28 October 2008

The Vindicator

 Sad cropped box

The Vindicator
Canada/United States - 1984
Director - Jean Claude Lord
Key Video, 1986, VHS
Run Time - 1 hour, 32 minutes

Every scientific research lab has a snitch. You know, some punk who gets whiny and raises all kinds of stupid ethical objections and threatens to go to the cops or the press as soon as his coworkers start conducting some cutting edge sketchy research. In this case the head honcho of the lab, Dr. White, is designing genetically modified homicidal chimps whose readiness to kill he verifies like a ten -year-old, by poking them with sticks until they tear themselves to bloody pieces with rage.

Carl, the lab whiner threatens disclosure when White cuts his research budget and steals his chimps. Carl demands answers, and his innovative boss decides to give them to him by incinerating Carl in a giant dangerously “defective” kiln.

Carl’s pregnant new-age-synthesizer-playing wife thinks she is burying his corpse, but in an ironic twist of fortune for the high minded and cautious Carl, his crispy corpse has been kept alive in a nutrient solution to forward the very morally reprehensible research he sought to end.

White and his cronies soon attach Carl’s carcass to a cyborg-body with the very same automatic homicidal defense reflex programming they’ve been giving the chimps, which wouldn’t be a problem except that White’s technique for hypothesis verification is perhaps somewhat too provocative.

After Carl’s cyborg body, temporarily clothed in a gold foil Power Ranger suit is fired up, he flees the lab to feel sorry for himself and be alone with his feelings. Along the way the suit, and one hopes his temerity, is burned off, and there’s some vindication in store for ol’ Carl and his crusty scorched muscly robot body.

While trying to brace his wife for the inevitable infeasibility of homicidal cyborg domestic bliss, he reveals to her the gross pickled body within his metal exoskeleton and it seems for a moment that there may be some madness to his methods. Sadly, Carl’s version of vengeance is hand in glove with his programmed passive aggression and he repeatedly runs away and waits for his killflex to be provoked by White and his goons before killing them.

But let’s face facts here, Carl’s very existence proves that these experiments are vital and more work must be done creating an army of amoral murderborgs susceptible to provocative prodding. Thank god White has been saving each one of Carl’s vindicated victims for new cyborgs. What!? Once again Carl’s stupid bleeding-heart pacifism just pushed me over the line.

 UK clamshell insert from Dawn of the Dave.

This gorgeous Japanese sleeve comes courtesy of Miyaji at Japanese VHS Hell

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