1995 / Director. Albert Pyun. Movie #22
HEATSEEKER is classic Pyun. Having made several martial arts films including KICKBOXER 2, KICKBOXER 4 and BLOODMATCH Albert Pyun returned to the genre that he seems at ease with the most. He's also no stranger to sci-fi and in HEATSEEKER he combined both. Set in the not too distant future half of Earth is populated with cyborg technology. Bio-enhancements are the new steroids and giant corporations dominate the world. The world's largest corporation, Sianon Corp, holds an international martial arts tournament on a remote island where cybertronic companies compete to showcase their most enhanced cyborg technology. As a drawcard Sianon invites the worlds best human fighter to participate. When he declines the corporation kidnaps his girlfriend and forces him into the competition. Pitted against opponents of super human strength it's a brutal contest of muscle vs machine. Despite being made in '95 HEATSEEKER feels like a classic 80s action movie, which is to it's credit. The film is tight and moves along quickly. There isn't a lot of mucking around or overblown melodrama. Pyun handles the action really well with the camera being used creatively. Of course having that 80's feel means that the fight sequences are packed with those cheesy sound fx. Each point of contact is compounded with wonderful biffo noises, as though someone whacked an electronic drum kit. I love this stuff. It takes me back to good times when movies were raw and action was sweaty. The VFX are nicely done and the moments of flesh being torn open to reveal metal are just awesome. If you loved KICKBOXER or BLOODSPORT then you will get a kick out of HEATSEEKER. Throw in some CYBORG and UNIVERSAL SOLDIER and you've got a nostalgic and forgotten gem.
If the movie had starred a bigger name like Jean Claude Vanne Damm or Steven Segal then it's reception and longevity would have been secured. The only way I was able to get my hands on the film was by way of German import and I've got to say... it's never looked better!