Star Raiders: The Adventures of Saber Raine – RiffTrax Live Trip Report!

Star Raiders Saber Raine
RiffTrax is still traxxing the riffs and the world is still better for it. This time we caught another of their live shows, featuring 2017’s Star Raiders: The Adventures of Saber Raine! Not only is this the newest film they’ve ever done, it was also one of the rare live shows where I haven’t seen the film beforehand. And boy I didn’t know what I was missing! Star Raiders is amazing genre pulp made on a shoestring budget and just does a bunch of crazy things that made me love the flick. That also makes it perfect RiffTrax fodder, as a movie with rubber aliens, CGI spaceships, lots of walking through a forest, and a villain who is missing a large portion of his skull means we got ourselves a target rich environment!

Before we got to the feature, we had us a short, this one that taught us an important lesson about telling the truth. At least that’s what the feature claimed, any actual lessons are accidental and you should consult your morality code. A teacher tells a group of students about three boys (why there was this weird framing device I am not certain, unless the movie company just repackaged another story) who wander around and eventually get a bunch of smooth stones from a crazed cement enthusiast and begin chucking them at random things. It’s all fun and games until one of the stones smashes a window and ends up in an old lady’s soup. One of the kids is too scared to run away and she grabs him, then the film ends and the teacher asks the audience of students to discuss telling the truth. Makes perfect sense, right? Crazy moral stories are almost as fun as when there is a creepy animated object teaching children valuable lessons, so this one was a hoot!

Star Raiders: The Adventures of Saber Raine begins in space with a confusing battle between forces we have no idea who are who, which is interrupted by Saber Raine in his custom CGI ship. He decides to defend one of his friends, who is from the species that the humans are fighting, so the humans aren’t too happy with their fellow human Saber and try to kill him, except they forgot the part where their ships were inferior and Raine Star Raiders the hell out of them. We cut to years later with the actual plot, which involves Raine being recruited by the bodyguards of the royal family to help rescue the missing children of the Emperor. This involves a lot of walking in the forest as a convenient energy net disrupts technology so they can’t fly around in their ships. The villains are lead by the guy we mentioned who was missing most of his skull, and most of his goons are dead bodies controlled by crystals and robots. What we get are a bunch of actors hamming it up, crazy costumes and makeup, and green screens up the wazoo! This leads to lots of fighting and visual insanity as the plot chugs along in brief bursts in between the wandering around scenes.

As you can imagine, the film presents a riffer’s paradise, and there were tons of jokes about Van Dien, the cgi ships, the makeup effects, the confusion on who the heroes an villains are, and the general plot. Special shout out to Gary, the name they gave one of the bug alien villains, who sadly died (multiple times thanks to the film reusing the mask as different members of the species! Poor Gary….) Some of the heroes came equipped with eyeware that was obviously sunglasses that had one of the eyecovers removed. Overall the riffing was pretty strong, the film has enough entertaining portions that fans will be pleased, and weird people like me would even enjoy the film without Mike, Kevin, and Bill cracking wise. The credits showed that writer/director Mark Steven Grove as well as actress Sara N. Salazar were in attendance. Mark Steven Grove has been making a series of genre films to showcase a lot of his talent pool at the choreography studio he runs, and he just made a fan that will be tracking down more of his filmography. Star Raiders has a big Galaxy Lords vibe, and everyone knows how much we love that one! Hopefully the rest of the batch live up to Star Raiders, and hopefully when RiffTrax Live does The Giant Spider Invasion, we will have another great show! Until then, keep raiding those stars!
RiffTrax Star Raiders Saber Raine
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Mercenaries (Review)


aka Prison Break
Written by Edward DeRuiter
Directed by Christopher Douglas Olen Ray

There is talk in the film world of an all-female Expendables movie with a bunch of names being tossed about and a plot that sounds dumb as crap. While Hollywood talks, Asylum does, and gives us Mercenaries, and all-female Expendables featuring tough ladies doing some dirty work. It’s more of a B-movie femme all star roster, but it’s still filled with cool chicks who go on to kick a lot of butt. Following more Escape From New York meets The Dirty Dozen, Mercenaries sees for female convicts recruited to save the daughter of the president from a female potential dictator. Along the way we have plenty of shooting, stabbing, kicking, punching, breaking, betraying, and quipping, making Mercenaries a must-see event for action fans!

The President’s daughter Elise Prescott is ambushed in Kazakhstan, and not by Borat. Military leader Ulrika demands the US invade her country and install her as leader, or else! The US keeps this under wraps for now, and CIA agent Mona Kendall figures the best way to sneak in is to send women because Ulrika hates all men (except her right-hand man Grigori Babishkov) and thinks women are weak. As there are no experienced women to infiltrate the prison, they need to “think inside the box” and thus grab some female prisoners at whom they can wave pardons.

