Amateurish garbage, cobbled together from a seemingly half-finished negative. The result? Perhaps the worst film ever made.
22 July 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Make no mistake about it, The Lucifer Complex is a genuine contender for the title of worst movie ever made. The most remarkable thing is that recognised actors have been persuaded to appear in this dismal offering – it's quite depressing to see the likes of Robert Vaughn, Keenan Wynn and Aldo Ray appearing in such cheap, inept, amateurish rubbish. The Lucifer Complex bears all the hallmarks of a film that hasn't been fully completed, with irrelevant stock footage and additional scenes crudely inserted into the existing material in a desperate bid to cobble together a releasable film. Alas, everything is so clumsily done and so achingly inept that one is left wishing that the film hadn't been released at all.

In the near future, an explorer on an island discovers a hidden cave containing computers full of old archives. After watching some war footage, he stumbles upon a film showing the adventures of a secret agent on a top secret mission. The agent Glenn Manning (Robert Vaughn) is sent to investigate something called the "Lucifer Problem". Manning crash lands on a remote island and discovers a camp emblazoned with Nazi swastikas, run by a gang of neo-Nazis. The island natives are kept as slaves, and a group of women are held prisoner there too. Manning soon discovers that the women's bodies are being used to give birth to genetically cloned foetuses of various world leaders. He befriends April (Merrie Lynn Ross), one of the women held in the camp, and together they try to stop the sinister plot. Their quest doesn't become any easier when they learn that their Nazi enemies have succeeded in cloning Adolf Hitler himself!

Very little of The Lucifer Complex makes sense. For one thing, if our explorer is watching all this as if it is actual archived footage of a spy mission, then who the hell do we suppose filmed it all?? In fact, the whole explorer subplot seems suspiciously unrelated to the film and one is left convinced that it has been included as an afterthought to stretch the film's running time a little, and perhaps as an attempt to provide a way of linking the rather choppy main narrative. Vaughn tries to give a professional performance in the midst of all this, but his efforts are continually shot down by the very non-professional work behind the cameras. The characters are completely uninvolving, the audio poor, the camera work hopelessly wobbly, and the action sequences incompetently edited. Sometimes this sort of film becomes a cult favourite amongst collectors of bad movies (Plan 9 From Outer Space, Robot Monster, etc.) but this one slumps way below the level of "so-bad-it's-good". It is abysmal, pure and simple. It would receive a minus rating if this were possible, and even that would be generous!
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