With a reach that far exceeds its grasp, this science fiction cheapie from Andrew Bellware suffers from grandiose ambitions notwithstanding its frequent mocking self-aware campiness.  Android Insurrection opens with an informational spiel about the wonders of robotic labor-saving devices which have supposedly ended war and other human struggles, but then follows this with a matter-of-fact but ominous litany of caveats about robotics safety that sound like the scary side effects at the end of a prescription drug commercial.  Set in the twenty-third century, after North America has been reduced to desert and artificial intelligence has turned against humanity, the plot concerns a mission to retrieve a set of pretty, pink-haired androids from an underground research facility guarded by spider-like killer robots.

Based on an “original” story by Nat Cassidy, Android Insurrection bears obvious resemblances at various moments to such films as The Terminator, Alien, Hardware, Crash and Burn, and even Star Wars with the inclusion of light-sabers.  These comparisons, alas, do Android Insurrection no favors and only serve to highlight its pitiful poverty by contrast.  The effects, while often better than amateurish, seldom interact convincingly with the living performers and thus minimize the intended impact of the action sequences.

Momentary suspense is accomplished with the suggestion that one character on the team of robot-fighters may be a robot herself; no serious attempt is made to capitalize on this potential interest-hook, however, and the remainder of the story meanders with little sense of purpose or worthwhile stakes for the viewer.  The acting, too, is inconsistent, and occasionally detracts from what might have been a more seriously committed and convincing film instead of a video document of paradoxically over-ambitious Generation X underachievement.

2 of 5 possible stars.  ICA’s advice: see Cherry 2000 again instead.

[WARNING: POTENTIAL SPOILERS]

Ideological Content Analysis indicates that Android Insurrection is:

5. Antiwar.  Nuclear weapons appear to have lain waste to the planet.

4. Feminist/pro-slut.  Approximating slasher “final girl” structure, Android Insurrection provides one noteworthy survivor in Foxwell (Virginia Logan), a tough, nosering-sporting, midriff-bearing Generation-X chick who wields a phallic EMP grenade with panache.

3. Racist!  Fulfilling wacko survivalist and paintballer fantasies of a vanilla dawn, Android Insurrection, contrary to evident demographic trends of today, depicts a future America populated almost entirely by young, attractive, gun-toting white people, with only one light-skinned Hispanic cutie (Juanita Arias) to complement the otherwise pure, creamy uniformity of the gene pool.  A Hitler-mustached, German-accented nerd named Bellware (after the director, but played by David Ian Lee) gives the combat team its orders.  Undesirables, we can only assume, have been eradicated through a perfection of the AIDS virus or some other nefarious eugenics coup.  Android fifth-columnist agents among the city-dwelling humans (see no. 2), meanwhile, are to be granted “special protections” – clearly an insensitive reference to the necessary progress of affirmative action in the present “post-racial” age.

2. NWO-alarmist.  The most interesting portion of the film may be the epilogue in which an artificial intelligence informs citizens that it is now in control and that, moving among them, undetected, are sleeper agents, secret robots, who could even be their friends and family members, and who at the proper time will move to implement the policies of the new order.  Among the robot commandments are that humans of “subnormal” and “supernormal” capacity are, Procrustes-wise, to be sent to a state facility “for modification”.

1. Neo-Luddite.  Technology is evil.  Your toaster hates you and will destroy you if you allow it.

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