out of 4
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Review by Jim VanFleet
1 star out of 4
Ah, the beauty of subtlety. Subtlety, that ever-glowing magic that
gives 2001: A Space Odyssey its magic. Subtlety, that elusive
fragrance that is, not surprisingly, missing from Starship Troopers. In
one of the most inept, ineffective films of recent years, we are invited
to a journey where the heroes prevail and the losers are ripped limb
from limb by alien spider-things. Question: Why , when designing
aliens, do we always go with bug-eyed arachnids? How about a slug that
just envelopes everything in its path?
Anyway, Starship Troopers takes place in the near future, when mankind can
travel to the stars and blow up things real good. We follow Casper Van
Dien as he begins storming after the "bugs." Aided by Denise Richards,
who, to her credit, has a fabulous body, they head out and try to get rid
of the bugs. They need the planet the bugs have inhabited, you see, and we
can't coexist. Why? Because they are ugly, and we are not.
I guess there might be more to it than that, but that wouldn't save
this movie. The problem lies in the film, which does not work in an Aliens
sort of manner. It works on the level of big special effects and
explosions. One scene involves these big, big bugs that somehow have
evolved the ability to shoot blue orbs out of their butt with amazing
precision. If you can believe that, then believe this: the people fight
with machine guns. No lasers. It's the future, we can travel to the
stars, but no lasers, or heat-beams. Oh, hydrogen-bombing the place isn't
an option either. Why? Because the people in the film are about as
intelligent as a canteloupe, that's why.
With characters this stupid, a plot this obvious, redundant special effects
(the first time I saw an alien was impressive; the seven hundredth time
got old), and godawful lines ("Kill 'em all," and the infamous
"NOOOOOOO!"), it's a wonder that Paul Verhoeven, of such films as Hollow
Man and Showgirls, was actually responsible. Well, it wasn't, but man
is it depressing. When you see Denise Richards with her stupid smirk on
throughout the whole movie, you wish for a gun, to use on them, and then
yourselves. Preferably a laser gun.
Copyright © 2001 Jim VanFleet
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