9 March 2001 | Wilbur-10
A Sci-Fi/Western which makes you absolutely yearn for the genre classics of the 50's and 60's.
This looks like its going to be an exceptionally dull sci-fi, with Rutger Hauer, looking like some kind of Russian WW2 soldier, playing a renegade android in a post-apocalyptic landscape - a setting which allows for no expensive effects, just a derelict, rubble-strewn building site.
'Omega Doom' is still dull, but when after 20 minutes or so, you realise that the story is a Yojimbo/Fistful of Dollars remake, the film starts to have some minor points of interest.
With no real sci-fi elements - a bloke with shaven bits in his hair, metal gloves and blue contact lenses doesn't totally convince as a fully-fledged android - the film leans towards its Western roots, with two rival gangs holed up on either side of the street and a saloon where Rutger Hauer muses with the friendly female bartender, before playing off the opposing gangs. Hauer fits into the role as the impassive stranger well, accompanied by a spaghetti western guitar theme building up the tension to the inevitable showdowns, which are settled in the classic Western tradition - Omega Doom has a quick draw Shane would be proud of.
Although I quite enjoyed these areas, they couldn't cloud the fact that 'Omega Doom' is boring and derivative, not demonstrating any particular areas of ability on the part of its cast or crew, apart from Hauer who is OK despite being on auto-pilot - but then he is a class actor who, for some reason, prefers to ply his trade in these bargain-basement efforts.
With an annoying whirring noise which accompanies each androids move, and a tiresome 'head' character providing Hauer with his sidekick, there is nothing here for even the most easily satisfied sci-fi viewer. Kurosawa and Leone fans will find enough points of reference to make this interesting, but only in the same way that 'Jaws' fans enjoy 'Orca' or 'Grizzly.