Rage (1995)

Alex is an elementary school teacher, and lives a happy life with his wife and daughter. One day he is abducted by some mysterious criminals, who want to create an army of super-soldiers. Alex is selected as the perfect template for cloning, and is imbued with supernatural powers in a secret laboratory. Alex manages to flee, and must fight for his survival and that of his family.

Rage was another entry in the seemingly endless list of cheap action films from production company PM Entertainment. A PM film is the action movie equivalent of a porn movie. Dialogues and plot are usually abysmal, even the works of B-action movie forge Cannon Studios are Academy Award contenders in comparison. On the upside, this makes watching PM movies usually quite relaxing, as it’s absolutely unnecessary to pay attention to anything except the action scenes.

Rage is no exception, the script hits rock bottom multiple times. One example is the search of the rogue scientists for a perfect specimen, which they conduct mostly with Mexican immigrants. After many unsuccessful attempts, the first Caucasian they come across is immediately approved for cloning. These days such a plot item would be considered extremely racist. But there’s so many other dumb elements in the script that I’ll give PM the benefit of the doubt here.

What makes Rage special is the quantity and quality of the action scenes. The whole film is a non-stop chase filled with shootouts, car crashes and explosions. The absolute highlight is an epic car chase on a highway, that is really one of the most impressive scenes of this kind I’ve seen. There’s cars flying around, getting crashed and exploding all the time, it’s 20 minutes of pure mayhem. As usual with PM movies, the stunt people do some crazy and dangerous stuff, and in Rage their work is particular awesome.

Gary Daniels plays the main character, and Rage is part of the “R”-trilogy he made for PM Entertainment. Riot and Recoil are the other movies, and all of them belong to the better PM productions. Daniels is certainly not the worst martial artist who transitioned into the action hero profession. One thing he has going for him is that he actually looks and behaves like a normal human being, as compared to the many other disproportionally shaped action stars. And Daniels certainly makes a good impression with his physical presence, he’s shooting, running and jumping all the time. The only thing that is slightly disappointing is that he cannot display his martial arts skills often enough, there’s a few short brawls, and that’s it.

Rage is one of PM Entertainment’s best movies, and can be recommended for action fans due to a couple of insane sequences of violence and destruction. And if you ever wanted to descend into the lowest tier of action movies, it’s a good place to start.

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