An intergalactic warrior named Shep Ramsey crashes on Earth until he can recharge his ship so he gets to know the neighborhood and save the day from the bounty hunters coming for him.
Judging a Book by its Cover
-Hey, a plain, white background! Someone put a lot of work cutting out the actors and pasting them onto nothing.
-Everyone just seems happy to be there…except Mr. Lloyd.
-Did Hogan dress for Mad Max?
No home should be without one.
Directed by Frank Cappello
Starring Hulk Hogan, Christopher Lloyd and Shelley Duvall
The film opens with evil General Suitor holding the President of a nearby planet hostage. Shep Ramsey (Hogan) forces his way onto the General’s spaceship to save the President and capture Sutor. Plans don’t go the way they should and the President is killed and the ship blown up but at least Shep is still okay! His ship damaged, he must land on Earth and charge his ship at a low enough level to not be detected by Suitor’s army.
Looking for a place to hide, he notices several “Apartment for Rent” signs and follows them to the Wilcox house. Charlie (Lloyd) is a building designer who is unappreciated by his boss at work and it affects his home life with his wife, Jenny (Duvall) who put the converted garage up for rent. Shep shows up to shake things up for the family and no not in that way you sick buggers. Charlie is immediately suspect about Shep and his story of being from France and creeps around Shep’s stuff and comes across some serious alien hardware (among them is a PKE meter from Ghostbusters.)
While Shep is trying to adapt to human life, he can’t shake that he’s a hero and must look out for everyone from a little girl’s cat in a tree to a mime stuck in a box. The humour just writes itself. Charlie uses Shep’s alienware to save a woman but it comes at a cost: the items give off a traceable energy source which soon brings a pair of bounty hunters (one of which is the Undertaker!) looking for Shep and they’ll tear the whole planet apart to find him.
Hogan is clearly the centerpiece of the film though the character of Shep Ramsey just comes off as Hogan acting as himself with a different name and though he’s an alien he looks no different from a normal human, lucky for him. That type of acting worked in No Holds Barred because Hogan played himself but here he doesn’t do anything — it’s actually on the audience to pretend he’s the alien and not Hulk Hogan in a space ship. A lot of the humour derives from Hogan’s “fish out of water” alien coping with 90s America but it’s very hit or miss.
Shelley Duvall is a bit of a non-factor in the movie for the most part, but Christopher Lloyd, fresh off of the Back to the Future sequels and Who Framed Roger Rabbit, is probably the best part of the entire movie as a stressed out architect with an alien problem. Ready to have a brain aneurysm at any moment, Lloyd delivers his lines like a coked out Doc Brown. Charlie should have been the real focus of the film since everything revolves more around him than Shep.
To call Suburban Commando an action/comedy would be putting it mildly. As a child, I was certainly entertained by it and maybe kids today would also find it a fun watch. As an adult, however, it’s along the same lines as No Holds Barred — a film that’s so bad yet it manages to entertain in spite of itself — only it doesn’t entertain as often as Hogan’s previous outing.
Story: 5 – A so-so comedy fish out of water story involving an alien warrior hiding out on planet Earth amongst the puny earthlings.
Blood: 2 – Not much in the way of blood, the violence is toned down a lot compared to NHB. A bad guy getting his hand cut off is probably the worst thing in here.
Nudity: 0 – Nope, thankfully not even Hogan butt.
Overall: 5 – It has its moments from time to time but usually anything involving Hogan gets laughs for all the wrong reasons.
-Arnold Schwarzenneger and Danny DeVito were originally attached to play Shep and Charlie respectively in a film called Urban Commando but dropped out to do Twins instead.
-A special effects technician was killed in an accident involving a trap door he was testing.