Friday, November 16, 2012

BIO-COP (Review)

BIO-COP (2012)
[Short Film]

review by AARON ALLEN

Written and Directed by Steven Kostanski

Starring Robert Homer, Rick Cordeiro, Ray Strachan, and Adam Brooks

Let's play the reviewer's favorite game:Whaddya-Get?

Whaddya-Get when you take the 1980's cop action drama and filter it through the pop-culture lens of Astron-6 as influenced by 80s gems like Robocop, Maniac-Cop, Action Jackson, and Cobra and then grind it up with generous helpings of The Toxic Avenger?

You get "BIO-COP," the newest short from the Astron-6 collective's writer/director/special-effects whiz Steven Kostanski (MANBORG). In "BIO-COP" -- a short film in the form of a VHS trailer -- a horrific biological accident turns a cop into a walking biohazard with a literal death wish and hunger for justice.

Director Kostanski cherry picks the cheesiest elements of 80's cop actioners (the badge-relinquishing confrontation with the police chief, the odd-couple buddy banter, the drug busts and scruffy street thugs) in an unexpectedly loving homage to the hey-day of goofy shoot'em ups. "BIO-COP" earns most of its laughs by de-glamourizing the super-cop archetype of the VHS era and making the titular hero a screaming, wailing, puking, life-cursing mess of unstable flesh in aviator glasses.

If you love cheesy 80s cop movies but drenched in buckets of bio-goo and slimy latex, you'll love Kostanski's "BIO-COP". Without presenting himself as above the material, Kostanski harvests the cheesy and goofy elements of the genre with clear fondness. It's just a damn shame that Astron-6's relationship with TROMA went sour and we'll probably never see Kostanski take on Toxie. But we'll always have "BIO-COP".

See BIO-COP screen with Kostanksi's feature-length indie epic MANBORG on Friday, November 16 at The Staircase Cafe Theatre. (7pm / $10).

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