Heatseeker (1995)

It is the future. MMA continues to dominate as a spectator sport, and the current champion is Chance O’Brien, an all natural human in a field full of cyborgs, in a sport where competitors can be up to 20% cybernetic. But the Siano company wants to win big in the cybernetics industry, so they hire Chance’s greatest rival, Xao, and create a tournament where fighters can be up to 50% mechanical. To ensure ratings, the Siano corporation kidnaps Chance’s trainer and girlfriend, Jo, to force him into the tournament. Can Chance defeat Xao and the evil Siano corporation in a future full of artificial enhancements, cheap porno lighting, and perfect asses?

Yeah, this is an Albert Pyun-directed ’90s cyberpunk movie. It’s full of ridiculous overacting, awkward costumes, cartoonishly evil villains, cheap sets, and low-budget special effects. But then, if you’re watching a Pyun movie, you should know to expect that. And he is here in full glory, using his stuntman fight scenes and a tournament structure which makes little sense to make up for the limited budget.

But that’s ok, you’re not watching it for the ridiculous plot, and the film definitely delivers on people roundhouse kicking each other in the face. I don’t think 10 minutes go by without someone getting his or her perfect ass kicked.

If there is anything this movie taught me, it is that fist injuries don’t really matter, cyborgs break easily, and “DON’T YOU GET IT! HE NEEDS LOVE! LOVE!” is the greatest line ever spoken in any movie ever. Yeah, it’s a bad movie, but the fights held my attention, and the rest of it was such a glorious train wreck, I couldn’t look away. Pyun isn’t exactly a well-respected director, but I enjoyed his ridiculous cyberpunk action film Nemesis way more than this movie. This one just felt like it was trying to cover up its limited budget way too much. But what it covered it with is lots of people beating each other up and buns of steel. I can live with that.

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