And by "spy-fi", of course, I am referring to that subgenre that mixes espionage with elements of science fiction (the recent TV series "Alias" being a good example of that). "Operation Atlantis" begins as a spy movie, with agent George Steele intercepted at the airport of Rome en route to his vacation in Japan by IRU, an organization dedicated to collecting and studying uranium. It seems that large supplies have been found in North Africa, but local gangs have taken hold of them. Steele agrees to go there to investigate, but he gets more than he bargained for, because it turns out the lost city of Atlantis might just be located very close to the bad guy's fort! Here the movie turns towards sci-fi, as Atlantis is protected by a radioactive shield, which however can be countered by wearing special space suits! Once Steele and his female partner are inside Atlantis, they soon discover that its ruler has - like almost everyone else in the film - his own secret agenda. This spy / sci-fi fusion sounds more fun than it is in this case; the film is often dull and unexciting. The special effects are also not so special. But it has its moments too, like a climactic car chase (back in Rome) with 5 cars involved! George Steele is actually a pretty forgettable character: he is little more than a pawn most of the time, and he is overshadowed by the three women of the film. Besides, it's hard to feel much sympathy for a man who rudely interrupts a catfight not once, but twice! ** out of 4.
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