1 1/2 Stars
I’ve long been a fan of Mario Van Peebles. He has a captivating screen presence and a natural talent as a director. So it is a let down when he appears in incoherent genre garbage like, Guardian. Obviously inspired by Schwarzenegger’s End of Days, this direct-to-dvd thriller can’t compete with the big boys of the genre.
Iraq War veteran John Kross (Mario Van Peebles) is still scarred physically and emotionally from the harrowing events he witnessed one night in the foreign desert. Now, Kross is a Los Angeles cop who finds himself combating a hot new street drug that may be connected to a spate of homicides in the city. As the bodies pile up it becomes clear that the deaths are related to a demonic force that Kross encountered during his tour in the service.
There are three different stories all jostling for control of the storyline in Guardian. None of which are very interesting or original. The fact they don’t blend together well is apparent in the jarring transitions in plot, logic and character motivation. I’m not searching for pathos in a B-movie directed by former Deathstalker, John Terlesky (I’m a big fan of DS2), but I would’ve appreciated a cohesive through-line. Look for both Ice-T and James Remar in bit roles.
Director: John Terlesky
Stars: Mario Van Peebles, James Remar, Karina Lombard