What Not To Watch: Airboss IV: The X Factor
If there is one thing that has the potential to be worse than a Frank Zagarino movie, it is two Frank Zagarino movies mashed up into one. Now I’m not certain about this but the scenario that is playing out in my mind is that Zagarino and the crew were filming Airboss IV and Airboss V simultaneously. Then someone finally realized that they shouldn’t have even made Airboss let alone any sequels and everyone stopped what they were doing and went home, leaving Amsell Entertainment with two unfinished Frank Zagarino movies. Then instead of scrapping both projects, Amsell morphed the footage that was shot into one movie that was twice as bad as any other Frank Zagarino movie I’ve ever sat through.
Normally this is where I’d plug in a picture of the movie poster or DVD cover… but I’m not sure Airboss IV: The X Factor ever had any sort of cover art, as I don’t believe it was ever released on its own. The version I saw was part of a “Terror in the Air” 9 pack of movies. Having paid less than $2 per movie, I still felt ripped off after watching Airboss IV: The X Factor.
- Airboss IV 1.0: The first part of the movie follows the continuing adventures of Frank White (Frank Zagarino) as he and three members of the CIA are taking part in a war games exercise with an elite military group known as The Op 4. But when real bullets start flying, we learn that some soldiers of fortune, headed up by a former member of the Russian military, ambushed The Op 4 and are now looking for Frank White to be a part of a brainwashing experiment. The experiment will allow the bad guys to control Frank’s thoughts and actions whenever they need him. The process to make this happen was devised by Dr. Kim, a female doctor from Korea that is part mad scientist and part lonely woman. Fortunately for Frank his team is able to enlist the help from some local militia men to take down the former commies who are on U.S. soil and rescue Frank before he becomes a pawn for the bad guys.
- Pure Torture: Prior to his rescue Frank gets to spend a great deal of time under the influence of some hallucinogenic drugs administered by Dr. Kim. The bad doctor asks Frank questions about previous missions and we are then treated to flashbacks. Like the one about the jungle mission he was on and then we see scenes of the same damn woods that Frank was captured in. Then there’s a flashback to the first mission with Frank as the commanding officer. His entire platoon was captured and tortured. They didn’t torture Frank directly, they just made him watch. This was the moment in the film where I finally made a connection with the Frank White character as I too felt tortured just having to watch and would have much rather taken the physical beating. Also a side note on Dr. Kim… her CPR skills left a lot to be desired.
- Airboss IV 2.0: How did the fine folks at Amsell Entertainment decide to link the two halves of Airboss IV: The X Factor together? First they included some cockpit and jet fighter footage of our hero “Bad Dog” Frank White, then we get some footage of him on vacation in Miami. And finally to really get the ball rolling on the second half of the movie, we see Frank meeting up with Admiral Todd to get his next mission assignment… and where did these two men meet? A strip club of course! So pole dancers and a stripper lathering up her boobs with soap was part of the footage that got us to the second half. That’s thinking outside the box and may be the only scene worth watching. The Admiral wants Frank to protect his 16 year old daughter, who ran off after she got in another of their ongoing series of father/daughter political debates and joined up with a ship known as the Eco Warrior. (This is why the movie has the alternate title of Airboss: Eco Warrior in some parts of the world) The Eco Warrior crew is Greenpeace like in their cause but they have ruffled more than a few feathers in their time and the Admiral is worried his daughter might be in danger. So Frank goes undercover… and you know what, it really doesn’t matter because there is one important fact that I really need to bring up about Airboss IV: The X Factor.
- Everyone Sucks: Airboss IV: The X Factor managed to bring together some of the worst actors in the world. It is like the cast was having a contest trying to see who could deliver the most wooden performance and they were all winning while the viewers were all losing. The guy who played Joey was in Cyber Vengeance for God’s sake, so that alone should tell you the caliber of performers they assembled to surround the lackluster Frank Zagarino with. Frank Zagarino is really low on the action star food chain, if this offends any Frank Zagarino fans out there I would challenge you to point me in the direction of a good Frank Zagarino movie and don’t say Blood Warriors because that was crap too! Frank makes Olivier Gruner and David Bradley seem like accomplished thespians and action mega stars in comparison. I could deal with the disjointed story, the lack of action and the piss poor hero, but the fact that not one member of the cast showed any sort of promise or stood out in any sort of positive way is the main reason this one is one not to watch.
- Mmm Bop: Airboss IV: The X Factor managed to do something that no other action movie to my knowledge has been able to do. During a spirited conversation between Admiral Todd and his daughter Tammy they managed to work in a reference to the musical brothers known as Hanson. And on that musical note I’m going to wrap up this review of Airboss IV and leave you with a little something to get stuck in your head for the remainder of the day…