Sunday, April 16, 2017

Trash Bin: TANK 432

Welcome to another installment of the TRASH BIN, where we watch the worst movies Hollywood has to offer, according to the critics, and give you our thoughts, good or bad. This week's pick is the 2015 British sci-fi film...TANK 432.

I stumbled across Tank 432 on Netflix and was intrigued by the premise of mercenary soldiers being chased by an unseen, possibly supernatural enemy.  There was so much expectation it could have lived up to, yet it failed miserably. I don’t normally add a movie’s synopsis into my reviews, however this one calls for it in order to properly introduce it.  Here it is:

With nowhere else to hide, a group of mercenaries and their two prisoners take cover inside a long abandoned Bulldog tank. But, while they try to keep the forces outside at bay, the real enemy is already among them, locked inside the 'Belly of the Bulldog'.

In my opinion, this synopsis lies. The real enemy in this movie is the absolutely incoherent storyline. It’s bad enough that Tank 432 just drops the audience into a scenario that make you feel you came in mid-movie, but when the audience has to spend the whole movie trying to figure out what the most basic element of the story the writers and directors are trying to convey is, then the writers and directors have failed.

Tank 432 is written and directed by Nick Gillespie, who is also known for Kill List, which, like Tank 432, is another one-star rated movie on IMDb.  I don’t know anything about Kill List, but after watching this I can definitely agree with the one star rating it received.  The movie has a main cast that tries their best to make barely fleshed out characters and the dialog, which consists mainly of profanity filled raving and shouting at each other as if the over use of the F-bomb makes up for the lack of cohesion in the plot, tell a story.

Rupert Evans, who currently stars in the series The Man in the High Castle, plays Reeves who is one of the mercenaries transporting two hooded women wearing orange jumpsuits that they refer to as ‘cargo’. Evans seems to have the most coherent and watchable character, but that is largely due to his determination as an actor to rise above the horrible script.

The only other character with some sort of cohesion to it is the medic Karlsson, played by Deirdre Mullins. She brings a feel of competence to her role that is a breath of fresh air in this claustrophobic ‘trapped in a tank’ scenario.

The consensus of the reviewers on IMDB is that Tank 432 seems to be that mercenaries and the ‘cargo’ are being experimented on by some unseen group and includes an orange powder. I also agree with them that the best parts of the movie are the hallucinogenic dreams that Reeves has.  However, this, combined with an unexplained plot element, that of them finding a young girl trapped in a cargo container, fail to add anything solid to the plot. The girl, played by Alex Rose March does nothing but spend her time either sedated into unconsciousness or screaming like a banshee. It is never explained who she is, why she is there and what is making her scream in terror.

That pretty much sums up the whole movie. No rhyme or reason as to what is going on. My suggestion to our Merc readers is to leave Tank 432 in the trash bin and watch something else.


Rotten Tomatoes: 20%
Metacritic: 43
IMDb: 3.6/10


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