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Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 24/2/2010 1:43:07 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
Holy crap, what a great little film!

Director John Hyams, with a limited budget, actors who either a) were doing this for contractual reasons, b) were only available for a week or c) UFC fighters, and a single location for his action scenes to a sequel to a 15 year + movie, and its awful sequel (not to mention crappy TV Movies), produced real gold here.

What emerged is an exciting, well shot movie which avoids the trap of many DTV movies, by keeping the plot lean and functional.

The plot, as it is, involves terrorists taking over the former Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station, and threatens to blow up the core. They have also kidnapped the President of Russia (maybe somewhere else) kids. It is up to a joint US/Russian taskforce to save the kids and disarm the terrorist group. Only thing is, they have a next generation Unisolider - tougher, stronger and more cunning than those we met in the first film.

Moving away from the blockbuster fun of the first movie, and the stupidity of the second film, US3 is a pretty bleak movie, but has a heck of a lot of ambition.

Van Damme, looking pretty old now, and downbeat, gives a subdued performance, although I would not call it lazy. His character, Luc Deveraux, seems numb to the world. If the first film was about him escaping the bonds of his programming, this sequel is all about the character reverting back the function he was built for - war.

Lundgren doesn't get a huge amount of screen time, but what he has makes an impression. While not playing the role of Andrew Scott quite as broad, he brings intensity to the role which is a whole other kinda crazy. While a brief appearance, the pay off is wonderful - and a cool Blade Runner reference to boot!

Andrei Arlovski (one of the UFC fighters) plays a next generation Unisol and is suitably imposing. His fight scenes with a group of previous generation Unisoliders was great - the guy is HUGE, and says little.

Mike Pyle, playing a normal solider, in the middle of this crazy never-ending war, does good work, as goes Kerry Shale as the evilllll Dr.Colin.

Now that is out of the way, what about the action?

This is some of the most impressive DTV stuff I have ever seen. The movie starts with an impressive car chase, follows on with an attack on the terrorists base which brings to mind the Modern Warfare videogames (in fact much of the film evokes those sort of games - although the film never becomes too comic book), and never really stops. Van Damme rampaging through a building taking out the bad guys with a knife was a show stopping moment.

This isn't a film for everyone. It simply cannot compete with the blockbusters in terms of scale, but I have to say I found this film to be much more engaging than say, Terminator: Salvation. Indeed the way Hyams shot this reminds me of the young, hungry James Cameron.

That the film looks great is not coincidence. Hyams father, Peter Hyams is the director of 2010, Capricorn One, Outland, Time Cop, End of Days..., and is the cinematographer for US3. While the bleak, grey, East European setting is something of a cliché now in DTV circles, they manage to make it look beautiful. The reactor in particular is well shot.

You may think this is over hyping the pudding, but for a film like this to turn out to this good is still a rare thing. If you like solid action filmmaking, no quick cutting, plenty of violence, and some pretty nifty camera work, then you are in for a treat.

If this is the start of a reboot, long may it continue. If this is a one off, then fingers crossed that Hyams gets some bigger work.

We are entering a time when some really good stuff is coming from the world of DTV. Universal Solider 3 is further evidence that it should not be a ghetto for past it action stars and directors who have fallen from grace.

< Message edited by Rgirvan44 -- 24/2/2010 1:47:26 PM >


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Post #: 1
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 24/2/2010 3:40:17 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5669
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
I was quite surprised by the film. Maybe my expectation was way down on watch as I enjoyed it, a lot more that the dire sequel and the piss poor TV movie franchise....

I agree with you 100% on the DTV comment. There is a heck of good stuff out there, most of the best horrors I have seen over the past year have been straight to DVD, and while UN:3 is nowhere near the class of say JCVD, it was nice to see Van Damme follow up that awesome movie, with a pretty good actioner......

