While horror will always be my favorite, there are plenty of other genres that I actually enjoy, others that are just as fun. When done right, some of the most fun can be had with a clever combination of action and sci-fi. That is exactly what we get with Albert Pyun’s Nemesis.
Troubled officer, Alex, is caught in the middle an ongoing struggle of power between systems cowboys, bio enhanced gangsters, and cyborg outlaws, when he is ordered to track down a former lover who is suspected of smuggling delicate information to terrorists.
I knew absolutely nothing about Nemesis before hearing of its recent home release. Just like a lot of the horror films that I end up watching and falling in love with, this movie flew completely under my radar. But, as the saying goes, “better late than never,” as this one turned out to be a really great one.
Nemesis features some real B-level acting performances and an over-the-top, futuristic script that is equally as silly as it is entertaining.
The cast consists of French actor Olivier Gruner, as our main protagonist, and a ton of other familiar faces from all sorts of genre films. I got more and more excited as the film’s 96 minutes rolled on and I was introduced to characters portrayed by the likes of a young Thomas Jane (Punisher, The Mist), Tim Thomerson (Dollman, Trancers), Thom Mathews (Return of the Living Dead, Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives), Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Mortal Kombat), to name a few.
The fact that the acting was really only above-average throughout the movie’s entirety doesn’t matter one bit, as you are sure to be distracted by the myriad of shootouts, explosions, and, of course, boobs!
While the 1980’s were arguably the greatest time for this type of science fiction and action hybrid, co-writer and director, Albert Pyun, wasn’t going to let the dawn of a new decade stop him from topping all of the others that came before his project.
Nemesis tells the story of a [now] not-so-distant future, where men have women’s names (i.e. a man named Michelle) and vice versa (i.e. a woman named Jared), and people speak with out-of-place accents (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa speaking as if he was Jamaican does take some getting used to).
It features tons of special effects, most of which are executed using practical means. This is, of course, always a huge plus for us genre fans. Additionally, the final act of Nemesis features some amazing stop-motion animation and an incredible final fight that is not to be missed!
This 1992 flick takes all the great sleaze and cheese from the 80’s sci-fi action scene and presents it with a much larger budget than most. Thus, creating an extremely fun robot-filled shoot ’em up experience.
The Home Release
As part of the MVD Rewind collection, Nemesis is available to own on Blu-ray from MVD Visual. The special collector’s edition comes with a DVD disc consisting of various cuts of the film (Japanese Extended Cut, Nemesis 2.0 Directors Cut, etc.), a poster, and a bunch of other great bonus material.
The film is presented in various aspect ratios and looks fantastic no matter how you choose to view it. I will say, however, that I was kind of thrown off by the English subtitles that accompany the movie.
Even though the film is in English, I more-often-than-not like to watch with subtitles turned on. With this particular release, it was extremely hard to follow at times, due to a discrepancy between what was being said and what was written at the bottom of my screen; Some scenes are audibly being narrated by Alex, himself, while the lines are being scribed as if a female narrator was speaking about Alex.
Whether I received some sort of defective copy of the release or this is how all copies play, I still highly recommend picking it up for yourself. It is tons of fun and you will not be disappointed.
I am excited to hunt down copies of the sequels next because I give Nemesis 4 heart bomb jammer lights out of 5!