UPDATE: NOW AVAILABLE! (Reviewed by Sidekick) The new UK producers Picture Palace of Peril have released their premiere episode, The Good, The Bad, & The Cyborg. Check out a review below, as well as a trailer edited by none other than The Rye.
Review by Sidekick
Do British people just intrinsically know how to make entertaining superheroine movies? It’s starting to feel that way. Let’s take a look at The Good, the Bad, and the Cyborg, the premier film from Picture Palace of Peril [Beware spoilers!]
I knew I would like this movie almost immediately when the opening credits ran to a funky 70s groove. We soon meet Katrina England, the leader of a terrorist cell. Can I take an opportunity to mention that the actress who plays Katrina England is a total babe? There, I just did. The meeting is soon interrupted however by the superheroine Scarlet Fox, who I want to mention is also a total babe.
Scarlet Fox rather easily takes out every member of the gang and then faces off against Katrina. The fight is relatively even for a short while. Katrina hits a low blow and a knee lift to the face, but Scarlet Fox proves a little too much in the end and knocks Katrina out with a punch that sends her crashing into a wall. Actually, there is a nice payoff in the closing moments of this scene as Scarlet Fox has a little spontaneous celebration that made my laugh out loud.
We are then introduced to the Bay Corporation who are in the Cyborg business. Bay Corporation has actually issued a challenge and would like Scarlet Fox to fight one of their newest creations. But before that can happen, Katrina England busts in, beats up a scientist, and hacks into the cyborgs programming.
Scarlet Fox shows up to confront Katrina and they square off for a second time. With her superior fighting skills, Katrina controls most of the action in a martial arts heavy fight, but SF seemingly knocks Katrina out with a blow to the head. But it all turns out to be a ruse when Katrina’s eyes open and she locks her legs around the heroines neck and squeezes her unconscious.
Scarlet Fox wakes up to find her hands are tied behind her back with ropes. She easily rips apart her bonds, but hears a computer voice say that the cyborgs self destruct sequence has been initiated. But with a little luck on her side SF is able to stop the cyborg from exploding.
But Scarlet Fox’s pride gets the best of her when the scientist overseeing the Cyborg comments that it is stronger than the heroine. So, SF asks that the cyborg be activated so she can fight it. Mistake. Although it’s not totally one sided, the cyborg is strong enough that SF has to stay on the defensive for most of the fight, and when she does land shots, they do little more than push the cyborg backward.
Eventually the Cyborg slaps on a choke hold that SF can’t break out of and she takes a bevy of punches to the face which knock her down and almost out. Things only get worse when it is revealed that Katrina hacked into the cyborg and removed its non-lethal safety features. The cyborg grabs SF in a lengthy reverse bearhug, and although she is able to break free, the fear in her eyes is obvious as the cyborg closes in for the kill. And that’s where the film ends. Cliffhanger!
So, after one episode I can safely say I am a fan of Picture Palace of Peril. And I think after a premier episode, it’s important that fans point out the good and the bad to help producers as they move forward. So, I’ll do that now and I hope our readers do the same in the comments section.
1. As I mentioned above, the girls in this are off-the-charts gorgeous.
2. It features an enormous cast and every single one of them can act. There are no hacks in this group.
3. The movie is at times hilarious. Let’s be honest, other producers have made attempts at humor before, and it doesn’t always work out. It did here. Kudos to the writers and actors for pulling it off.
4. It looks like they are setting up a big world with massive corporations, superheroines, villains/villainesses, and terrorist cells. That’s exciting stuff. I like when producers think big, but also know how to keep things simple.
5. I thought the fighting ranged from solid to very good. This is usually the last thing to round into shape for any producer, so I’m sure any weaknesses in choreography will be addressed over time. I thought that the second fight with Katrina and SF was especially well done.
Things to be Improved Upon:
1. For a company called Picture Palace of Peril, (the operative word being “Peril”) I didn’t think there was a ton of it, at least not until the end. That doesn’t affect someone like me, who loves it when the story takes center stage, but I think some fans may expect and appreciate a few more perilous moments. There’s one low blow, a bearhug, a choke hold, and a scissors hold that knocks SF unconscious, and that’s about it as far as the peril goes.
That’s about it for negatives. Like I mentioned, this is an incredibly well done film, and it’s obvious that a lot of care, love, and effort went into making it. This is absolutely one of the best premier episodes created by any producer that we cover. I tried to stick to the action, but the official website that can be found here has a ton of interesting background tidbits on the characters and the world itself. It was a great read that I’d recommended to anyone. Can’t wait to see what’s next.