STARRING: Rutger Hauer, Josh Charles, Stuart Wilson, Andrea Roth

1997, 86 Minutes, Directed by: Krishna Rao

An unassuming young man holds the key to dimensional travel, the legacy of his mysterious adventurer father. Boyish Josh Charles is the lucky Luke Skywalker stand-in, a good-natured underachiever shocked out of his lovelorn moping when gorgeous guerrilla fighter Andrea Roth takes the battle to his bedroom. Rutger Hauer is the coffee-chugging freedom fighter who is roused from retirement to fill out the trio and face dimensional mob boss Stuart Wilson to settle the fate of the universe.

More straight-to-video fare starring Rutger Hauer in a long black coat (is it the same one in every movie or is he supplied another one with every new movie?).

Unlike Redline (another Hauer video cheapie that I saw as a double bill with this movie) Crossworlds is an "all ages" movie. So in the exploitation stakes, you’ll have to settle for the generically leggy blonde Andrea Roth in a very short dress.

With no nude scenes or any gratuitous violence, you can make your kids watch this fantasy/action fare about evil invaders (all of them dressed in business suits!) from another dimension seeking a rare artefact that’ll provide them with ultimate power with a clear conscience. Whether you’ll have any fun with them is doubtful.

The biggest problem is the plot which lays no ground rules regarding logic at the outset, so it is very difficult to clearly understand the muddled on-screen events or get involved in any of the action (which gets repetitious after a while).

Come to think of it, I’m not entirely sure whether your kids will have any fun watching Crossworlds either. But the cast is game – with the exception of Hauer who seems to sleepwalk through the entire movie. He must be probably be wondering all the time why they insist on dressing him in a long black coat in every movie, whether it is set in a warm climate like that of Los Angeles or not!

The effects are competent (with minor exceptions). In the end Crossworlds isn’t particularly awful and/or good – just very forgettable. With perhaps some more inspiration it could have been better – a sense of wackiness wouldn’t have hurt it, just like it didn’t hurt the similarly-themed Time Bandits.

It’s the type of movie you’ll watch on television late one night and forget all about as soon as you switch off your set.


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