226. Firepower (1993)

fire

*The Warlock opens the door to his lair. He’s wearing a black leather jacket, ULTIMATE WARRIOR t-shirt, blue jeans, white sneakers and gargoyle shades. He’s holding a glass mug of pepsi*

Warlock: Welcome to my lair…welcome I don’t think so, but enter. Enter my lair if you dare. I’m your host The Warlock.

*Warlock levitates before walking into the lair*

Warlock: Tonight is a solo project but for the first time, I’m disappointed that neither Thug D, Neyzor Blades or Mr. America is with me. Tonight is FIREPOWER…the 1993 action/fighting movie starring Gary Daniels and none other than THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR!

*The Ultimate Warrior theme plays briefly as Warlock pumps his fist and runs around the room, somehow not spilling his drink. He then settles into the recliner*

Warlock: So let’s get this party started with Firepower.

 

Directed by Richard Pepin

Written by Michael January

 

*Warlock reads the tag-line*

Warlock: “You can enter the Hell Zone but you can never leave it.”

Warlock: Ah lovely, Escape From New York in 2007.

 

*Opening credits*

Warlock: Gary Daniels in the house.

 

*Its the year 2007, a newscaster says AIDS are making a comeback*

Warlock: Imagined if they were eradicated in 2002 like in the movie.

 

*Darren Braniff (Chad McQueen) and Nick Sledge (Gary Daniels) watch the news. Darren says “No glove, no love.”

Warlock: I gotta write that one down.

 

*Bill Russel ((Peter Gonneau) says police services were not provided in 1999 in the Hell Zone. In the 7 years since, the Hell Zone has turned into crime central*

Warlock: So Hell Zone is pretty much New York from Escape From New York? Lovely.

 

*Bill Russel says people need to clean up Hell Zone. Darren asks who’s going to clean it up. Nick says to drop a bomb on it*

Warlock: I gotta agree with Nick on that one.

 

*Nick and Darren are called into action. Mendez (Pablo Marz) is behind the crimes, Nick and Darren are on their way. The gang bangers car along with a cruiser flips over and explodes*

Warlock: Great, more exploding cars for no reason.

 

*The gang bangers are gunned down as Darren uses a “Smart” bullet. Another gang banger is arrested*

Warlock: Bad boys bad boys, watcha gonna do.

 

*Boone (Vanessa Hampton) complains that gas is up to 30 dollars a gallon*

Warlock: We’re headed that way.

 

*Darren and Nick bring in Mendez. The booking officer (Dennis Garber) tells them to uncuff him. Mendez record is processed as Darren brings up the charges. Nick says he resisted arrest. Mendez insults everyone and the booking officer says he’s resisting again so Nick bangs Mendez’ head against the desk*

Warlock: Hahahahaha

 

*Booking officer says Nick needs a hair cut. Boone gets in some g rated flirting with Nick as Darren playfully pushes him away.  Mendez is tossed in a cell as Nick tells him to have fun. Mendez calls him a dead man and Nick punches him*

Warlock: Hahahaha

 

*Captain Croy (George Murdock) tells Nick to get a haircut. Darren says his kid needs an evaluation and needs time off to help.  Croy says to check with scheduling. The booker says the cops captured The Swordsman (Jim Hellwig) and they’re rbinging him in*

Warlock: ITS THE ULLLLLLLLLLLTIMATE….WARRIORRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!

 

*Swordsman is brought in to book. Croy says they’ll need a security transport for him. His criminal recorded is as long as his arm and he starts fighting off the cops. Swordsman beats the crap out of the cops that arrested him. Swordsman hits a headbutt then slams the dude’s head into the desk. He’s eventually tazed and brought to a holding cell*

Warlock: Ultimate Warrior gets counted out.

 

*Mendez calls Swordsman “boss”*

Warlock: Heh, gang bangers take orders from the Ultimate Warrior, I love it.

 

*Swordsman’s gang plows through the police barrier to bail him out. He sits quietly as the gang bangers storm the station. Booking officer takes one out but is shot and killed. Nick takes out another gang banger. The gang enters the holding cell, Swordsman “Get me out of here….now!!!” Mendez is left behind*

Warlock: He’s nothing.

