Wednesday, January 25, 2012
2020: Texas Gladiators (1984)
The year is 2020 and survivors grasp on to life and what little bit of organized society and humanity still exists in the shadow of an atomic holocaust. The land is barren and desolate and gangs fight for women, money and land. The Rangers are a group with a goal or restoring some sort of order to the world and that means kicking the collective ass of all these freaks and baddies.
The film opens in a nondescript run down old building where one of the gangs have captured a priest and two nuns and are forcing themselves upon the nuns and torturing the priest. The Rangers arrive and even more hell breaks loose as they clear out the building of the gang, where they find one captive woman, a beautiful blond. One of The Rangers forces himself upon her and when the others find him they kick him out for breaking the rules and their trust. Nisus (Al Cliver) bonds with the woman who tells him of a place where society still exists just 3 days from where they are.
Now in Texas at a refinery/plant where a nice organized little town has been built around and the occupants try to carry on life. Nisus and his new love, Maida (Sabrina Siani) help raise Maida's daughter who is about seven years old, until the town falls under attack by a motorcycle gang. After fending them off in a lengthy gun fight the gang calls in the reinforcements which is a uniformed militant group armed with futuristic bulletproof shields that have giant holes in the middle so they can still fire their weapons... the giant holes are still bulletproof though. The militant group's leader enslaves the town and forces them to work the mines. He sends his top bounty hunter to kill The rest of the The Rangers. Nisus is killed when he breaks free from captivity and tries to kill the man that raped his woman but is quite easily killed due to being outnumbered.
The Rangers now want to save the town to restore some peace and order to the war torn world and the rest of the movie is basically a big fight scene spanning what has to be hundreds or thousands of miles. The Rangers realize they can't kill the militant group who has the futuristic weapons so they enlist the help of a local Native American tribe after they prove they're strong enough. When the warriors reach the town to free them another big fight breaks out for control of the town and the Natives really show their worth and help take down the militants.
2020: Texas Gladiators is another Joe D'Amato ripoff that he made his living off of. The film is endlessly violent and moves at a very brisk pace which are the main strong points of the movie. It doesn't get many points for story or writing as it is very jumpy from major scene to major scene. Just when you think Nisus is the main character he's killed off with very little to-do about it and we have a new main character. There are of course some flaws in logic but none bigger than those futuristic bulletproof shields that can stop bullets even where there isn't actual shield but the Indian's arrows go right on through? That doesn't make a bit of sense to me but this is the fun nonsense we're faced with.
The acting isn't really good but gets the job done, if you're expecting award winning stuff you should just move right along. There should be plenty of boobs and blood to keep you mildly entertained for the duration, if only a better story had been put together this could have been a nice standout. Instead 2020: Texas Gladiators will forever be lumped into the middle of the pack of these Mad Max ripoffs.