2 StarsAfter the massive international success of the Batman pictures Cannon studios jumped on the superhero bandwagon and pumped out this enjoyable low-budget film based on the venerable Marvel Comics character. Matt Salinger (grandson of the infamous author) is quite good in the title role, his awe-shucks innocence is put to good use. Cadet Steve Rodgers is transformed from a weakling into the super-solider known as ‘Capt. America’ in order to battle the Nazi’s and their maniacal leader ‘Red Skull’. After being captured on his inaugural mission and promptly strapped to a missile that lands in the frozen tundra of Alaska, Capt. America is frozen alive for nearly 50 years before thawing out and re-entering the world. This portion of the picture plays like an early version of the Mel Gibson film Forever Young.
There is an amusing running gag showing Rodgers repeatedly stealing cars and a nifty opening sequence in which the Nazi’s kidnap child prodigy Johann Shmidt and turn him into the Red Skull. On the whole this is better than the similarly silly Roger Corman produced version of Fantastic Four (not the theatrical version) yet not as polished and entertaining as The Punisher. An extremely rare film that can be found on Amazon on VHS for curious viewers. Director Albert Pyun is currently working on his director’s cut to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray soon.
Director: Albert Pyun
Stars: Matt Salinger, Ned Beatty, Darren McGavin