1980s Zone Troopers (1985)

Published on September 8th, 2012 | by Chris

1

Zone Troopers (1985)

Movie by:
Danny Bilson

Reviewed by:
Rating:
1
On September 8, 2012
Last modified:October 2, 2012

Summary:

Crashed alien ships in WWII Nazi Germany does not a good picture make. Not in this case, anyway.

[Reviewed as part of the "Worst War Movies Challenge"!!]

"It takes war to another dimension!"

Boy, you can say that again.  A dimension of suck.

Here's the gist:  Squad stumbles on crashed alien spaceship in Germany during WWII.  Gets captured by Nazis, befriends aliens, wins the day.  Except, I mean, did it have to be so awful?

Take a look at that image to the left, apart from the grisly visage of "The Sarge" (Tim Thomerson) that artwork has little to do with what actually happens.  How Thomerson and "Mittens" (Art LaFleur) got wrapped up in this I don't know.  These two are actually the highlight of the film, as they seem to at least be having a great time being mediocre.  "Joey" (Timothy Van Patten) and "Dolan" (Biff Manard) also appear to be enjoying themselves, but just don't pull off that "why am I here?" vibe as well.

I can't even say enough about the production.  Filmed entirely in the space of about what looks like some farmer's backyard, they blew the entire budget on the crashed alien spaceship and its interior set.  Then they blew it up.   What they had left they used for the 2nd alien ship, which looks more like a carnival ride than a spaceship.  The alien suits appeared to be an afterthought.

If it weren't for the fact that none of the four principal actors appear to be taking this seriously, it would be unwatchable.  But watching them pull off the atrociously written dialogue while attempting to hold back their own laughter is priceless, and probably the film's only saving grace.

"So bad its good?"  Not quite.  Not even.

Oh, and the soundtrack.  It's like they took the best of the 80's, rearranged a few notes, tossed it back in there and called it good.  I recognized a few bits that sounded suspiciously like John Williams' Imperial March and more bits from "Empire", "Raiders", and more.  Along with a few I couldn't put my finger on.

Don't let this trailer fool you, they just showed you all of the big money shots.  Not even the running "can I get a smoke, Mittens?" joke is funny.

Zone Troopers Zone Troopers
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Description

1944, Italy. After a group of US troops witness an alien landing, they are quickly caught up in an adventure involving everything from Nazis to ray guns.When sold by Amazon.com, this product will be manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media...

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio:
Audience Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Brand:
Manufacturer: MGM
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Tim Thomerson
  • Timothy Van Patten
  • Art La Fleur
  • Biff Manard

Features

  • Factory sealed DVD

Reviews

Customer reviews
Average Customer Review

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WWII soliders trapped behind enemy lines encounter a UFO. Now what do they do? Low budget fun in this 1980's genre mash up., August 25, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Zone Troopers [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
BOTTOM LINE: An easy-going sci-fi adventure with a sense of fun. Don't let the low budget nature of the film put you off. This is B-movie mania at its best. ZONE TROOPERS and this nice Blu-ray both score 4 STARS from me.

THE STORY (contains spoilers): Italy, 1944. During a firefight with Nazi troops a ragtag band of American G.I.'s suffer heavy casualties and wind up behind enemy lines. While trying to find their way back to friendly territory the four surviving men stumble across a crashed UFO. An attachment of elite Nazi SS soldiers (and Hitler himself!) add to the chaos. Der Fuhrer & his scientists naturally want the starship and its advanced technology, (and they've also captured the surviving pilot). Cut off from their command, unable to trust anyone or anyTHING... what will our boys do? What would YOU do??

THOUGHTS: Fun, old school love letter to all those formulaic WWII B-movies from the 1940's & 50's, ZONE TROOPERS is a light-hearted, low budget treat... Read more
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ZONE TROOPERS ON BLU-RAY WITH NEW EXTRAS, WHAT A SURPRISE!, December 31, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Zone Troopers [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I never would've thought zone troopers would get a blu-ray release, what a surprise
well Kino Lorber have gained the rights to this film on blu-ray & DVD aswell
and Kino have given some respect to this 80's sci-fi classic
a new HD transfer has been given in new 1:85:1 ratio
and the picture quality does look very Good, much more sharper & clearer than the old dvd version
it's not an excellent HD transfer but a big improvement from the old dvd version
so there's still little bit of Grain & Dirt in the quality, but most of the picture is cleaned up
the sound quality is very Good aswell in a new 2.0 master audio mix, much better sound than the old Dolby digital mix
Kino have also given new extras aswell
a new Audio commentary with Director Danny Bilson (Danny's first Directored film)
and Tim Thomerson
Danny's commentary is very informative, talks about how he got the film as Director
Danny talks about the production, the cast and... Read more
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joey Verona met the men from space, July 19, 2015
By 
J. Chambers (Georgia, United States) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 10 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Zone Troopers (Amazon Video)
How could you not love a movie that begins and ends with the classic big band sound of "In the Mood"? Okay, the premise sounds pretty hokey, with World War II GIs in Italy fighting Germans, with both sides trying to capture an extraterrestrial alien whose spaceship has crashed. But it's actually an enjoyable film with decent acting and pretty good production values. My favorite scene was where Corporal George "Mittens" Mattinski cold cocked Adolph Hitler, to the consternation of the Waffen SS troops who had captured Mittens and famous war correspondent Charlie Dolan.

Mittens: "Pinch me, Dolan. Did I just KO Hitler?"
Dolan: "You sure did, champ. Too bad we won't live to tell about it."

My favorite character was grizzled veteran Sergeant Stone, a/k/a the "Iron Sarge." He's turned down a battlefield commission at least once, to the dismay of his men, who know he's a better leader than their platoon's shavetail lieutenant... Read more
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Zone Troopers (1985) Chris

Summary: Crashed alien ships in WWII Nazi Germany does not a good picture make. Not in this case, anyway.

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User Rating: 0 (0 votes)


About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



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