Plot: What’s it about?
After most of the world’s population was wiped out by germ warfare and massive earthquakes, a band of warriors assumed the position of ruling class. Led by the ruthless Quinn (John Saxon), these men govern with an iron fist and do whatever they have to, in order to maintain control. But as usual, a small underground movement wishes to rebel at the right moment, to overthrow Quinn and reclaim the lands for the oppressed folks. Quinn has a strong hold on things however and all who have challenged him, well they haven’t done well and few even gathered the courage to try to defeat him. But Willie (Jay Roberts, Jr.) and a team of rebels is primed to attack, since Quinn and his men have taken aim on a beautiful stranger, Sabina (Elizabeth Kaitan). Willie seems to have a plan of epic proportions, but can he and his small band of freedom fighters pull off this coup?
I am always on the lookout for obscure action flicks, so when Image announced Aftershock, I figured I should give the disc a spin. I went into the film with rather low expectations and in truth, I think that is what made this experience worthwhile. Had I expected smash up action and blockbuster results, I would have been let down and hated the flick. But on the low budget action scale, this is a decent enough movie, even though I doubt I will revisit it down the road. The cast is led by John Saxon, who is solid and while some sequences do suck, a few are well done and make the viewing worth the time. You can tell the budget was strapped, but some decent action still surfaces in the end. Is this is a lost action classic? No, but if you’re an action junkie in need of a quick fix, then this disc is well worth a rental.
As I said, the main dude here is John Saxon and while I like him, I don’t understand why he took this role. I mean Saxon is a decent performer and all, but he seems a little out of place here, which isn’t really a desired event. But he does the best he can and that’s enough to pull through, so I suppose I can’t complain too much about his work here. Other films with Saxon include A Nightmare On Elm Street, Tenebre, The Electric Horseman, Enter The Dragon, Black Christmas, Cannibal Apocalypse, and Animal Instincts. The rest of the cast includes Christopher Mitchum (Chisum, Striking Point), Jay Roberts, Jr. (White Phantom), Elizabeth Kaitan (Bimbo Movie Bash, Necromancer), Richard Lynch (The Happy Hooker, Urban Justice), and Chuck Jeffreys (License To Kill, The Substitute 2: School’s Out).
Video: How does it look?
Aftershock is presented in a full frame transfer, which seems to be an acceptable viewing form. The image looks rough, but better than most of the ultra low budget films from the late ’80s. This transfer shows some grain, but the print looks pretty clean, with minimal debris and damage present. The colors remain within a neutral range most of the time, but some bright shades do surface and flesh tones look natural, very warm. I found the contrast to be good, but sometimes on the dark side, which lowered detail somewhat. Still, this is a solid transfer and better than I expected, much better in fact.
Audio: How does it sound?
This disc houses a 2.0 surround track, which provides a nice experience, if a little limited at times. The action sequences sound terrific here and even if the speakers don’t explode, the audio is much better than I had expected. So the impact won’t rival the big budget blockbusters, but this has to be the best this film has ever sounded. I did have some trouble with the dialogue at times, but this no doubt due to equipment used, not a flaw with this presentation. I am pretty pleased here, this is a much better presentation than I had planned on.
Supplements: What are the extras?
This disc includes the film’s trailer, even though it isn’t listed on the disc’s case.