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RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 27/2/2010 8:36:17 AM   
Snake-Eyes


Posts: 9970
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: ZONE 2
I'm glad this film has had so much positive feedback (especially for a DTV). As I've mentioned elsewhere, I'm gonna wait til April for it to be released on blu-ray and then it'll be a double-bill with the Scott Adkins flick NINJA

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Post #: 3
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 27/2/2010 2:01:29 PM   
Invader_Ace


Posts: 1584
Joined: 31/7/2008
Saw this last night.  It is great.  While it doesn't explicitly state that Universal Soldier 2 never happened, this is a much better sequel.  It looked great, the action was brutal and "realistic".  It was also well staged and (take note Hollywood) clear to follow. 
There's some great scenes, the opening, the tracking-shot knife attack by Van-Damme and the Van-Damme Vs Lundgren fight are stand outs for me.
I loved the way it made both Van Damme and Lundgren sympathetic characters.  This was the opposite of what I expected to happen in Lundgren's case. 
Most of all I was very impressed by the use they made of the one location, a factor that usually shows up how cheap most Direct to DVD movies are.

All in all, awesome.

Oh, What was Lundgren gonna tell him to you think?


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Post #: 4
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 28/2/2010 9:58:44 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
That is indeed the question. I have no doubt that it would have been deep and would match the "Tears in the Rain" speech in Blade Runner.

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Post #: 5
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 7/3/2010 1:41:33 PM   
Captain Black


Posts: 6730
Joined: 30/9/2005
Have to agree - adding the qualifier 'of its type', this is, genuinely, a really good film. It's got a wafer-thin but streamlined plot that efficiently puts everything in place for some final act pyrotechnics, the acting is decidedly 'not terrible', and much of the speaking cast in fact has some decent character arcs (hell, the Russian PM has about three scenes). Hyams is a notch better at the hand to hand stuff over the shooting, but he's not bad at the latter, and there's even a bravura extended tracking shot that owes more to Children of Men (it's not as good, but it's good enough that it's reminiscent) than anything else.

Better than an awful lot of summer action flicks of the last decade, I reckon.


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RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 8/3/2010 7:10:02 AM   
Snake-Eyes


Posts: 9970
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: ZONE 2
quote:

ORIGINAL: Captain Black

Better than an awful lot of summer action flicks of the last decade, I reckon.



wow. now I'm more intrigued than ever! mind you, with the 'quality' of Summer Action Flicks we've all been subjected to recently, it shouldn't really be a difficult task.

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Post #: 7
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 6/4/2010 2:54:30 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
Just a reminder that this is now out in the UK on DVD and BR and well worth even just a rental.

Don't worry if you haven't seen part 2. The film doesn't acknowledge it.

Pretty much my favorite action movie of the year so far (second is Blood and Bone - another great DTV movie)

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Post #: 8
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 6/4/2010 4:31:52 PM   
Snake-Eyes


Posts: 9970
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: ZONE 2
Pre-ordered, man - Should arrive any day and then it's my Saturday Night double-bill with NINJA

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Post #: 9
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 6/4/2010 4:45:56 PM   
Scott_

 

Posts: 4187
Joined: 26/6/2008
From: Leeds
quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

Pre-ordered, man - Should arrive any day and then it's my Saturday Night double-bill with NINJA


Thats my Friday night double-bill.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rgirvan44

Just a reminder that this is now out in the UK on DVD and BR and well worth even just a rental.

Don't worry if you haven't seen part 2. The film doesn't acknowledge it.

Pretty much my favorite action movie of the year so far (second is Blood and Bone - another great DTV movie)


Blood and Bone is ace. Have you seen Undisputed II? If not thats some more Michael Jai White awesome-ness you should check out.

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Post #: 10
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 6/4/2010 4:47:57 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
Haven't seen Undisputed II yet. Going to check out Ninja first.

Love Blood and Bone. Never hear "Dance Hall Days" in the same light again.

Such a good time for DTV at the moment.

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Post #: 11
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 6/4/2010 9:13:51 PM   
GoodBadGroovy


Posts: 32
Joined: 30/12/2009
Definitely, there have been an increase in high quality DTV recently - Blood and Bone, Undisputed 2, UniSol 3.  I'm still suprised we don't see more young directors practicing their craft in DTV before moving up to cinema release films,  instead it seems the opposite, left to rot with failed directors or people just doing it for money.  It seems like a great place for action directors to practice, Blood and Bone is the perfect example of a film working within its limitations.  It's a simple, streamlined plot, well shot/choreographed action sequences that don't need a big budget.  

