Saturday, November 26, 2011

Syngenor (1990)

The late 80s and early 90s were a time of trying to figure out what the fuck was going on with horror and Sci-Fi. The slasher run had been crap for a while and even the Alien rip offs were abundant by 1990. Syngenor will get lumped into the Alien ripoff category. The film revolves around a Classified project about a SYNtheszied GENetic ORganism. This Syngenor is a super soldier built to fight the next world war in the desert climates of the Middle East. After some shady doings, one of the prototypes breaks loose and all hell breaks loose. The head of the operation Carter Brown(David Gale of Re-Animator), loses his shit and decides everybody dying would be the best option. The building becomes a war zone with cyborgs and people fighting for survival, and for an end to the project and total destruction to the Syngenors.

Syngenor is directed by George Elanjian Jr. who did this film and a few TV series and documentaries. His lack of storytelling in feature films is evident as the entire run time of over 100 minutes is jumpy. Characters are never fully developed and neither is the story except in a very bare bones way. We find out what can kill the cyborgs early on but it is hardly brought into play in the story until the very end. The movie is best viewed as a shitty B-movie than anything serious. It does work on the level of a bad, over the top B-movie to a certain extent. The story sucks, but some of the characters, especially David Gale of Re-Animator fame is fucking insane in the best possible way. He would die from complications in heart surgery a short time after this film was released but he made a memorable impression here. He certainly made better, but aside from the classic H.P. Lovecraft adaptation I don't know if he made a more memorable role than in Syngenor. The charm of this movie comes in just how shitty is.

This is a so-bad-its-good movie through and through. I found out it is a sequel just before starting it and it made little difference. There is enough setup for this to be a standalone movie and plenty of insanity and ridiculousness to carry anyone that can appreciate such things through to the end. The monster design is actually pretty decent (you'll be able to tell the borrowed look from movies such as Alien and Creature From The Black Lagoon without any trouble) and the effects aren't bad. The movie on a whole is just lacking. It isn't hammy enough to be fun, it isn't suspenseful enough for the horror, it isn't smart enough for the Sci-Fi.

David Gale is really the reason to watch because he is seriously out of his mind in this movie. Other than him it is messy, and underwhelming with entertaining bits sprinkled throughout.


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