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Galaxy Warriors Review

October 7, 2022 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
Galaxy Warriors Image Credit: Gray Chance Entertainment
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Galaxy Warriors Review  

Christine Emes– Demeter
Alianne Rozon– Vesta
Abbey Flockton– Artemis
Ellen Mildred– Enyo
Christa Cullain– Circe
Andrew Galligan– Rex
(check out the rest of the cast here)

Directed by Brett Kelly
Screenplay by Janet Hetherington, based on a story by Brett Kelly with additional dialogue by David A. Lloyd

Produced by Gray Chance Entertainment

Runtime– 70 minutes

Image Credit: Gray Chance Entertainment

Galaxy Warriors, directed by Brett Kelly and which recently had its world premiere at the Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival this past August, is a nifty low budget sci-fi flick that revels in being all about fun. With a terrific majority female cast and some of the best low budget science fiction movie special effects in recent memory, Galaxy Warriors is sure to charm audiences all over, especially ones with an affinity for low budget sci-fi of the 1980’s. I know I’m a big fan.

Galaxy Warriors stars Christine Emes as Demeter, a badass bounty hunter who, along with her young partner Vesta (Alianne Rozon), travel space capturing criminals and collecting bounties. After chasing down a criminal named Kryll (Ian Quick) and collecting his bounty, Demeter and Vesta go looking for Demeter’s daughter Artemis (Abbey Flockton), who has gone missing. In the midst of their search, Demeter and Vesta find out that Artemis has been captured and sent to the notorious prison planet Tartarus. Demeter quickly comes up with a plan on how to save Artemis from certain death. The plan? Get arrested and sent to Tartarus so they can keep an eye on Artemis and, eventually, find a way to get off the planet. It isn’t the greatest plan (Vesta certainly isn’t impressed with the idea of being captured and sent to a prison planet) but it’s the best plan they have available. And, heck, Demeter seems pretty confident that her big plan will work. Confidence is a good thing.

The conditions on Tartarus are not the greatest. It’s a harsh, rocky planet, and the only truly hospitable areas are in the actual prison buildings, which are their own kind of hellholes. There are heavily armed guards everywhere. If anyone tries to run away/escape the warden Enyo (Ellen Mildred) will send sort of feral monsters called pharons after them. These pharons if and when they catch a fleeing prisoner, will kill the runner and then eat them. Disgusting? You bet. But then what better way to keep the prisoners in line? On top of all that, Enyo also has the prisoners fight one another to the death for the general amusement of two disembodied heads that get a great laugh out of prisoners killing other prisoners.

So Demeter generally refuses to cooperate with her captors, making life for them incredibly difficult (for one thing, Demeter likes beating up the guards). Demeter also tries to strike up a sort of friendship with older prisoner Circe (Christa Cullain), a difficult task since Circe isn’t the nicest person in the world (and who could blame her? She’s been on Tartarus for a long time and has spent most of her time there just trying to survive. That has to be mentally exhausting). But could Circe be someone that Demeter can use for inside information about the planet and find a lead on where Artemis might be? It’s possible.

While all of that is going on, Artemis becomes the focus of lead guard Rex (Andrew Galligan). He tries to hit on her every change he gets, and while she doesn’t completely shut him down, Artemis spends most of her time hoping that her mother Demeter will come find her and rescue her. Will Rex eventually take the hint that he’s not the man of Artemis’s dreams? And will Demeter ever find her daughter and get her off Tartarus in one piece and, well, alive?

At 70 minutes long, Galaxy Warriors is swiftly paced and doesn’t waste any time getting to where it wants to go. As I said at the beginning, the movie revels in being all about fun. That doesn’t mean Galaxy Warriors is goofy or a self-aware parody of the low budget sci-fi of the 1970’s and 1980’s. The events of the plot are happening to the characters and, in that sense, Galaxy Warriors is serious business. But Galaxy Warriors isn’t a dark and grim slog. The movie is meant to be an adventure and exude a sense of adventure. And Galaxy Warriors does that quite well. There isn’t as much derring-do as a Star Wars movie, but Galaxy Warriors has plenty of action in it, not to mention a stop motion monster that’s right out of Ray Harryhausen. That kind of thing always rules.

