Sometimes miracles do happen, and a shitty, straight-to-video movie finds enough success that it gets a sequel. If viewers of Cyber Tracker were left feeling a little wanting, if they felt like they needed more Don ‘The Dragon’ Wilson and more stiff androids with bottomless gun magazines, then they needn’t have feared. Wilson, director and producer Richard Pepin, and producer Joseph Mehri felt this emptiness — this animalistic need for more shitty action — and goodness gracious they filled it.
From 1995, Cyber Tracker 2 (sometimes spelled with a hyphen, and sometimes the two words are combined as one, depending on the source) again follows Dragon as Eric Phillips. He’s still a cop or something, only this time, having vanquished the evil Cybercore corporation in the first flick, the cyber trackers, robotic manhunting terminator ripoffs, are on his side. Wilson is out there hunting bad guys with Number 9 (Jim Maniaci), and doing a fine job. He’s also in a relationship with TV news broadcaster Connie (Stacie Foster).
Things begin to go wrong when Connie is kidnapped, and a cyber tracker using her likeness guns down the governor. Someone out there is trying to seize power, using cyber trackers to frame people for the crimes. That someone is Paris Morgan (Anthony De Longis), an unscrupulous businessman with megalomaniacal dreams. The main plot of the film follows Eric’s efforts to clear Connie’s name and stop the funny business with the cyber trackers. Along the way, a lot of bullets are fired. A shitload of bullets are fired. More bullets are fired in this 97-minute film than in some real wars.
Gun battles galore erupt all over Century City, Los Angeles, where much of this film was shot. Fox Plaza, which had a star turn as Nakatomi Plaza in Die Hard, appears prominently in this film, joining the litany of Hollywood shooting stars that end up in straight-to-video land.
There are gunfights inside, and there are gunfights outside. There are gunfights in tunnels and parking garages. There are gunfights in offices and restaurants. Everywhere this movie goes, eventually there is a massive gunfight. The cyber trackers are immune to gunfire, but that doesn’t stop everyone from just pouring it on them, and the cyber trackers give back in spades. It’s endless. Pepin and company seemed to have come to the conclusion that any stretch of film longer than a few minutes uninterrupted by gunfire was unacceptable. This is a great thing for us viewers. So many other bad movies exhaust what little budget they have in a single big action sequence, but this flick is full of them, start to finish. All of this had to cost money, and I’m happy that instead of just pocketing this cash, the filmmakers put it into the production. Sure, they could have spent this money on professional actors, but that would have cut into the gunfire budget. The filmmakers chose to use their resources in an orgy of noise and violence, and I salute them.
Being a shitty movie, while there is a lot of action, it’s hilariously inept. Bullets spark off of the faces of the cyber trackers, but leave no marks. Flesh and blood people stand less than twenty feet from each other and fire countless bullets with no hits. Reloading, when it is done at all, is for dramatic effect only. It’s the amount of action in this flick that is impressive, not its quality. Except for the explosions. Those are all fiery and satisfying.
The action threatens to be tedious by the end, but that didn’t stop Pepin. The only thing that is lacking in this movie are martial arts fights. Dragon, at one time, was a professional ass-kicker. Having him hide behind a gun all movie is unacceptable. He does get to kick a little ass in this movie, but not nearly enough. Every gunfight scene was an occasion to sneak in a little ass-kicking, and Pepin chose to mostly not do so. I would feel cheated if the rest of the package wasn’t such shitty gold.
This movie brings prime shittiness from the start to the credits. It takes place in the future — right around now, in fact — but one wouldn’t know it from all the early 1990s automobiles. The cop cars are especially bad. They look like used cars from a rental fleet that have been repainted by the production team.
There are many other moments of shitty filmmaking.
At one point in the film, Dragon is in a car chase. He maneuvers his pursuer into a fiery explosion, only the car that emerges from said explosion is a different make and model than the car that went into it. Magnificent.
In another scene, Dragon is in a fierce gun battle. One of the assailants is standing in front of a blue screen, only it isn’t being used to composite in a background. It’s just there being blue. Then when the bad guy gets shot, he flies backwards and viewers can see the pads he lands on. Glorious.
There are even laser beams.
This is a highly entertaining shitty movie. The acting stinks, but the dialogue wasn’t helping matters. As extensive as the action is, it’s no Schwarzenegger flick. But it has ambition and scale for the type of film that it is. It threatens on occasion to rise to the level of standard film mediocrity, but Pepin always managed to pull back in time and keep things shitty. This movie is so entertaining and so hopelessly bad that it has entered the Shitty Movie Sundays pantheon alongside such classics as Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone and Deep Blue Sea. The only question that remains is, why doesn’t Cyber Tracker 3 exist?
Cyber Tracker 2, believe it or not, is a better movie than Alien: Resurrection.