Monday 18 February 2013

DVD review: Manborg (2011)

It is the future and Nazi demons led by the nefarious Count Draculon and his minions rise from the bowels of Hell and take over the planet. A ragtag group of rebels is fighting back but their rebellion is effectively crushed, leaving nothing but scorched earth on which the Hellions plan to build their new world. After a personal confrontation with the Count, a soldier is blasted into oblivion only to awake in the dark future to find most of his body replaced with cybernetic enhancements. A mysterious inventor has turned his bloodied remains into Manborg, cyborg of destruction. Manborg is written by Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski who also is the director. A self-aware pastiche, a homage to Sci-Fi's of the 80s and 90s with lots of references to the movies and videogames of that era.The acting is intentionally over-the-top bad with cheesy dubbing and corny dialogue. The camerawork and editing isn’t pretty to look at. Most of the film is shot on green screen, the set pieces and decors look terribly cheap and amateurish but has a charm. The pacing is high, the film only runs 60 minutes. It´s violent and it´s pretty gory. The stop motion animation work (claymation) is impressive, there are some bad computer rendered fx (yet again, an intentional move).
This review is based upon the region 2 UK DVD release from Rockstone Films.
Rating: 5½ out of 7. Manborg is very silly but in a good way. It´s 60 minutes of goofy, hectic and often-hilarious fun. It´s hard to disapprove of the enthusiasm and the nice cheesy charm it shows. Astron-6 (who are also behind Troma-released Father’s Day) delivers again and knowing that this was made in the director’s parent’s garage and the basement of a store, using found materials for set decoration and models all for about $1,000 it is quite an impressive achivement. Manborg isn´t for everybody but fanboys will probably love it. Make sure you check it out.

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