After ex-cop and highly decorated war hero Chet Costa's Vietnamese girlfriend disappears, he accepts a risky mission: he shall blow up a bridge at the Vietnamese border to close the ...
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Fabrizio De Angelis
After ex-cop and highly decorated war hero Chet Costa's Vietnamese girlfriend disappears, he accepts a risky mission: he shall blow up a bridge at the Vietnamese border to close the Vietcong's line of communication. He's given a group of prisoners to accompany him. Already on the way there their helicopter is shot down; a march through the wilderness begins. When his soldiers recognize that they're effectively on a suicide mission, they decide to get rid of their Seargent and to flee to Bangkok.Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
It's THE DIRTY DOZEN meets KELLY'S HEROES in the jungle with a splash of BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI for good measure, all with substantially reduced budget necessitating the editing in of as much action footage from THE LAST HUNTER as possible.
Richard Hatch is back and leading a similarly ragtag group of ruffians deep into the jungle on a mission to blow up a bridge in this routine by-the-book action movie. The twists come in the form of his love affair with a Vietnamese double-agent while being a former policeman with his soldiers being convicts and killers eager to sacrifice him to the V.C. and make a getaway into Thailand. Otherwise the plot has no surprises and there is no cliché left unturned including the umpteenth example of a cowardly soldier who finds courage in the face of danger only to immediately be rewarded promptly and soundly with a fatal hail of bullets.
Being the connoisseur of bad Italian 80's Exploding Hut Action that I am, I just can't quite bring myself to recommend this little art-house offering. There's a couple good action sequences complete with a hearty dose of smiling Filipino extras flailing around on fire and being flung about by grenades but the action just plunders too much footage to really stand out.
Of Ignazio Dolce's spate of jungle dramas, this features the weakest action but arguably the strongest cast featuring Donald Pleasence in a role as Hatch's well-meaning superior that must have taken only 2-3 days tops to film. Donald is unfortunately dubbed by Geoffrey Copleston, who is close, but no cigar, and does his lazy performance no favors. Ted Rusoff and Robert Sommer are also on-hand to dub Vasilli Karis and David Light, plus fans of similar jungle adventures ROBOWAR and TORNADO will recognize David Brass and Mel Davidson in unbilled roles as unwilling members of Hatch's team.
While it's obvious that the film's title ANGEL HILL: THE LAST PLATOON is a cash-in on both PLATOON and HAMBURGER HILL in a mockbustery attempt to dupe audiences, there's no further resemblance to the American classics. It represents a sad come-down from the frenetic explosive action Dolce displayed the previous year on his loopy RAMBO/COMMANDO-inspired COMMANDER and somewhat less-so on his GREEN BERETS/SIEGE OF FIREBASE GLORIA knockoff LEATHERNECKS.
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