 

*Boone is shot and killed as Nick takes out the stragglers. Croy tells them to wait for backup but Darren and Nick take off in hot persuit of Swordsman’s gang*

Warlock: Ultimate Warrior as a heel for the first time since his Bladerunner days.

 

*Nick and Darren pursue the bus containing Swordsma’s crew. The bus shoots the police chopper out of the sky. Nick is blown off his bike but Darren picks him up, Nick says he’s going after them*

Warlock: And now we get to the Escape From New York portion of the movie.

 

*Nick and Darren enter Hell Zone and a male hooker (Stephen J McCarthy) say the suspect is in the club*

Warlock: Wish that was Adrian Street haha.

 

*The ring announcer (Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs) says to place their bets. Nick and Darren enter a club for tournament fighting. The Viper  (Art Camacho) prepares for battle. Drexal (Joseph Ruskin) is informed there are cops in the building with Swordsman behind him. Drexal says they’re free to enter…if they can play. Meanwhile Lisa (Alisha Des) tells them that she’s just a betting girl. A gangbanger and his buddy shoot Darren and Nick shoots them both dead. Darren is wearing armor so hes ok*

Warlock: What a narrow escape.

 

*Nick and Darren start cleaning out the bar looking for Swordsman. The crowd laughs at them. Nick says they don’t get any respect. Various strippers surround the duo and they walk off*

Warlock: They’re on duty.

 

*Announcer says Viper is against Mauler. Viper beats the shit out of him. Nick bets on Viper and calls them bozos*

Warlock: Hah.

 

*Viper and Mauler then use weapons and once again Viper wins. The bouncer (Nils Allen Stewart) tells Darren and Nick to pay to play*

Warlock: Nils looks like Kano from Mortal Kombat.

 

*Nick and Darren say the are on duty and leave. They go back to Croy and ask what the green vial is. Croy thinks its an AIDS vaccine. Nick and Darren want to go undercover to bust Drexal’s drug labs and vaccine hoarding.  Croy says if they get themselves killed, nobody is going to care but the union. Croy sends them off. Darren listens to the newscaster (Taylor Leigh) where another Hell Zone was raided but was a failure. Darren’s wife Sue (Kimberly Cockrell) yells at him for taking the dangerous mission. Darren yells back and Sue storms off after asking if he’ll be there for the evaluation. He says he can’t. Back in Hell Zone a death match between Swordsman and Professor Tanabe (Gerald Okamura). Swordsman beats the shit out of him*

Warlock: Wow.

 

*Professor rakes the eyes as the swords are distributed. They sword fight a bit before Swordsman wins by stabbing him to death*

Warlock: HERE IS YOUR WINNER…THE ULLLLLLLLLTIMATE…WARRIORRRRRRRR!!!!!

 

*Darren and Nick walk in to the lockerrom as the new Lethal Combat fighters. They get their own lockers. Chief Handler (Michael Gregory) says drinks are on the house and not to get too friendly with other fighters because they may fight one another. Swordsman walks in and laughs at Darren and Nick*

Warlock: “You guys are no Ho Kogan!”

 

*Nick wants to be called The Hammer, Darren is The Alley Cat*

Warlock: Greg Valentine is gonna be pissed.

 

*Darren hobnobs with Viper who says to check his next fight out. Viper faces Dr. Death in a non lethal match*

Warlock: In other words, nobody gets killed.

 

*Nick asks Darren if anyone will be likely to talk….if they survive*

Warlock: Well if they don’t survive, no one will talk.

 

*Viper wins the fight using nunchucks. Nick is up next as Viper grabs a towel, Darren congratulates Viper. Viper says a couple more wins will get him some real money. Viper’s real name is Joey. Darren playfully insults him and Nick counters that Darren may learn something. Nick is introduced as The Hammer and he does a split*

Warlock: Right out of Ring of Fire.

 

*Viper beats the crap out of his opponent as Drexal controls the weapons for the lethal portion. Viper refuses to use a weapon and still takes out his opponent with hand to hand tactics. Viper watches intently*

Warlock: Here is your winner…Gary Daniels!

 

*Nick celebrates in the back as Darren is up next. Darren must fight Stomper*

Warlock: Archie “The Stomper” Goulding would have been awesome right now.