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Post #: 12
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 12/4/2010 12:00:59 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

Pre-ordered, man - Should arrive any day and then it's my Saturday Night double-bill with NINJA


You get to watch them Snake?

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Post #: 13
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 12/4/2010 12:30:03 PM   
Snake-Eyes


Posts: 9970
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: ZONE 2
quote:

ORIGINAL: Rgirvan44

quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

Pre-ordered, man - Should arrive any day and then it's my Saturday Night double-bill with NINJA


You get to watch them Snake?


Not yet. F**king PLAY.COM screwed me over - I ordered UNISOL on the 2nd April but it wasn't dispatched until the 9th! They reckon it may have sold out, hence the delay.

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Post #: 14
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 12/4/2010 3:11:31 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rgirvan44

quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

Pre-ordered, man - Should arrive any day and then it's my Saturday Night double-bill with NINJA


You get to watch them Snake?


Not yet. F**king PLAY.COM screwed me over - I ordered UNISOL on the 2nd April but it wasn't dispatched until the 9th! They reckon it may have sold out, hence the delay.


That sucks. Hope you get it soon. I got mine from ASDA for 13 quid  (the BR mind) - looks great!

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Post #: 15
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 12/5/2010 6:17:01 PM   
Snake-Eyes


Posts: 9970
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: ZONE 2
Well, my blu-ray finally arrived but with all the work O.T. I've been doing I haven't had time to watch it yet; hopefully this weekend. Now, I don't know how much truth there is behind this new rumour -

http://www.slashfilm.com/2010/05/12/universal-soldier-iv-announced-jean-claude-van-damme-and-dolph-lundgren-in-3d/

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Post #: 16
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 12/5/2010 6:40:27 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park

quote:

ORIGINAL: Snake-Eyes

Well, my blu-ray finally arrived but with all the work O.T. I've been doing I haven't had time to watch it yet; hopefully this weekend. Now, I don't know how much truth there is behind this new rumour -

http://www.slashfilm.com/2010/05/12/universal-soldier-iv-announced-jean-claude-van-damme-and-dolph-lundgren-in-3d/


YES!

Although not the 3D bit. Hoepfully that won't ruin the awesome.

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Post #: 17
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 13/5/2010 10:10:12 PM   
darth silas


Posts: 4949
Joined: 1/10/2005
From: My living room
Watched this last night and really enjoyed it.I usually dont go for DTV stuff because i find them to be low budget naff but this was a well made little actioner.Havnt seen any of the other Unisol movies since the original(not missing much from what iv been told) so i have to ask how is Lundgrens character there? Wasnt he chopped into tiny pieces in the first movie?

My favourite bit was the one take stalk and slash set piece where Van Damme take sout all those terrorists with a handgun and knife.Great stuff!


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RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 13/5/2010 10:14:49 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park

quote:

ORIGINAL: darth silas

Watched this last night and really enjoyed it.I usually dont go for DTV stuff because i find them to be low budget naff but this was a well made little actioner.Havnt seen any of the other Unisol movies since the original(not missing much from what iv been told) so i have to ask how is Lundgrens character there? Wasnt he chopped into tiny pieces in the first movie?

My favourite bit was the one take stalk and slash set piece where Van Damme take sout all those terrorists with a handgun and knife.Great stuff!



Lundgrens character was cloned.

I loved the Unisols + American taskforce sequence. Just seeing them trying desperately to hold off the Next Gen was pretty great.

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Post #: 19
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 17/5/2010 2:06:39 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
For all you UniSol fans, Outlaw Vern managed to get to speak to John Hyams, director of Regeneration, about the next films -

http://outlawvern.com/2010/05/14/a-little-clarification-about-universal-soldier-4/

It has shot up my most anticapted.

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Post #: 20
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 17/5/2010 2:10:09 PM   
Kazuya


Posts: 7978
Joined: 23/8/2006
From: The Eighth Dimension c/o Buckaroo Banzai
Sounds good, except for the 3D. But Regeneration was good fun, nicely made, I'd like to see Hyams have another go. More Lundgren though.

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Post #: 21
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 11:48:00 AM   
MoBiUGeArSkIn


Posts: 385
Joined: 3/10/2005
I watched Regeneration for a second time last night. It is bloody good.

