Tuesday, July 30, 2013

SyFy vs. The Mynd: Iron Invader (2011)

aka Metal Shifters

"Paul Ziller, most dependable of my Knights of the Dependable Table", Mrs SyFy, the president of SyFy said one day while tending to her CGI roses, "I want to see a movie where that Iron Giant from the animated movie kills US small town people, but I can only give you enough of a budget to animate your core CGI monster for three or four scenes. Afterwards, you'll have to make do with a heap of moving scrap metal".

"Your wish is my command, Mrs President", Ziller replied, scrawled down a script on a CGI napkin during the course of about ten minutes spent on the toilet, and started shooting in the oasis of low cost filmmaking we know and love as British Columbia the very next day. Did he somehow hire actual actors? Even somebody who was on a Star Trek show? You bet he did.

What's even more curious than this quite obviously true story my imaginary five year old nephew told me in secret is that Iron Invader is a perfectly okay little movie, with a handful of somewhat exciting scenes in its first half (as long as the Iron Invader is still whole), culminating in many moments of precious idiocy once the core cast hunkers down in a bar surrounded by dangerous, animated pieces of small metal that want to play zombie apocalypse with them; Ziller still directs that part of the film as if it were serious SF horror, but, you know what, animated pieces of metal don't really look very threating, particularly once the cast learns their might can be conquered by spraying them with alcohol.

And yes, Iron Invader's climactic fight really does consist of actors trying very hard not to laugh killing the monster of the week with bottles of alcohol. It's quite the thing, really, unless you had hopes of, oh, I don't know, giant metal monster action.

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