Yikes. We want to make it clear here at Missile Test: we will never shit on someone for making a movie. It’s one of the most difficult creative endeavors one can embark upon, and finishing production is something that any filmmaker should be proud of. We, as a culture, need more movies, not less. That said, sometimes a movie isn’t just shitty. Sometimes it’s bad, bad, bad.
From 2013, Territory 8 comes to us via writer, director, and producer Kelly Schwarze. It follows a pair of research scientists, Dr. Eli Dolton and Dr. Tao Xing (Michael Tushaus and Heung Wong), as they try to find a cure to a biological weapon that was accidentally released in the area. The weapon, a virus, was developed by Xing, and he’s got a case of the guilts. As he should, because he’s also been doing a little spying for the Chinese, who are holding his brother hostage in exchange for his secret research.
Dolton and Xing spend the entire film in a cheapy sci-fi bunker. Shitty sci-fi veterans will know the type. Concrete and cinder block walls, some pipes, harsh lighting…basically, it looks as if Schwarze and company filmed this flick in a utility tunnel, which they may have.
But, what’s outside?
A little Nevada desert and a smattering of trailer park. That’s where the poor civilians infected by the virus live. They, led by two middle-aged guys named Sean and Victor (Stu Chaiken and Colin Ward), get wind of the research station and break in to force Dolton and Xing to share their cure.
It’s not the overall plot that makes this a difficult b-movie to watch. Rather, this is one of those low-budget flicks that suffers from being too sparse. It looks like Schwarze had next to nothing in resources. Combine that with acting talent on par with Monday night community theater, and talky, yet jumbled exposition, and even the hardier shitty movie fan will have trouble paying attention. Even the true sickos, the ones who have long standing accounts at somethingweird.com, will find little of value in this movie. It lacks all the gratuitous essentials that make sitting through a bad movie worth it. Instead, Territory 8 is a trial.
As such, Territory 8 falls way down into the lower depths of the Shitty Movie Sundays Watchability Index, displacing the execrable 2036 Origin Unknown at #435. I recommend staying away, but there has to be some movie masochist out there who gets off on being bored. This flick is for you.