The Clint Achilles Chronicles

Now In Color!

Van Damme-a-thon 2015: Universal Soldier: The Return

You have to believe what you say, and if you believe what you’re saying, then acting is easy…

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Movie Boiled Down To Brass Tax: Goldberg to Van Damme – “YOU’RE NEXT!”

Silver Tax Expansion: Van Damme returns to the Universal Soldier franchise as hero Luc Deveraux, the once dead soldier brought back to life. Now for some reason Van Damme is completely human(don’t worry about it though because they never bother giving an explanation, just accept and move on). He’s working with the government to perfect the Unisol program of reanimating dead soldiers into super soldiers to fight our wars and such so that young Americans no longer have to go over there and die. There is an artificial intelligence involved that goes haywire when the program is going to be shut down and sends the Unisols on a rampage. The only man who can stop them, obviously is Van Damme.

Golden Dragon Review: Van Damme never does sequels unless they’re Universal Soldier movies that is. So years after this they retconned the entire movie because it kind of sucks and they made a much better sequel(Regeneration). The movie features WCW superstar Bill Goldberg, kind of running through this movie like his wrestling career, not selling anything, spouting out neanderthal like catch phrases, and acting badly. Van Damme manages to stop him from committing rape in the first five minutes of the movie and apparently Goldberg never gets over it, because he spends the rest of the movie trying to take Van Damme out. In a hilariously bad moment, Van Damme runs him over with a truck and Goldberg pops out the one liner of “I hate that guy.” They must have been trying to sell t-shirts because he says again later in the movie. The artificial intelligence, strongly resembling HAL 9000 from 2001 A Space Odyssey, is aided by a nineties cliche cyberpunk hacker, who puts the a.i. into Michael Jai White’s body. Look, you have to make a lot of concessions to watch this movie and just not question anything. It’s bad science fiction, but it’s rated r for “non-stop strong violence,” so just know what you’re getting in for and enjoy it for what it is. There is a great moment when the AI gives the finger which is a legitimate laugh out loud moment(that I probably just ruined for you). By the time Michael Jai White starts kicking dudes and kidnapping Van Damme’s daughter(again how can a once dead dude procreate?) we’ve already had a scene in a strip club, a bad video game escort mission, and more Goldberg than even the most ardent WCW fans could handle. Hey if nothing else it’s got a rocking heavy metal soundtrack with a killer Anthrax song(Fueled from Stomp 442), and a great final battle between Michael Jai White and JCVD himself.

Platinum Van Damme Rating: 2 and 1/2 Spin Kicks Out of 5.

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