoming obvious that this is an Aliens rip off, but thankfully devoid of Paul Reiser. Sandrine has a key role in the movie playing some sort of radar operator. I bet she'd make a good DJ. Spin it Sandrine spin it!
"Bugs!" Sandrine yells and somewhere Lame Judi Dench winces cause she knows, secretly, deep down under her layers of flab and wrinkle, that Miss Holt is the better actress! I said it! Burn the crown and down with the royal jubilee!
Some of the invading bugs are zapped by something called "perimeter burn," which evokes unhappy memories of my crotch in last July before I won my special new underwear. They have vents!
Speaking of crotch: Ed Lauter. The man is a walking hard-on such is the intensity of his glare and bullet skull. You hear that, bugs? You're dealing with Lauter now! When America finally gets around to dismantling Mount Rushmore, that grotesque edifice which celebrates slave holders and guys who wear glasses, and replaces it with the real heroes - actors - you know Ed Lauter is going to get one of the four granite slots.
(The other three? Statham (naturally), Michael Ironside, and in an incredible upset, Aidan Quinn.)
Where was I?
A badass solder is released from the brig when the bugs threaten to overrun the outpost and every rifle is needed. He looks like Richard Hatch, the naked gay guy from the first season of Survivor. Clearly the bugs have no chance.
Don't underestimate this hombre! When he's not flexing he's spouting such pearls of wisdom as "Watch out for officers, it's there job to get you killed," and "When you throw your life away, instead of fool they call you hero" and "Cowards always hide behind women and rules." Wowsers! This cat is nailing it!
Enough sagacity! Sandrine's gettin' some! I love this broad, it seems she only takes roles where she has the prospect of getting humped. Hello - what's this? That was all too brief! She was barely fondled before they cut away to more of this bug nonsense. Hang the editor!
In a surprise and appealing twist, there's another attractive actress in this picture. The alluring Private Soda [Kelly Carlson, a.k.a. Kate Triton, wife of John Triton...The Marine! -- ed.] wakes from her repose and quickly disrobes. I like her style. She must have been having some lust-filled dreams cause the second she's up she wants to get down! Captain Badass oddly rebuts her advances and she resorts to lesbianism, but in another weird twist the chick she hits on turns down her entreaties too...denied! What is going on here? These are some dedicated grunts. This chick has managed to remain fresh and perky even on this distant dusty bug-infested planet but she can't find anyone to take advantage of her softness.
I spoke too soon! Chubby soldier waggishly comments "sippin some Soda" when finally an intrepid trooper doesn't let her nudity go to waste. A happy ending? Oh no! That trailblazer is Sandrine's boyfriend! Heartbreak!
Sandrine consoles herself by wearing a helmet, and I admire her eyebrows. Someone else does too apparently...a randy medic! He asks, "Feelin' better?"
Because she is an angel incapable of deceit she answers honestly, "No."
He is a rascal. "You want to?"
Boing! Turns out she does and soon he has tasted her. Even if the bugs were to take him they would be too late cause he is already in paradise!
Whoa! These wily bugs. No longer content to simply hurtle themselves en mass to a Van Dienesque death, they have now hatched a plan to secretly inhabit the bodies of humans and act as 5th columnists, destroying mankind from within! It's absolutely fiendish but I'm confident Sandrine can stop it.
In happier news Ed Lauter is shirtless. Yowza. I don't know what his record for nudity is, but this might be the premier in flagrante delicioso Ed Lauter topless scene in his long and storied celluloid career. Note that I didn't say cellulite career, cause the man is positively gorgeous, without an ounce of fat! Break out the VCR's and record this bad boy! Use high quality Maxell tapes, none of that bargain shit. That is one beautiful old man!
Where was I?
Oh no! While I was waxing poetic on Lauter's waxed chest, Sandrine's body has been infiltrated, and not in the good way. She's got a bug inside her and our lithe, sweaty heroine cackles wickedly as the lesbian soldier who is still human through and through is taunted. Who lent the bugs a copy of Aliens anyway? The insects clearly watched it over and over again and and came up with this amazing plot.
Caramba...the most disturbing thing yet in this bug killing extravaganza...the two attractive actresses have been killed! Dear god, only the plain female lead remains! What nefarious mind created this terrible scenario? I've lost all interest! When does America Ninja Warrior start? Where can I turn for titillation?
As I feel myself driven mad for lack of a skinny, tawny female lead, Lauter opines "Man is born insane." Judging by the way this film has turned out he's right!
In a stirring semi-conclusion Captain Badass holds off the insect horde long enough to allow the unappealing straggler humans to survive, but since they're unattractive their lives aren't worth as much and I no longer have concern.
The movie ends bizarrely with a neatly-dressed and well-fed recruiter talking to a baby: "Hurry up Spud, we need fresh meat for the grinder." The mama holding the baby recoils in horror and rushes off. The End.
It seems like some sort of weird anti-war message which is a little ridiculous considering war, 90% of the time, is a successful and worthwhile endeavor. I mean, aside from The War of 1812, The Mexican War, The Spanish-American War, World War I, Korea, Vietnam, our excursions in the Phillippines and Central America, Grenada, Iraq, Somalia, Lebanon, Iraq again, Afghanistan and some of the other ones I've left out, all our other wars have been completely justified and haven't wasted a single life!
Speaking of wasted, it's my midyear resolution to only watch movies if they contain actresses named Sandrine or close approximations, preferably tawny, and coherent plots remain, as always, optional.
"Diversions are the only things that truly matter in this world." - Shakespeare (towards the back of one of those plays you never got around to reading...I think it has a king in it.)
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