Dir. Roger Grolimund (2004)
A loser is visited by an angel who tells him to kill the wicked. He obeys, losing his humanity in the process.
CAUTION: THIS MOVIE'S SUBJECT & CONTENT IS EXTREMELY DISTURBING AND/OR BRUTAL. I HAVE CHOSEN NOT TO INCLUDE ANY PICTURES IN THIS REVIEW BECAUSE THEY MAY BE UPSETTING TO SOME READERS. MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS.
When I saw what this movie was about, I was intrigued: a movie wherein a man is commanded by an Angel to bring the punishment of God to the wicked? That sounds rad, to be quite honest. What I got? Well, that was a little more ham handed. With special effects by Olaf Ittenbach (the man behind BloodRayne, Seed, Dard Divorce, and Barricade, among many, many others), you already know that this film is going to be nice and bloody. Unfortunately, it’s really the only redeeming part of the flick.
Michael Luhser (pronounced Loser) is exactly that. He’s bored, he’s got absolutely nothing going for him, and he’s had it up to here with the indignities of life as he knows it. Director Roger Grolimund could’ve had himself a nice Office Space sequel, but instead, Luhser is confronted by an Angel who commands him to visit God’s vengeance on all of the evil doers of the world.
He denies her request at first, but when she shows him that Angels can talk in a scary voice as well, he quickly complies, setting out on a murder spree that is actually delightfully bloody. Once he begins his journey, he is rewarded with sweet, sweet Angel sex (which, to be honest, was probably enough to motivate him in the first place). Once his mission, which was apparently to kill a bunch of random people who may or may not be doing bad things, is complete, he goes on the run from the police and eventually kills himself. He discovers that the Angel is, shockingly, not quite so angelic, and may have been a demon all along, damning him to an eternity of emptiness.
It’s certainly an interesting plot, part Punisher and part Full Moon, but it’s very poorly executed. Ittenbach is an absolute master of his craft, and it shows in this movie. There’s a scene in which our hero(?) kills a woman in a bathtub with an axe, and it’s totally legit. It looks very real, and is Ittenbach at his best.
There’s a shotgun head blast that is awesome as well shortly thereafter. Another scene involves a graphic removal of a man’s heart. In fact, you know what? I’m just gonna say all of the special effects were pretty awesome. If you want to make a relatively low budget movie with some excellent gore, you can’t do too much better than hiring Olaf Ittenbach. It’s unfortunate that his talents are wasted on movies like this.
Once the main character has completed parts of his assignment, he starts to drink the blood of the “Angel,” completing his descent into what may very well be madness (if that wasn't already apparent). She becomes the architect of his own demise, which seems like a perfectly logical end to a story in which a man decides to go around killing people “because an Angel told him so”. I know that God is supposed to work in mysterious ways, but I don’t think there’s anything in the Bible about him sending a “sexy” angel that can change her face into one of the Buffy vampires and has sex with you when you do what she wants. I don’t know, I haven’t read Deuteronomy in a while, maybe I should check again. Nope. Not in there.
I wanted so much for this movie to be good, at least along the lines of a Mario Bava/ Lucio Fulci movie, something with some teeth in it that can make it a worthwhile watch for people who want to see good gore. And yeah, I guess if that’s all you’re in it for you could be in for a nice treat. You just have to ignore literally everything else in the movie and you’ll have a good time.
This is the kind of movie that YouTube clips were invented for, something where someone else can boil the film down into a five to ten minute clip show instead of the hour and a half waste of time that it becomes. I know that you usually don’t go into a movie like this expecting a miracle, but is it too much to ask that sometimes the director has his or her shit together? This was Grolimund’s only film. It’s easy to see why.
Who this movie is for: Gorehounds, Ittenbach fans, Angels with dirty wings
Bottom line: Not much to write home about, but with Ittenbach's usual incredible effects. As with a lot of the films he's involved in, the effects are the only reason that you're here and the only reason worth watching. If you're a gorehound you very well might enjoy the flick, but for your average moviegoer this one is a waste of time.