The Mutant Chronicles

Movies like “The Mutant Chronicles” are difficult to critique, because even though they may not be very good, you still have to respect their ability to create something from nothing. Shot on a shoestring budget with some of the best B-movie actors in the business, the film takes place in 2707 as corporations wage battle over the planet’s dwindling resources. When a mutant army is accidentally released during the heat of battle, however, a monk named Brother Samuel (Ron Perlman) enlists the help of seven soldiers (including Thomas Jane and Devon Aoki) to travel into the core of the Earth and destroy the machine responsible for creating the mutants. It’s essentially “Lord of the Rings” for the steampunk set, right down to the fellowship of nine and the orc-like mutants they battle along the way. Unfortunately, though the story sets up some cool action sequences, the experience is marred by D-grade special effects. You can almost always tell when the actors are working in front of a green screen, and the CG blood looks like it was added using Paint Shop Pro. Fans of campy sci-movies will no doubt appreciate the low production values and so-cheesy-it’s-funny dialogue (“I don’t get paid to believe. I get paid to fuck shit up.”), but for everyone else, “The Mutant Chronicles” is probably best ignored.

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