It's Friday, which means it's Sci-Fi Squad Movie Club time. I'm sure you know the drill by now, but if not, here's how it works. On Friday we assign a sci-fi flick as a sort of weekend cinematic homework. You have until Monday to watch said sci-fi flick. On Monday we all gather around the virtual watercooler and discuss what we thought about it. Sound fun? It is. Especially since this week's assignment is...

Trancers (aka Future Cop) (1985)
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Directed by Charles Band (the rich man's Lloyd Kaufman and the poor man's Roger Corman), Trancers stars stand-up comedian Tim Thomerson and America's second-string sweetheart, Helen Hunt. The film's villain is Michael Stefani, an actor who played small parts in a number of TV shows before landing this gig. Trancers was his last acting role, but don't let that dissuade you!

What's it about?

Jack Deth (Thomerson) is a noir-ish detective who travels from 2247 to current day (or, at least, current day as of the year this film was released) to track down fellow time-traveler Martin Whistler (Stefani), a criminal who uses psychic powers to create zombified followers (the titular trancers) to do his evil bidding.

Why should you watch it?

Despite (or perhaps as a result of) "borrowing" heavily from Blade Runner and The Terminator, Trancers it is generally regarded as one of the better films Charles Band has been involved with (although the praise often comes in backhanded form). For example, The Science Fiction, Horror and Fantasy Film Review calls the movie " an amazingly unpretentious and even rather entertaining film." Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings says "I must admit that I found this one rather enjoyable, despite the fact there's a little voice whispering in my ear telling me that this is a serious lapse of taste." And Stomp Tokyo describes Trancers as "surprisingly watchable."

In addition, this film kicked off a six-film series, so if you love it, you'll be able to further explore the world and the characters.

Anything else?

I'm not sure how available this film will be at Blockbuster, but it is available to stream on Netflix Instant. Here's the trailer:

You have your assignment... see you on Monday!
categories Features, Sci-Fi