Impostor

Tag line : In the future, not everyone is who they appear to be.

ImpostorFirst time I saw this I thought I was watching a "Starship Troopers" sequel, the reason being that the soldiers in it appeared top be wearing the same uniforms. But as I was soon to discover, this was in fact a completely different sci-fi film.

Based on a short story by Philip K Dick, Impostor takes place in 2079, in a world resembling a sort-of military dictatorship. In this, scientist Spencer Oldham (Gary Sinse) thinks he is in for another ordinary day at work, when he is arrested by the military and accused of being a "replicant", an android assassin used by an alien race, with whom Earth is at war.

Unsure why he has been accused, and not-too-keen on the prospect of being dissected so the military can see whether or not he is human, he breaks custody and sets out to try and prove his innocence. However he finds himself being pursued at every turn by army units, lead by a Major Hathway (Vincent D'Onofrio). A ruthless military intelligence officer who specialises in hunting down replicants.

Aided by a loner named Cale (Mekhi Phifer), Spencer tries  to make it to the hospital where his wife works, hoping once there they can run some tests that will prove his humanity. But why is Hathway so sure that Spencer is a replicant, and if he really is human then who is the replicant they're looking for?

Sharing similar plot lines to "Blade Runner", which was based on a story by the same author, this is a relatively entertaining sci-fi film. It's only downfall being that as it was originally intended as a TV movie,  some of the films budgetary constraints are readily apparent, IE visuals pinched from other films and military uniforms 'borrowed' from "Starship Troopers". But otherwise this remains interesting enough, and though not in the same calibre, would make an excellent companion piece to "Blade Runner".

Overall marks : 5/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Originally intended as a 40 minute segment for a proposed 3-part sci-fi anthology, the production company liked the rough footage so much that they expanded it into a full feature length film.

  • With the exception of the guns, all the military hardware, including the Army uniforms, was re-used from "Starship Troopers".

  • Madeline Stowe also played Katherine in the film "Twelve Monkeys".

  • The weapons in this were modified Glock 18 pistols and Fabrique National P90 assault rifles.

  • Gary Sinse went on to play Detective Taylor in the US TV show "CSI - New York". Vincent D'Onofrio went on to play Detective Goren in "Law and Order".

  • The finished film was originally given an R-rating (under 17's must be accompanied by an adult) by the US ratings board, so was re-shot and re-edited to secure a PG-13 rating for its US theatrical release. This toned down the language and violence but contained some additional scenes of dialogue.

  • The current US and UK DVD's of the film are of the feature length R-rated cut. The US DVD also contains the original intended 40 minute cut of the film as a bonus. The US Blu-Ray contains the toned down PG-13 version of the film.

  • Mekhi Phifer went on to play Andre in the 2004 remake of "Dawn of the Dead".

  • The term "replicant" didn't actually appear in the original short story which this was based on, the scriptwriters added it as reference to "Blade Runner", which was based on a novel by the same author.

Extra Info.

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Other recommendations.

Blade Runner

 

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