Hardware title

AKA: M.A.R.K 13

Tag Line : It Activates, It Exhilarates, It Exterminates.

HardwareA low budget Sci-Fi/Horror pic from director Richard Stanley. Set in the post-apocalyptic waste that is Earth's future, a young salvage dealer named Mo (Dylan McDermot) purchases the remains of an experimental military droid from a local scrap merchant, which he then leaves round at his girlfriend Jill's flat.

Unfortunately for Jill (Stacey Travis), as soon as Mo pops out again, the droid re-activates and manages to rebuild itself using various household implements, including a chainsaw and disc-cutter. Once whole, it then proceeds to chase her round her apartment and try to kill her.

To make matters slightly more interesting the local peeping tom (William Hootkins), who has been prying into her apartment with his high-tech gadgetry and making obscene phone calls, decides to finally call round and introduce himself at this most inopportune moment. Only to find himself trapped in the flat with her, at the mercy of the killer droid.

Eventually Mo comes back and manages to save the day, except the fun still isn't over yet. This damn droid will not stay down and gets up once again, to start chasing Jill, Mo and the apartment security guards round her flat, then start hacking, crushing and sawing them up in loving detail.

Although fairly low budget and being released direct-to-video here in the UK when it came out back in the early 90's, this is quite an enjoyable Sci-Fi shocker, even if only for being able to listen to the rantings of Iggy Pop, who provided the voice of the manic radio DJ in the film. Lemmy from the rock band Motorhead also makes a cameo appearance as a taxi driver and there's a great Heavy Metal/Hard Rock soundtrack to boot!

Overall Marks : 5/10

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Other tag lines "Welcome To The 21st Century!", "You Can't Stop Progress", "In the 21st century there will be a new endangered species...man".

  • Although being outwardly similar to "The Terminator" in many ways, the film was actually based on a sci-fi comic book story entitled "Shok!", which first appeared in 2000AD magazine. The same comic that features the infamous Judge Dredd.

  • The "Nomad" character, who sold the Mark 13 droid to the scrap merchant, was played by Carl McCoy who was the singer of the now defunct Goth band Fields of the Nephilim.

  • The incidental music was by Simon Boswell, who also scored "Demons 2" & "Demons 3 : The Ogre", Dario Argento's "The Church" and the BBC drama series "The Lakes". Other music was provided by punk rockers Public Image Ltd, Iggy Pop and heavy metal groups Motorhead and Gwar (we all remember Gwar don't we?).

  • William Hootkins seems to have an I'll fated career in sci-fi movies, having been shot down in Star Wars during the Death Star battle, where he played the part of "Porkins" (Red Six), he was also bumped off by another killer droid in the film "Death Machine".

  • The taxi-driver was originally going to be played by Sinead O'Conner, but she had to pull out at the last minute, so Motorhead's lead singer Lemmy agreed to step in at the last minute in exchange for a bottle of Jack Daniels, which he downed on set during filming.

  • Director Richard Stanley also wrote and directed "Dust Devil" and the 1996 remake of "The Island of Dr Moreu", which he was originally assigned to direct, but got fired after only one day of shooting.

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