Saturday, March 15, 2008

Chopping Mall

This is a cheesy little horror flick from the mid 80's that never really picked up at the box office but made a killing in the world of VHS home video. It starts out with a demonstration by mall security, showing their latest and most efficient security system ever. This new system consists of steel doors that close and don't open till morning, plus three bulletproof robots that are ridiculously over armed. They have lasers that can cut through steel and can shoot poison darts and from time to time employ some explosives as well. The demonstration ends with those famous last words... "Absolutely nothing can go wrong.". First of all, what mall has such a bad crime rate that they have to have solid steel bank doors and three murderous robots? Second of all, that line "Absolutely nothing can go wrong" pays homage to (is stolen from) the last line to a famous movie called Westworld, another film about robots going berserk. Lightening strikes the robot recharger and causes the Killbots (I mean, the Protector Series 101) to malfunction. It just so happens that on this very night, a bunch of stupid mall employees decide to have a late night party (orgy) in the furniture store. They plan to disperse before the doors lock, but the robots keep them busy and before you can dump this movie in the can, the doors close and they are locked in for the night. This pack of teens seems to be able to destroy at least two Killbots before all the kids are killed off, yet one lone survivor named Allison lives and there's still one Killbot left. A funny side note to this is that every time that a robot kills a kid, the robot says "Have a nice day." Allison has an idea, she makes a big mess in the paint shop with paint and turpentine, lures the Killbot inside and throws a flare at him, but not before saying "Have a nice day!". Another strange similarity in this film is the lead actress Kelli Maroney. She played Samantha in the movie "Night of the Comet", and in that film her dad was a Marine and had taught her to use firearms. In this film, she's a crack shot and when this is noticed, she says "My dad's a Marine." Plus, there's a cameo of Mary Woronov near the beginning of the movie. Mary Woronov also played a prominent character in Night of the Comet. One thing that kept me laughing (the only thing) throughout the film are the painfully obvious stunt doubles. Cheap wigs that bear little resemblance to the actors hair and bodies that didn't really match in weight or stature. A mushy ending is tacked on to the end. Allisons blind date for the evening (orgy partner) who was thought to have been killed already, shows up alive with a bloody roll of toilet paper stuck to the back of his head. They hug, the end. Awwwwww. The movie was originally released to bad reviews with the title of "Killbots", but when it tanked, they re-released it with a punchier (and totally misleading) title. But it does have a great tagline... Chopping Mall: Where shopping can cost you an arm and a leg. A good tagline is always appreciated... no matter how badly the movie sucked. Another stolen item featured in this movie is the sound that the Killbots make when they shoot their lasers. It's unmistakeably the same sound that the martian spaceships made in War of the Worlds.

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