Can it be so that making a commercial “blockbuster” with one million dollars is more controversial than spending a small country's national budget on one crappy, nationalistic mess? I think so, at least for those that think a low budget movie must look like Al Adamson (bless him by the way, a genius) or Fred Olen Ray (not sure I want him to be blessed, but what the fuck!).
What we have here is a case of international Jante Law (“Jantelagen” in Sweden). Let me quote from Wikipedia:
That’s what it’s all about, nothing else. The Asylum make low budget action-fests, monster-mayhems and disaster-flicks, using digital explosions and one or two washed-up has been-actors – and they’re proud of that, because they manage to make movies instead of whining like some catholic school girl stuck in Anton LaVey’s pool-party!
So why is Battle of Los Angeles better than Battle: Los Angeles? Here the reasons:
• Big scale battles. Where the blockbuster effectively transforms a fun invasion-flick to another of those Iraq-dramas with claustrophobic shots and boring let’s sacrifice ourselves for the humanity, the mockbuster offers nice wide-angle shots (steady shots too) of the action, big houses exploding – cheap effects of course – with around the same amount of lead actors like the blockbuster.
• The 1942 battle of LA! One of the things I was looking forward too when I first saw the trailer for the blockbuster was the connection to the 1942 incident. Which in the movie is more or less nada! The mockbuster, on the other hand, has a close connection to that incident and uses in a fun way with a few twists and turns.
• The blockbuster clearly has more aliens, but the mockbuster has one big-ass motherf**king alien which actually looks very cool and well-made. It stays in its ship, but if they ever make a sequel I hope they would unleash it on some poor city! Hell, just use the computer model in another production, it’s a damn fine monster!
• The mockbuster have a chick with a samurai sword. The blockbuster doesn’t.
Battle of Los Angeles is a cheap movie. It’s hard to say it even has a battle of LA, because most of it is set on a base outside LA and when they finally enter LA it’s more of an industrial sandpit. But it keeps up the pace and never, which should be banned in these kinda movies, divulges itself in pretentiousness and pretending to have a message or have something important to say.
But before I let you go, let me first explain that with “washed-up has been-actors” I mean actors that I love and care for a lot. Check them out in The Asylum’s movies and you’ll see that they’re giving it all! They playing a big role again, a hero or a bad guy, and they’re the star again – so they just don’t give a fuck about what movie it is, they makes the best they can and work hard for the little money they get.
That’s movie magic, friends.