On the one hand, NIGHT SIEGE PROJECT: SHADOWCHASER 2 is an aggressively directed and sleekly photographed bone-cruncher in which a robot temporarily proves he's mankind's superior. On the other hand, the script is one of those predictable comme il faut affairs that allow ample breathing
space for mayhem but little time for cleverness or wit.
Tension runs high at Raikon Nuclear Center after the President of the USA orders the dismantling of the classified COBRA project. Facility supervisor Laurie Weber (Beth Toussaint) must contend with threat-dropping boss Mr. Reiman (Jeff Fannell), latchkey preteen Ricky (Danny Hill), Uriah Heep
computer expert Joe Hutton (Todd Jensen), and inebriated janitor Frank Mead (Bryan Genessee) whom she's just fired for insubordination. When she and her son return to the office for some files on Christmas Eve, she stumbles upon a conspiracy of terrorists in league with Hutton. Massacring most the
Raiskon staff, the cold-blooded invaders propose reprisal against Uncle Sam unless two fellow extremists are released from jail. Sensing this is a delaying cover-up for a more sinister scheme, Weber hides her voice-activator chip in a locket and denies the guards access to the nuclear vault. In
actuality, the mastermind of the takeover is an android (Frank Zagarino) who's engineered this coup in order to steal COBRA and escape with the 400-million dollar bomb through an abandoned missile tunnel. Although Weber and Mead elude the super-robot's minions, both Ricky and the coveted voice
chip are captured. After the President orders an airstrike on Raikon, Weber and Mead electrocute the android, who's already gunned down Huttton. Escaping Raikon Center before it blows up, Weber, Mead, and Ricky climb out to safety and exit via a police helicopter.
Flexing their rugged individualism, the heroes of NIGHT SIEGE not only outfox a super-droid but also triumph over their own backstabbing government. On a purely visceral level, it's exciting to watch the steroidal-looking robot challenge the equally pumped-up anti-hero Mead, although both their
bodies are so perfectly sculptured it's hard to tell which actor is playing a replicant superman. Because the plot is so anemically familiar, it's fortunate that the director has a knack for creating suspense with tracking shots and use of off-screen space; you never know from which direction
Weber and Mead will get knocked about. Generating pulse-quickening thrills in its martial-arts slugfest, NIGHT SIEGE does its best to juice up its government bashing and generic anti-terrorist thriller plot.
Hampered by the script's propensity for James Bond-style double entendres and by the director's over-reliance on slow-motion for the slaughter scenes, this foray into terrorist paranoia produces enough casualties to qualify as rousing, bloodthristy fun for genre devotees. And you've got to give
this over-muscled adventure credit for bumping off a Santa Claus at a Christmas Party and for attempting to suffocate a child in a pressure chamber. That's entertainment! Followed by PROJECT: SHADOWCHASER 3000.(Graphic violence, substance abuse, extreme profanity.)
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- Released: 1994
- Rating: R
- Review: On the one hand, NIGHT SIEGE PROJECT: SHADOWCHASER 2 is an aggressively directed and sleekly photographed bone-cruncher in which a robot temporarily proves he's mankind's superior. On the other hand, the script is one of those predictable comme il faut aff… (more)