ISSUE #8 FEB 06

Geoffrey Wilkinson

Starship Troopers

24th March 2004
Starship Troopers Poster
reviewer: Geoffrey Wilkinson
rating: 5 out of 5
directed by: Paul Verhoeven
written by: Robert A. Heinlein (book) Edward Neumeier (screenplay)
starring: Casper Van Dien, Dina Meyer, Denise Richards, Jake Busey
genre: Sci-Fi Action
released: 2nd January 1998

From the director of Robocop this was a great film when I saw it at the cinema for my 15th birthday loads of guns aliens and even nudity for all tastes. When released on video the rating was pushed up to an 18 but that didn't really bother me. It is one of a select few films I can watch over and over again in the same sitting. Full of action and some excellent characters the film has a well deserved cult following in science fiction circles.

Happy student life
Happy student life

Very loosely based on the book of the same name the film follows the journey of Johnny Rico a student in from wealthy family being educated in a facist run society where the power to vote must be earnt through military service. Starting the story JOhnn, his best friend and girfriend graduate and sign up for military service but all in different areas, mobile infantry, military intelligence and fleet pilot. Johnny's time in boot camp garners him some new friends including Dizzy who always chased Johnny at school. After being rejected by his girfriend training to be a pilot and inadvertantly getting one of his squadmates killed, Johnny is all ready to leave until War breaks out.

Life in boot camp
Life in boot camp

The Arachnids a powerful race of giant bugs have launched meteors into space carrying their eggs, one of which destroys a populated city on earth. The Earth military lead government launches an offensive against the source of the offending meteorite and despite having advanced weapons and highly tarined soldiers, the federation forces are massacred. Talks decide that the bugs must be more intelligent than first anticipated and as the war becomes more tactical Johnny and his friends are reassigned to a new unit, the Roughnecks, run by his old school teacher. Answering a distress call on a planet which had been bombarded from the air Johnny proves his worth and is promoted, as they approach the outpost the squad find themselves lured into a trap by the arachnids intelligence.

The Bugs are attacking
The Bugs are attacking

After a superb defensive battle against swarms of the arachnids with scenes reminiscent of the epic battles from lord of the rings, the remaining squad members are rescued by Johnnys old girlfriend. Before setting out on the final mission to capture a brain bug.

Spacefleet prepares
Spacefleet prepares

The acting throughout is pretty cheesy but gives a good representation of the type of society Paul Verhoeven has imagined for the film setting. The effects are still pretty fantastic even by todays standards and if you enjoy science fiction films you could do an awful lot worse. As a side note this is my favourite film ever so this review is decidedly biased but hey if your opinion is different I challenge you to write a better review.