In Los Angeles a deadly plague called the 'Pandora' virus is stolen from a high-security installation, and the F.B.I. calls in Agent Alec 'Mac' Mckay to follow up the leads. A trained ... See full summary »
In Los Angeles a deadly plague called the 'Pandora' virus is stolen from a high-security installation, and the F.B.I. calls in Agent Alec 'Mac' Mckay to follow up the leads. A trained virologist, he discovers the culprit is one of the world's top researchers. He discovers the man has a safety box in a bank vault and a trap is laid to capture both the doctor and reclaim the virus. Meanwhile, Julie Hayes discovers her do-well brother Scotty has become involved in the plan to rob a bank... The very bank that the F.B.I. is now watching in their bid to reclaim the Pandora virus. An unwilling accomplice, Julie tries to alert the bank staff, unaware that the man she thinks is a bank teller is in fact Mac working undercover. Things go from bad to worse when the errant doctor, looking tense and terrified, arrives with a tall, blond-haired, leather-clad man whom the watching agents identify as St. Joy, the leader of the L.R.A., a well-known doomsday cult. St. Joy wants Pandora. He wants Pandora... Written by
This is the best film to come out of Roger Corman's studios in years. Director Brian Katkin does an amazing job with no budget. Clearly, he is a director to keep an eye on. Like his first film, the little seen nail biting thriller "If I Die Before I Wake", Shakedown keeps you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. It's a shame the budget does not support his intent. The timely plot, shot before the 9/11 homicide attacks, tells the story of a group of suicidal terrorists who steal a deadly virus, only to become trapped with a lone FBI Agent inside a building by a tremendous earthquake. While this set up may sound far fetched, (and at times, it is!), the director keeps things moving so fast you hardly have time to catch your breath. Think Die Hard meets Resevoir Dogs and throw in a little John Woo and you get the picture. If only director Katkin had Woo's budget and schedule, one can only imagine what he could do. The cast standouts are Ron Perlman (Blade 2, Star Trek Nemesis) who seethes with low key menace, Erica Eleniak (Under Siege) who brings intelligence and wit to what might have ordinarilly been just an "eye candy" role, and Wolf Larsen (LA Heat) who carries the hero role with ease. All in all, Shakedown is a fun, popcorn movie in the best Corman tradition.
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