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 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Tuesday July 28, 2020 


Sergeant Todd (Kurt Russell) is a veteran soldier for the United States armed forces. After being defeated by a new breed of genetically engineered soldiers, he is dumped on a waste planet and left for dead. He soon interacts with a group of crash survivors who lead out a peaceful existence on the planet. The peace is soon broken as the new breed of soldiers lands to eliminate the colony, which Sergeant Todd must defend.

"Though there's nary a horse or Monument Valley vista in sight, the Western is alive and well and playing at a galaxy near you. Thematically reminiscent of Outland, Peter Hyams ambitious 1981 relocation of High Noon to a bleak mining camp on Jupiter's third moon, Soldier is writer David Webb Peoples and director Paul Anderson's epic vision of Shane set in a post-Apocalyptic 22nd century. A buff Kurt Russell stars as Todd, the titular hero of the piece, an emotionless Terminator-like individual raised and trained by the military to become the perfect killing machine. Left to die on a far-flung junk-strewn planet after being rendered obsolete by the Army's new breed of soldier, Todd is nursed back to physical and mental health by a motley group of outcasts who look like they've just stepped out of Mad Max 2. When the community faces annihilation at the hands of the same zealous military machine that discarded him, Todd is finally given the opportunity to show his former superiors just how deadly an obsolete warrior can be. Unfairly dismissed by most critics as just another mindless, high body count shoot'em up, Soldier is actually an impressively mounted genre piece which offers its target audience ample value for money. And while writer Peoples' is not exactly at the height of his game here (he wrote Blade Runner and Eastwood's Unforgiven ), director Anderson (who helmed last year's Event Horizon), working with production designer David Snyder (another Blade Runner veteran), has a enviable flair for the visual set-piece. By dint of his character, Russell's natural born killer may not have a lot to say, but action always did speak louder than words, and here he keeps it brisk and bloody."
Leo Cameron

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CAST: Kurt Russell, Jason Scott Lee, Connie Nielsen, Sean Pertwee, Michael Chiklis, Gary Busey

DIRECTOR: Paul Anderson

PRODUCER: Jerry Weintraub

SCRIPT: David Webb Peoples


EDITOR: Martin Hunter

MUSIC: Joel McNeely


RUNNING TIME: 100 minutes


AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: November 26, 1998

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