German theatrical poster
|Directed by||Roland Emmerich|
|Produced by||Roland Emmerich
|Written by||Oliver Eberle
P. J. Mitchell (story)
Dean Heyde (screenplay)
|Music by||Joel Goldsmith|
|Edited by||Tomy Wigand|
|Centropolis Film Productions|
|Distributed by||Moviestore Entertainment
Overseas Film Group
|Release date(s)||February 15, 1990|
|Running time||98 minutes|
|Budget||DEM 7 million|
By the year 2038 all of Earth's natural resources have been depleted. Multinational corporations have taken control of the galaxy and rival companies battle each other for access to mining planets. A major battle is for Moon 44, a fuel mining operation in the Outer Zone. It is the only installation still controlled by the Galactic Mining corporation. Moons 46, 47 and 51 have recently been overtaken by the Pyrite Defense Company's battle robots. Galactic Mining had its own defence system, helicopters capable of operating in the violent atmospheres of the moons, but it was cancelled as too many pilots died while in training. The company sends new navigators to Moon 44 to assist the pilots. However, there is still a shortage of pilots, so the company is forced to use prisoners. Galactic Mining regards its fleet of mining shuttles as even more important, so if the base is attacked, the shuttles are ordered to leave the crews behind.
Galactic Mining hires Felix Stone (Michael Paré), an undercover agent, to investigate the disappearance of two shuttles that went missing under mysterious circumstances. Stone travels to Moon 44 and meets chief navigator Tyler (Dean Devlin) who suspects the shuttles were stolen by somebody after they modified the flight computers. The mining operation's defence director, Major Lee (Malcolm McDowell) and his assistant, Master Sergeant Sykes (Leon Rippy) are the prime suspects. Stone later catches Sykes reprogramming a mining shuttle shortly before its departure. Sykes attacks Stone with an axe but is quickly gunned down by Lee, who then refuses to hand over the modified computer to Stone, citing "company orders".
Having concluded his investigation, Stone prepares to leave, but the mining operation is attacked by a Pyrite "Medusa"-class battle cruiser. Major Lee sabotaged the alarm systems and then orders all of the mining shuttles to return to Earth. Stone manages to singlehandedly shoot down the entire first wave of enemy attack drones, while prisoner O'Neal (Brian Thompson) stays behind to destroy the remaining drones as Lee's actions at the base are discovered.
Lee tries to sabotage the last remaining mining shuttle, but he is trapped in an elevator by Stone and blown up by his own bomb. The others return safely to Earth, where Stone informs the Galactic Mining Chairman (Roscoe Lee Browne) that Lee was bribed by Pyrite to redirect the mining shuttles to a planet in the Outer Zone.
- Michael Paré as Felix Stone
- Lisa Eichhorn as Terry Morgan
- Dean Devlin as Tyler
- Brian Thompson as Jake O’Neal
- Leon Rippy as Master Sergeant Sykes
- Stephen Geoffreys as Cookie
- Malcolm McDowell as Major Lee
- Jochen Nickel as Scooter Bailey
- Roscoe Lee Browne as Chairman Hall.
|This section requires expansion. (June 2008)|
The film was shot by cinematographer Karl Walter Lindenlaub and scored by composer Joel Goldsmith. It was filmed in color with Dolby Stereo sound. Production design and visual effects bear signs of significant inspiration by aesthetics of notable 1970s/80s science fiction films like Alien, Aliens, Blade Runner or The Terminator.
It received mostly negative reviews from critics. It has been criticized since its release for being a blatant rip-off of Star Wars, Blade Runner and Aliens. Also, it was criticized for its paper-thin plot and the one-dimensional stereotype characters. A review by Time Out said "the film looks nice but unoriginal ... the model work is okay but laboured; the acting is stunningly mediocre." However, it was successful on home video and has retained a cult status.
- SFe. "Moon 44: Movie review". Time Out Film Guide. Time Out. Retrieved 30 June 2012.