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DEN`D (2008) Russian Commando -Phantom Commando-Die Rückkehr Review


Den`D (2008) aka  Russian Commando aka Phantom Commando- Die Rückkehr

Russian titel means D-Day translated

I forgot how I stumbled over this yesterday, but that ain`t important.

A Russian Commando remake? The one with Arnie?

Yes, and apparently it`s out in Germany since 2009, and I have never heard of it.

Must`ve been the bad cover artwork, plus the fact that the german title calls it „The Return“.

I am not interested in a bad action movie with actors I don`t know, and even less in something that would call itself Commando-part 2  and not feature Arnold.

Yet I was sacrificing my time to investigate this, just for the lulz. And what I found out , sounded more like stuff I would watch, especially since you guys turned me onto bad action movies with cult potential or actual cult status. I have seen my fair share of bad action, dont get me wrong, but I never actively seeked out the „so bad its good“ kind with real intention.

What I really wanted, most of the time, was seeing good ones. And watching b-movies a lot, I found that those often had an advantage over the A-class ones, beeing more interesting, not afraid of seeking out new territory and , often by chance, becoming  cult movies with more influence than the big Hollywood blockbusters. And the small budget didn`t  keep them from beeing successful-especially when you compare budget and box office. Where was I?  I think this shouldn`t be in the “so bad its good” category…its just a weird remake with some extra comedy thrown in.

As I found out, actor and director Mikhail Porechenkov  had the dream of making this , more out of personal reasons than anything else. It was his idea, from start to finish.

And he doesn`t take it so seriously, so I guess , we shouldn`t, either.

It is , almost entirely, a scene by scene remake, but the comedic tone is very strong here.

The original had it`s share of one-liners and such, and it wasn`t all that serious itself, but Porechenkov makes it even  less serious. Would he have gone the more serious route, he surely would`ve failed miserably, but with the comedy approach, he gave it his own touch, while still paying tribute to the original, which he evidently loves.

It is really weird to see such a wellknown movie like  Commando getting such a treatment. Sure there are plenty of film parodies out there, short ones, mostly..if we do not count several James Bond parodies, wich got the full feature treatment more than once. But I believe, never like this, scene by scene reenacted. Maybe Star Wars..is there such a thing? If so, only very low budget and pretty short, or..enlighten me, if you should know more than me right know.

Or maybe I just haven`t seen enough rip-offs? I know ROBOWAR borrowed plenty from PREDATOR, but still wasn`t an almost one-to-one kinda thing.

I had fun with this one, some scenes and jokes were actually funny. And it`s weird  enough to see a russian version of such a wellknown film, right?

There is one scene that mentions Schwarzenegger, but I won`t spoil that right now.

With a runtime of 76 minutes til the credits, it isn`t  too long..an expression I have learned recently“It doesn`t overstay it`s welcome“.In a way, you are watching two movies, cuz you can`t help but think about the original, of course.

The estimated budget of this is 5 million dollars, not bad for  reenacting  your favourite film, is it? The score and soundtrack is totally weird, I don`t even know what to write about that, it`s lot of different stuff, feels very much thrown together. This remains his only directing duty til now, and if he has no ambition to direct more films, this can be forgiven.

But the odd music choices only add  to the fun.

Well, I have already written more about this than necessary…but I had to share this , in hope some of you seek it out and have just as much fun with it as I had.

I am not sure if this even reached the american and UK market,

but I` m sure, in the worst case scenario you can find it online, including subtitles…..

The german DVD and BlueRay cover show somebody, who doesn`t resemble the actor in the slightest…who makes those idiotic covers? Honestly…WTF?

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2 responses

  1. Ty

    Great write-up! This looks like silly fun.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:36 PM

  2. Direct to Video Connoisseur

    This looks very intriguing. I’m not sure if it’s available in the States yet, but maybe soon.

    March 3, 2012 at 5:54 PM

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