Cyborg 2087

Cyborg 2087 ★★

I know this is going to be hard to believe, but Cyborg 2087 is not a good movie. It has basically the same plot as Terminator, with a man from the future going back in time to make a crucial change that will keep the bad guys from his time out of power, but none of the quality of the later film.

This particular future guy is supposed to keep a scientist, who has perfected communication by telepathy, from making a presentation to various American military leaders about his magical new thing, around which lots of national security apparatus has already been hopefully built (!?). In his time, you see, the nation (world?) is controlled by these means, with children taken from parents at birth, and everyone implanted with communication devices and trackers. (It's apparently all supposed to be about communism? I guess all the cinematic bad people in 1966 were commies.)

Anyway, in this movie, Michael Rennie is Garth, the cyborg voyager from the future (we can tell b/c he has tubes scotch taped to his forearm, a flashing light attached to his chest with Silly Putty). He, like all of his future homies, has been taught not to feel emotion, something which very aptly fits his acting style.

Apparently the rebels from the future aren't so good at looking at the past, because they send Garth to an old west ghost town that was last inhabited 60 years earlier. He shoots two guys there and a dog (not to worry, his phaser is sent to 'stun'), steals their jeep and, eventually, gets to the smallish southwestern city in which the dreaded invention is being hatched. In the absence of the inventor, who he's supposed to either steal or kill, Garth mesmerizes said inventor's associate, Dr. Sharon Mason (Karen Steele), with his special brain tools and compels her to help him.

I cannot overemphasize how silly this all is, with the terrible planning of Garth's people (why did they send him to the past with a tracker in him that the bad guys can see, and make him have it taken out there?!), Warren Stevens as the widowed, cool dad biologist who should be banging Sharon, Wendell Corey as the muttering, maybe drunk sheriff, and John Beck as a guy named "Skinny" who drives a dune buggy and does the white man's overbite when he dances. (There is a bizarrely long scene of 'teens' dancing in Warren Steven's living room.)

Oh, and also the bad guys give the whole future a bad name with their bumbling, and their running around staring at their watches, I mean beeping compasses, honing in on the tracker that Garth has in him.

Though Sharon and her mascara desperately beg Garth to take them back to the future (SEE WHAT I DID THERE?), because she loves him and he loves her (he's like "well, obvi, dumb past woman"), he manfully refuses, explaining that, if all goes well, he'll vanish and they'll all forget him.

So, thanks to the glorious Garth, the military doesn't get the evil brain juice, and Warren Stevens finally gets his date. The end.*

*Ok also though, if this is supposed to be warning against the danger of oppressive communism, might it not be best NOT to position the American military as the recipients of the magic that made the future a living hell? I am suspicious about all of this tbh — whisper it, but I think these future fascists might just be all-American.

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