body_count_WEBBODY COUNT (1995)
Showing Tuesday 6/4/2013 at The Hollywood Theatre

There’s at least four movies called BODY COUNT from roughly the same time period as this movie, and of the four, this might be the best. It has it all, including (for the genre) a top-notch cast–Sonny Chiba, Brigitte Nielsen, Jan-Michael Vincent, and Robert Davi. The charmingly unintelligible Chiba plays Makato, a lethal hit man who ends up in prison as the result of a deal-gone-wrong, and Brigitte Nielsen plays his girlfriend who busts him out (in a send-up of a scene from COOL HAND LUKE). Together they set out on a mission of revenge to kill the dirty cop that set him up to “take the fall” or whatever it was that happened.

Robert Davi plays Eddie Cook, a no-nonsense cop who ends up in Makato’s crosshairs as he slices, shoots and pokes his way through the police force. It’s up to him to stop the slaughter, before he’s the only cop left on earth. Little is his desire to become “Omega Cop”.

The weird thing about this movie is that the casting is all backwards: Sonny Chiba is the bad guy, and Robert Davi is the good guy!  We’re used to seeing Sonny Chiba playing heros in classic movies like KARATE BULLFIGHTER and IMMORTAL COMBAT, so it’s weird to see him blow away a prison guard, point blank in the face with a shotgun. Robert Davi usually plays some kind of mafioso heavy, like the older Fratelli brother in THE GOONIES or the bad guy in TRAXX. The first thirty minutes of the movie is sort of confusing if you don’t pick up on that. Directed by Talun Hsu.