New on Blu-ray/DVD from RLJE Films/Image Entertainment!
SPARE PARTS (2020)
Directed by Andrew Thomas Hunt.
Written by David Murdoch, Svet Rouskov.
Starring Julian Richings, Michelle Argyris, Emily Alatalo, Kiriana Stanton, Chelsea Muirhead, Ryan Allen, Jason Rouse, Kathryn Kohut, Erin Noble, Kevan Kase, Josh Maloney, James Eddy, Geoff Scovell, Matt Connors, Bruce McFee, Lewis Hodgson, Morgan I. Bedard, Tyler Williams, Ilan Rosenberg, Eric Daniel, Joseph Wibe
An all-girl punk band is harassed and tricked into being captured after an especially aggressive gig by a fanatical society which holds gladiatorial games to appease ancient gods. After their capture, each of the band members have an arm severed and replaced by an edged weapon, which basically ruins their career as musicians. Though they are at each other’s throats, the band must reinvent themselves and fight weekly in order to survive these games. They’ll need to use their guts, wits, and feminine wiles to survive these arena games lead by the Emperor (played by ANYTHING FOR JACKSON’s Julian Richings).
This film swings for the fences, I’ll tell you that. There’s a low fi charm to the way this film really pays attention to the tumultuous relationships between the bandmates and how they evolve once imprisoned to fight in the arena games. Each member of the band has their own backstory and challenges once in the games and director Andrew Thomas Hunt allows each of them screen time for the audience to develop an attachment to them. On a base level, SPARE PARTS delivers some solid violence and potent gore every chance it gets. There’s either a kill or a mutilation every five or so minutes, so this one is anything but boring.
The acting, well…everyone says their lines ok, but most of the time I can envision the writer at a keyboard writing the tough gal threats spouting from these tough gal’s mouths. If the relationships are not cliched, they are over the top and utterly melodramatic which made it hard to take any of this story seriously. But hey, it’s got scantily clad babes in leather and weapon arms kicking ass, this is not the type of movie you go for to find depthy issues.
I’d categorize SPARE PARTS as dumb fun. It’s got all kinds of guts, gore, and grossness, but the action is poorly choreographed, though potent in the carnage that comes from it. The gals are fun, but cliched and spouting cartoonish dialog. SPARE PARTS is amped to such cartoonish levels that you just can’t believe the heavy emotions the story is trying to convey. I think if this one would have taken itself a little less seriously, it would have made for a much stronger movie. These are very beautiful ladies battling for their lives, mechanical limbs and all, but whenever lines are delivered, it’s a challenging watch. As is, see SPARE PARTS for the gore, the violence, the babes, and the usual strong performance from actor Julian Richings. I did kind of love the song the band, dubbed MS. 45, played which was also called MS. 45. Nice homage as well as a kind of kick ass track.