 

*Stomper beats up Darren so Drexal sends him a shield. Darren knocks him out with the shield*

Warlock: Not bad, could be better.

 

*At the bar, Viper tells Darren and Nick that he’s just trying to feed his family.  Darren puts the moves on Lisa after Viper tells her she’s Drexal’s girl. She calls them neanderthals and leaves. They yuk it up as Viper leaves. Nick wants to question Lisa but also wants to check out Drexal’s palace. Darren goes to Lisa and she says she’s not interested in fighters because her last boyfriend died in a fight. Drexal comes over and tells Lisa to go do her job. Swordsman stands behind him as Drexal says to stay away from Lisa. Darren says sure*

Warlock: I hate jealous boyfriends.

 

*Darren plays Super Nintendo with his son and Sue still bitches at him*

Warlock: I loev how its supposed to be 2007 and he’s playing Super Nintendo. In real life XBox, Wii and the PS3 were the popular systems in 07. Little did anyone know in 1993.

 

*Sue tells Darren she can’t take it. She continues to berate him, steals the kid and leaves*

Warlock: What a bitch.

 

*Next day Nick and Darren catch the fights before Darren catches Lisa outside. Lisa has a black eye and Darren figures out Drexal did it. They share bonding moments as Darren says he’s got a son at home and a wife who doesn’t like what he does. He doesn’t want anything from Lisa but he gets a little nosey sometimes. He tells her to leave Hell Zone if she doesn’t like it before he leaves*

Warlock: This romance isn’t over yet.

 

*Nick says Swordsman is in tight with Drexal so there’s a connection with Swordsman’s gang. Meanwhile Handler pulls Darren aside and respectfully tells him to stay away from Lisa. Darren says he went out for smoke, Handler says that’s not healthy either. Darren then wins his next fight, barely*

Warlock: Love how they’re establishing him as the never say die babyface and Nick as the unstoppable ass kicker.

 

*Viper congratulates Darren. Nick then fights The Maniac and wins*

Warlock: This is turning into Bloodsport, forget Escape From New York.

 

*Darren and Viper talk more. Viper says something’s wrong with Darren and Nick, they’re not like the other fighters. Viper tells him he saw Drexal and Swordsman talking but is cut off by Handler saying he’s bumped up to the main event. Viper is excited because he wants the money. Viper is slated to face The Rocker*

Warlock: Which one, Shawn Michaels or Marty Jannetty?

 

*Rocker and Viper go back and forth before Viper gets the upperhand. Viper his denied his weapon as Rocker gets a scyth that he promptly buries in Viper’s back, killing him*

Warlock: Rocker wins…flawless victory.

 

*Darren and Nick are distraught at the bar. Lisa walks up and is nonchalant about it. Darren says Drexal was behind it. Darren says Viper was going to talk about a vaccine and she leaves. Nick says Darren may have blown their cover. Darren talks with Handler who says he’s not in it for the money, he lives there. Back at the station Darren says they have Lisa as a cover and Croy wants to take them off the case. Darren and Nick want to fight Lethal so they can crack the case, Croy finally relents. “Get some sleep, you both look like a piece of fried shit!”

Warlock: Hahahaha

 

*Mendez is supposed to be transferred to a high security prison but Swordsman’s gang springs him out*

Warlock: Great, now Mendez is gonna blow their cover.

 

*Mendez gets Darren’s home address, meanwhile back in Hell Zone. Lisa knows Darren is a cop and wants to help him*

Warlock: Oh shit…..

 

*Lisa tells Darren that Drexal is making the vaccine in an abandoned factory. She wants Drexal dead and Darren says he’ll get him. She kisses his cheek*

Warlock: He may have to marry her if Mendez is after Darren’s family.

 

*Sue sent their son Billy to be with his grandmother as Mendez enters Sue’s residence. Mendez shoots her dead*

Warlock: Darren is gonna be PISSED.

 

*2 random guys fight as Nick does a split in the back*

Warlock: Hooray, we got two guys that don’t fucking matter.

 

*Mendez reports to Drexal and spots Nick on the monitor, squealing that he’s a cop. Nick is scheduled to face The Stomper but Drexal changes it to a deathmatch between Nick and Swordsman*

Warlock: The big one on one fight comes 18 minutes early.