Cassandra Clay (Zoë Bell) – A woman who beats up women in prison who demand tribute, and likes pizza. Former Delta Force, Ranger, and had a command. Lost half of her squad and attacked her CO because he was sending them into areas without proper support or information.
Kat Morgan (Kristanna Loken) – A sniper who shot up her boyfriend’s truck with him and his new girlfriend in it. She also throws a penny into the eye of a rapist guard.
Mei Lin Fong (Nicole Bilderback) – A techno-anarchist and exploding toilets enthusiast. She blew up a Wall Street bank (which means she’s awesome), and is also a pilot.
Raven (Vivica A. Fox) – Raven has no real name given, but she has a history with Mona. Raven was CIA, but became killer for hire and killed a CIA agent, thus the jail term.

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Asylum’s Mercenaries gets a trailer!

Mercenaries has an action-packed trailer, as female prisoners are recruited to rescue the daughter of the President, thus lots of things explode and get shot! We got Zöe Bell, Kristanna Loken, Vivica A. Fox, and Nicole Bilderback as the mercenaries, with Brigitte Nielsen as the villainess and Cynthia Rothrock as the lady who organizes the raid. It’s a mockbuster of Expendables 3, but unlike the Expendables movies, it looks like it will be good! The film premieres at San Diego Comic Con July 30th, and released everywhere streaming/VOD/DVD August 8th. How can you not want to see a film that says “Let’s go PMS from hell on this place!”??

A diplomatic official is captured and imprisoned while touring a war zone, so a team of elite female commandoes is assembled to infiltrate a women’s prison for a daring rescue. Starring Zöe Bell, Kristanna Loken, Vivica A. Fox, Brigitte Nielsen, Nicole Bilderback, and Cynthia Rothrock. Premieres at San Diego Comic Con July 30th.

Asylum gives us the all-female action flick we demand with Mercenaries!

Who has time to wait around for Hollywood to make a terrible all-female version of The Expendables (called The Expendabelles and featuring a plot where they all become hookers for some reason…) when Asylum can just go ahead and do it, and make it a women in prison film at the same time? Yes, a double-decker mockbuster called Mercenaries that takes on The Expendables 3 and Orange is the New Black season 2 (which I am on a break from binge-watching to write this up) It’s also a big middle finger to Hollywood suits who can’t be bothered to have women star in their action films.

What we get in Mercenaries is a dream team of B-movie action actresses – Zoe Bell(Raze), Vivica A. Fox(Kill Bill), Kristanna Loken(BloodRayne), Brigitte Nielsen(Red Sonja), Cynthia Rothrock(Undefeatable), and Nicole Bilderback (Bring it On). It co-stars Tim Abell, Alexis Raich, Alyma Dorsey, and Alicia Vigil.

Christopher Ray directs, from a script by Edward DeRuiter (who wrote 2-Headed Shark Attack). It was originally called Prison Raid, but got a name change like many Asylum productions.

A diplomatic official is captured and imprisoned while touring a war zone, so a team of elite female commandoes is assembled to infiltrate a women’s prison for a daring rescue.

According to the Asylum site, the street date is August 5, 2014, but no word on if this is on DVD, streaming, exclusive to one outlet before others, or what. So keep an eye out for people talking about this film eventually. If a trailer ever surfaces, I’ll post that (once again, Google is failing me!), and if I can get a copy eventually, I’ll weigh in my thoughts as well. The world will stand by, holding its breath, because we all know that TarsTarkas.NET is the word when it comes to female commando movies that take place in women’s prison.

via Asylum

Mercenaries Asylum

The B-Team is your direct to video action star dream team flick!

Finally, the people get what that want! And what they want is all the classic direct to video action flick stars of the 80s and 90s teaming up in an Expendables-like film, but without that crazy idiot Chuck Norris. Enter…The B-Team! Yes, it is no longer just an insult that the General of the week uses when chasing The A-Team, but an actual film getting made in Papua New Guinea. Check out this lineup:

Cynthia Rothrock!!!

Don “The Dragon” Wilson!!!!

Michael Dudikoff!!

Jeff Speakman!!

Possibly other people!

As Don “The Dragon” Wilson sez:

“Those four positively, but since there’s a lot of bad guys and a lot of good guys in it, there’s room for anybody that’s going to be available,” Wilson continued. “They would only be in for a few days and then out. The ones I listed, we would have to be in New Guinea the entire six-week shoot but the other actors can come and go. There’s going to be plenty of action and the game plan is to get as many guys as we can get in. I literally know every one of them.”

One of the advantages to Wilson being in so many awesome flicks through the 80s and 90s is just who he knows, so I hope he calls in all sorts of favors! He specifically mentions Mark Dacascos, Richard Norton, Karen Sheperd, Billy Blanks, Jerry Trimble, and Loren Avedon. The names alone are giving me video store flashbacks! At one point Michael Jai White was attached as one of the leads, but it looks like he’s not in it any more.

