Accion Mutante (1993)
Directed by Álex de la Iglesia
Starring Antonio Resines, Álex Angulo, Frédérique Feder, Juan Viadas, Karra Elejalde, Saturnino García, Fernando Guillén, Alfonso Martinez, Santiago Segura
This is one foreign film that will NEVER get an American remake. Why you ask? Maybe because the plot revolves around a group of handicapped terrorists that kidnap and murder the rich, the beautiful, and the famous. I think the ratings board just might have some issues with this one. Not to mention all of the protest groups out there just waiting for the next thing to pounce all over. Even more so that the terrorist group’s emblem is that of a figure in a wheelchair with a machine gun. Nice, huh? I thought so. So much so that I got the emblem tattooed on the back of my leg. True story.
So in case you missed it in the first paragraph, Accion Mutante is the name of a group of terrorist that target the attractive wealthy citizens in this futuristic dark comedy from the demented mind of Spanish director Álex de la Iglesia. The members of this crazy band of misfits comprise of all sorts of handicapped degenerates, that don’t seem to have a full brain between them. But now that their leader, Ramon, has been released from prison, they hope to get back to having better results in their terrorist escapades. Already, Ramon has a plan to kidnap the daughter of a wealthy baker mogul, at her wedding. But once the kidnapping is a success (well…sort of), the real terror begins!
The futuristic world that de la Iglesia creates is not a pretty one. The rich are the super upperclass, while the rest of the world lives in poverty and fifth, who seem to be always getting beat up by the military style police. The TV news is used in a similar manner to how it was shown in the Robocop films. There’s no problem with showing people being beaten by the police or even shot. There are tons of strange and wacky characters throughout this movie. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, he introduces someone even stranger than the last. A special nod to Spanish cult star Santiago Segura and his family of complete nutters.
This was director de la Iglesia first real movie, and showed even at a young age his sense of style and humor, which is dark, bloody, silly, and at times reminds me of Month Python. Some of the scenes are way over the top, with blood spraying everywhere. But the humor, no matter how dark and twisted the scene my be, is still there.
Another highlight here simply the look of it with the production design aspect. Even though this had a low budget, you’d never know just by looking at the spaceship set alone. It is simply incredible. But the dark and dirty world the director creates comes across with their spaceship. Not the fancy, clean and bright craft like in most sci-fi movies, but one that is dirty, slimy, and amazes the viewer that it could actually fly! Not to mention that the crew themselves would be smart enough to pilot the thing.
For the longest time, there were only shabby looking prints of this film, and even fewer that had sub-titles. But Metrodome finally released a great looking uncut print, in 2.35:1 widescreen format, in a region 2 PAL DVD. Not only does it have sub-titles, but there is also a great making-of featurette, which is about a half-hour long, covering many different aspects of the production. There is a lot of on-set footage, even with some rehearsals. They also talk about the production design, the costumes, the makeup, and just about everything else. The director is on camera quite a bit talking about the film. This featurette also has English subtitles.
If you are a fan of wacky and dark sci-fi movies, then you need to pick this up. And even if you’re a horror fan that doesn’t care for sci-fi, there is enough blood in here to keep you happy. Not to mention that it’s simply a great story, and a great movie. It’s well worth checking out, since you will NEVER see something like this coming out of Hollywood. It may take a little searching to find a copy of this, but it is more than worth your time and money.