Review: Future Cop II

Written and directed by Anthony Wright, co-written by Callum Hughes, Future Cop (Rod Glenn), a legendary super cop from the past, fights to save the future from the unrelenting forces of evil. Also starring: Chris Iddon, Simon Craig, Steve Stevenson, Steven Anthony, Michelle Bayly, Myron Lewis, Jools Wight and Trevor McDonald.

Immediately upon opening these filmmakers are hitting that nostalgia button with a hammer, they’re all too aware of how sentimental film fans are about classic action flicks: Judge Dredd, The Terminator and the occasionally lesser appreciated but iconic Demolition Man, and they use that to their advantage. The electronic style sounds mixed with a strong, deep voice narrating events, has such a history in cinema that it now instantly creates an atmosphere of sci-fi and action. Enter Future Cop doing his best Stallone meets Batman voice and it’s an undeniably well-chosen set up, one that’s difficult to achieve on a small budget but this team gets impressively creative to work around that.

Its use of models to represent the city and spaceships work surprisingly well, they’re not a mini-Hogwarts level of effects but no-one is expecting them to be, what they’ve achieved is well done and the style blends well with the story and touches upon a familiar aesthetic. The direction, editing and choreography work together to pull off high-quality action sequences, there’s no jarring cuts or heavy handedness, it’s smoothly cut together and plays out convincingly.

The writing style again fits right into that action atmosphere, its use of sarcasm blended with arrogance is the perfect cocky hero mix that we all know and love. The progression and pace of the story work well but there isn’t too much going on when you look at it as a whole, it would have been nice to see a little more added to flesh it out but given that it’s part of a series of shorts, that choice does make sense. It feels as though it comes from a place among the fandom for this genre, it doesn’t come across as a carbon copy, it feels like a homage and a way to show appreciation for classic action, while having some fun adding their own twist.

Glenn and Iddon make a good bantering duo, constantly taking jabs at one another and with a chemistry that gives off the feel of having known each other for years. Glenn also brings that typical machismo and one-upmanship that’s so befitted to his character, it’s not parodical but he also isn’t taking himself too seriously which keeps things in a good balance.

Future Cop II is a genuine homage to classic action flicks, their masculinity, love of violence and dystopian futures. It feels like a film that was made by fans for fans, it takes strong influence from these beloved films and plays with the themes and aesthetics to create something new but familiar. It’s impressively creative to create a convincing world on a small budget and each element works together smoothly to create something fun and action-packed.

Verdict: ✯✯✯½ | 7/10

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