Watch Zone Troopers
- 1 hr 26 min
In 1985, the science fiction war film Zone Troopers was released, directed by Danny Bilson and starring Tim Thomerson, Timothy Van Patten, and Art LaFleur. The plot centers around a group of American soldiers during World War II who are separated from their unit and stumble upon a crashed UFO in the Italian countryside. The soldiers soon encounter the otherworldly beings that the ship was carrying, and they must band together to fight off both the extraterrestrial threat and Nazi soldiers who are also after the alien technology.
The film's premise is certainly intriguing - a mash-up of WWII and sci-fi - but unfortunately, it falls short in execution. The script is simplistic and the pacing is slow, leaving little time for character development beyond the broadest of stereotypes: the plucky hero, the cowardly comic relief, and the grizzled sergeant.
Despite the limitations of the script, the cast genuinely puts forth some effort to bring their characters to life. Thomerson, in particular, brings a sense of urgency and humor to his portrayal of the unit's sergeant. Van Patten also does his best with a thinly written role, while LaFleur provides some moments of comic relief as the unit's bumbling radio operator.
Visually, the movie is a mixed bag. The low budget is evident in some of the special effects, particularly in the design of the aliens. However, the film's Italian backdrop is effectively used for some strikingly atmospheric scenes, such as a nighttime firefight in a misty forest.
The action scenes are competently staged, but they lack the energy and excitement necessary to elevate them beyond standard WWII movie fare. There are a few moments of tension - particularly during the climactic battle - but overall, the film's action sequences are forgettable.
The film's score, composed by Richard Band, is perhaps its strongest element. It adds a sense of grandeur and adventure to the proceedings, and it's clear that Band was channeling the iconic scores of John Williams and Jerry Goldsmith.
Despite its flaws, Zone Troopers has gained a small cult following over the years. Its nostalgic charm and earnest performances have made it a favorite of some sci-fi and WWII movie fans. It's not a particularly great film, but it's an enjoyable distraction for those interested in its unique premise.
Overall, Zone Troopers is a flawed but fun B-movie that makes the most of its budget and premise. Its mash-up of sci-fi and WWII tropes may not be entirely successful, but it's worth a watch for those interested in this sort of genre experiment.
Zone Troopers is a 1985 action movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 26 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.2.