Dare I say... better than the original.

I hadn't seen the original for a long long time but after purchasing Degeneration (for a laugh) I bought that too. Watched it. Was cheesier than I remembered. Stuck on Degeneration thinking it would be fun shit... but ended up being genuinely awesome!

Gritty. To the point. Well acted. Intense pace. Terrific, pounding action scenes.

I love that Hyams is up for another film or two. It's easy to forget the DTV sequels ever happened. I kinda just look at Regeneration as Universal Soldier 2, scrap the other shit. It ain't needed.

I do wonder if Hyams can top himself with the follow up though. Regeneration... I was not expecting. Now I'm expecting.

< Message edited by MoBiUGeArSkIn -- 18/5/2010 11:49:07 AM >


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Post #: 22
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 11:51:41 AM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
Hyams was brought in last time mid -production and did as much as he could to improve the film. Dolph wasn't going to do it until Hyams did a script re-write - and remember he was only there for a week last time. Dolph and Hyams did a commentary together and you could sense real excitiement between them - really looking forward to seeing what Hyams can do with full control of the production.

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Post #: 23
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 12:01:30 PM   
MoBiUGeArSkIn


Posts: 385
Joined: 3/10/2005
I hope it goes well. I've never understood why this franchise went so bad after the first film, it's a really solid setup for good action. But they totally blew it with those sequels staring Matt Bataglia, or whatever his name is. And "The Return" with Michael Jai White... WTF was that all about.

Regeneration went completely the other way and kicked ass!

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Post #: 24
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 12:15:29 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
quote:

ORIGINAL: MoBiUGeArSkIn

I hope it goes well. I've never understood why this franchise went so bad after the first film, it's a really solid setup for good action. But they totally blew it with those sequels staring Matt Bataglia, or whatever his name is. And "The Return" with Michael Jai White... WTF was that all about.

Regeneration went completely the other way and kicked ass!


I don't count the tv movies - they are a seperate entity. As for The Return, the problem there was it was a JCVD movie first, and a UniSol movie second. And it sucked.

Regeneration ignores these movies, and so will I.

I like how in the first one it is about a machine learning to be human again, and in this one it is about that human not fitting in, and needing to become the machine.

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Post #: 25
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 12:19:06 PM   
Kazuya


Posts: 7978
Joined: 23/8/2006
From: The Eighth Dimension c/o Buckaroo Banzai
quote:

ORIGINAL: Rgirvan44

Hyams was brought in last time mid -production and did as much as he could to improve the film. Dolph wasn't going to do it until Hyams did a script re-write - and remember he was only there for a week last time. Dolph and Hyams did a commentary together and you could sense real excitiement between them - really looking forward to seeing what Hyams can do with full control of the production.


I think I'm gonna have to get a hold of this on Blu now.

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Post #: 26
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 12:21:01 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
quote:

ORIGINAL: Kazuya

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rgirvan44

Hyams was brought in last time mid -production and did as much as he could to improve the film. Dolph wasn't going to do it until Hyams did a script re-write - and remember he was only there for a week last time. Dolph and Hyams did a commentary together and you could sense real excitiement between them - really looking forward to seeing what Hyams can do with full control of the production.


I think I'm gonna have to get a hold of this on Blu now.


I have the Blu - it looks pretty great. That Red camera is really impressive.

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Post #: 27
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 2:17:38 PM   
Kazuya


Posts: 7978
Joined: 23/8/2006
From: The Eighth Dimension c/o Buckaroo Banzai
Yeah, I read the review on blu-ray.com, for the lowdown on the picture quality, looks pretty good.

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Post #: 28
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 9:19:29 PM   
Rgirvan44


Posts: 19049
Joined: 10/3/2006
From: Punishment Park
I decided to watch it tonight. The stripped down story really does help.

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Post #: 29
RE: Universal Soldier 3: Regeneration - 18/5/2010 9:47:33 PM   
Kazuya


Posts: 7978
Joined: 23/8/2006
From: The Eighth Dimension c/o Buckaroo Banzai
Ordered the Blu a couple of hours ago. Good 80s style mayhem.

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