 

*Swordsman gets the early advantage in the fight but Nick fights back. Nick ducks under a clothesline and kicks Swordsman in the back. Swordsman then delivers a knee to the head.  Nick nips up and starts kicking away but Swordsman barely sells any of it. Drexal unlocks the sword for Swordsman and Nick does his best to fight back hand to hand. They trade right hands before Drexal says to end it. He instructs is computer geek to electrify the cage the fighters are in. Swordsman pushes Nick into the cage and it shocks him down.  Swordsman yells and reaches for his sword*

Warlock: Calling upon the power of the Warriorsssssssss

 

*Swordsman cuts Nick’s head off as Darren gets his gun. He starts shooting random goons as Handler tells him to get out of there*

Warlock: Wow, they actually killed off the main character, I’m stunned.

 

*Drexal watches security footage of Lisa kissing Darren and Drexal says to move it. Darren goes home to find his wife dead*

Warlock: Loses his partner and his wife on the same day, he is not having a good week.

 

*Croy asks what he can do for Darren. Darren says he’s going after Drexal and nobody is going to stop him. If he wants his badge, that’s how its going to be. Croy doesn’t want the badge, he wants Darren alive. Darren “Let me take care of that.”

Warlock: He’s gonna have to wipe out everybody by himself.

 

*Darren in full police uniform stops the arena after wiping out two guards. Drexal leaves a pre-recorded message that he’s got Lisa hostage. Mendez on the tape says “Hey officer Branniff” and the real Mendez in the cage says “Goodbye” and blows Darren away with a a shotgun*

Warlock: Alright, movie’s over.

 

*Mendez checks on Darren who’s armor saved him and he shoots Mendez dead. “You wish you asshole.”

Warlock: Weak dialogue.

 

*Darren storms the phony vaccine drug lab and silently kills one guard then another. Darren then opens fire on the guards as the scientists run for cover. Darren runs into Drexal’s office where he’s got Lisa at gunpoint. Darren says to let her go. Drexal tells Darren to drop the gun. Darren drops it as Swordsman appears behind him. Drexal says a deathmatch between Darren and Swordsman will decide the fate of Lisa*

Warlock: I will say that was awesome booking going into this. Nick was clearly the better fighter over Darren and if he couldn’t beat Swordsman, how the hell can Darren win?

 

*Swordsman puts the sword down to fight hand to hand. Swordsman beats the crap out of Darren with Darren trying to fight back. Darren grabs a piece of pipe but Swordsman throws him off*

Warlock: You’re going to have to outsmart him.

 

*They trade right hands as Swordsman gorilla press slams Nick down*

Warlock: Now its time for the big splash….oh wait…its a movie.

*Nick stands in front of the electric fuse box and Swordsman goes for the kill shot, but Nick moves and Swordsman electrocutes himself by stabbing the fuse box*

Warlock: Ultimate Warrior jobs to Darren, couldn’t put over the Macho Man but he’ll put Darren over.

 

*Drexal says Lisa is dead anyway and in one sudden move, Darren pulls the sword out of the wall and flings it, hitting Drexal dead center in the chest and impaling him*

Warlock: Oh come on…..not only would he have electrocuted himself, there’s no way that throw from that distance would have been that accurate.

 

*Darren pulls the sword out and Drexal falls 20 feet through a window to his death. Lisa cuddles with Darren. End credits*

Warlock: Kind of a weak ending but no matter, the bad guys got theirs.

 

The Warlock’s Assessment: Normally I’d give this a 4.5 for being cookie cutter but there were a few surprises that made me up the score. They had the balls to kill off Gary Daniels so there’s a .5 to bring it to 5. The fact they showcased the Ultimate Warrior for that long and he did his job gives this another .5. It was pretty much a cookie cutter B movie from the 90’s but the Warrior made it worth taking a look.

Final Grade: 5.5 out of 10 – Above Average.

 

*Warlock rises from the recliner*

Warlock: Ultimate Warrior was a character that we’ll never see again and it hasn’t been the same since he’s been gone. Still, seeing him again was nice and the movie itself wasn’t all bad. Its worth taking a look if you’re an action fan or a wrestling fan. That about wraps up another above average adventure….have a pleasant evening.

*Warlock runs around the room as the Ultimate Warrior theme plays and out of the lair*

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