Oddly enough, there is an “official” B-Team website set up by Papua New Guinea, though the website looks terrible, like 1994-era WWW terrible. But there is enough there to get a plot synopsis of what might be an older draft of the script (and outdated as Michael Jai White is listed in the cast)

Far from the excitement of Port Moresby in PNG, jettisoning skyward is the awe inspiring Volcanic Rim of Rabaul. This Ancient and beautiful place has an intriguing and tumultuous history. Deep in the jungle/forest near Rabaul’s base, a group of archeologist unearth a highly-developed, ancient civilization. Among the amazing relics found, a mysterious amulet is discovered that is believed to hold long forgotten technological secrets. Secrets that could threaten the welfare of the planet. This amulet had remained forever lost, until now.

When world powers learn of this discovery, rogue groups from around the world race to capture the amulet and its secrets. The amulet’s secrets would give the owner great power. The Prime Minister of PNG requests that the President of the United States send an elite team of Military operatives to return the amulet to its rightful place. Rising to the call for action, the President dispatches both an elite team and a backup team of action movie heroes (Don “The Dragon” Wilson, Michael Jai White, Cynthia Rothrock & more). They enter PNG under the guise of making an action film, when in reality; it is their mission to return the amulet. They are THE B-TEAM and this, is their story.

In order to keep up the facade that the B-TEAM Members Wilson, Rothrock and White are just shooting a movie, they bring their family members along as added cover. While the Team risks their lives; their families discover the extraordinary beauty and sites of PNG. Through various missions, chases, fights, streaks of good luck, streaks of bad luck and treks through the jungle (Shenanigans, etc.) The heroes get close to securing the amulet while appearing to be making a film. The elite team ends up serving as a distraction to the rouge groups, etc while the B-Team-ers make exceptional progress.

No word on if this will hit theaters or be strictly direct to video…
Don Wilson Cynthia Rothrock
via Crave
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Undefeatable (Review)


aka Cui hua kuang mo

Cynthia Rothrock as Kristi Jones
Don Niam as Stingray
John Miller as Nick DiMarco
Donna Jason as Jennifer Simmons
Sunny David as Karen
Emille Davazac as Anna
Hang Yip Yim as Hank
Linn Thai as Eagle Lee
Shelton Lee as Diablo
Scott Shelton as Bear
Directed by Godfrey Ho (as Godfrey Hall)

You burden me with your questions
You’d have me tell no lies
You’re always asking what it’s all about
Now listen to my replies
You say to me I don’t talk enough
But when I do I’m a fool

Baby, you’re so Undefeatable! The horror of Godfrey Ho is once again unleashed upon an unsuspecting world! Mr. Ho proves that not only can you not keep a good director down, you can’t keep the bad ones down, either! Godfrey Ho’s messes of movies involve filming lots of nonsensical scenes, splicing them into half a dozen uncompleted or cheap Asian films, and dubbing them in a futile attempt to make the stories integrated. Godfrey Ho made the occasional larger budget film, where he only filmed one film at a time and was unable to use stock movies. Undefeatable is one of those movies, but even though it was made for a larger company, he still made two films with most of the same case, though the Honor and Glory wasn’t intended to be interspliced (as far as I know.) This was near the end of the career of Godfrey Ho, as he since moved on to teaching a whole generation of Hong Kong film students how to make terrible films. And people wonder why Hong Kong cinema is in a decline… Godfrey Ho’s previous films include such winners as Ninja Commandments, Zombie vs. Ninja, Ninja Terminator, Ninja Operation: Licensed to Terminate, Catman in Lethal Track, and Thunder Ninja Kids: The Hunt for the Devil Boxer. With such a wonderful pedigree, this film can be nothing but gold!

Starring in Undefeatable is the unbeatable Cynthia Rothrock, in the role that didn’t make her famous. In fact, she was pretty much already famous, so this is the role that made her less famous! Most of the other cast went on to obscurity, though a high percentage also have roles in Honor and Glory. It looks suspiciously like Mr. Ho was up to his old tricks again, but got taken down in the final release stage. The villain of the piece is Stingray, played by Don Niam, in one of his few roles. He hams this one up perfectly, with crazy rape-eyes bugged out all the time, and a genuine creepy tone that can set the most relaxed person on Earth into unnerved fits. He goes over the top and it’s fairly entertaining. Luckily for us, as much of the rest of the picture isn’t. There is a procession of fights as Rothrock earns money for her sister’s schooling and later is trying to avenge her death, some of which are okay, and a few have gimmicky opponents. The main problem is everything between the fights and Stingray’s craziness. It’s whale barf of the slimiest order. Heck, there are people who would gladly eat that whale vomit instead of watch parts of this film. And I don’t blame them.

The final fight has made the rounds on the internet, giving this film a sort of cult buzz it never had before. It does serve as one of Rothrock’s crazier films, which is different from her trend of being in bad, boring movies with few action sequences, which seemed to plague the last ten years of her career. Thankfully, the choreography is in good use, even if it’s not the high-quality stuff we are looking forward too. The whole film is a mess, but like all messes, there is some good things hidden beneath the piles of crap. Let’s get to digging, as these piles are Mt. Everest size. Maybe even Mt. Vesuvius, as it’s gonna blow!

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