Now, you may ask yourself how a movie could revel in fun when it features feral monsters that eat people and prisoners fighting other prisoners to the death. How could all of that not be considered grim and hopeless? For me, beyond the way the actors interact with one another, it’s all about the movie’s color scheme. Instead of being drenched in washed out grays and blacks and being all about metal and steel and that weird “dripping water” thing that’s so prevalent in “used universe” science fiction, Galaxy Warriors is chock full of bright and shiny colors. That vibrancy makes even the nastiest stuff seem not as bad. It also gives off a full on comic book feel to the proceedings, which automatically makes everything seem fun.

The spaceship special effects are a thing of true cinematic beauty. The ships all appear to be models that you could hold in your hands, and when they move through space they look like an actual object moving through space. There’s no overwrought CGI and, as a result, all of the ships and technology end up having a distinct personality that you just can’t duplicate with a computer. The various indoor sets also have a life to them that you wouldn’t get with an obvious green screen environment. Yes, that wall may just be a super shiny bed sheet, but ask yourself if you would rather look at that in all of its simple beauty or some rendered control room that looks like a video game?

The movie’s costumes are also full of personality and life. While it’s true the prison uniforms are on the skimpy side and there’s an admiration of the female form throughout the movie, nothing really comes off as creepy or overly exploitative (of course, I’m writing this as a pig male so maybe I’m wrong about that?). Some of the prison guard uniforms have a “created from stuff found in the basement” feel to them, but that’s where the charm comes from. I’m also a huge fan of the flowing costuming of the prison warden Enyo. Enyo’s costume is somehow both absurd and practical at the same time. It’s the future. Why would anyone dress like that? But then again, it is the future. Things change in the future. Maybe I just don’t understand the clothes of the future and just have to accept that that’s what people will wear one day.

I also want to give kudos to the movie’s soundtrack, which is full of synth heavy music. The opening theme is terrific, and it’s always great to experience a movie that understands that it’s always best for your genre movie when it has a theme in it. Why don’t more moviemakers get that? Why don’t more moviemakers do that?

Christine Emes is fantastic as Demeter. She’s smart and tough and has the experience and skills to take on the most dangerous bad guys in the universe, and you get that sense even before you see her in action. Emes also makes Demeter come off as a natural leader, which is what you need to have when you’re a bounty hunter getting yourself thrown into a notorious space prison in order to rescue your missing daughter. And is it me, or does Emes give off a “Dina Meyer in the late 1990’s/early 2000’s” vibe? Is it all in the hair?

Alianne Rozon does a great job as Vesta, Demeter’s right hand and sidekick. She’s smart and resourceful but also kind of vulnerable because she isn’t as experienced as Demeter when it comes to space bounty hunting and whatnot. Vesta also isn’t afraid to stand up for what she believes, like when she refuses to kill a fellow prisoner and when she attempts to rescue a pharon. Rescuing a monster that eats people? Who would do that? According to imdb Galaxy Warriors is Rozon’s first acting role, which is amazing since she comes off as an old pro. I can’t wait to see what she does next (Galaxy Warriors 2?).

Abbey Flockton does a nice job as Artemis, Demeter’s captured daughter. Young and inexperienced in the ways of the rough and tumble universe, Flockton gives Artemis an innocence that makes you automatically root for her. You want to see her succeed and you want to see her survive. You also hope that she has it in her to figure out how to get out of Tartarus in the event her mother doesn’t find her. You know she probably doesn’t have it in her, but you still hope for it anyway.

Christa Cullain is awesome as Circe, the veteran prisoner that Demeter tries to recruit to her cause of prison rebellion. Cullain gives Circe a world weariness that makes you wonder what the hell she’s seen and had to do in order to survive space prison. Despite not seeing what she’s had to do in order to survive, you just know that none of it was pleasant (and it would probably make for a great movie in and of itself. I’d be down for a sort of Galaxy Warriors prequel). Great stuff.

Ellen Mildred is despicable as Enyo, the dastardly Tartarus prison warden. You would think that someone decked out in a supremely weird costume wouldn’t be a complete psycho, but then that’s just not who Enyo is. She likes having prisoners fight one another to the death and just generally ruling over people. And when you find out how she got the job as warden you will hate her even more. I think you’ll find what happens to her quite satisfying.

Galaxy Warriors is a wild and wonderful bit of low budget sci-fi fun. From its set design and tone to its performances, Galaxy Warriors is a great way to spend 70 minutes. I loved every second of it, and eagerly await the inevitable sequel because there are clearly more adventures to be chronicled, not to mention more bad guys to capture and collect bounties on. Long live Demeter, Vesta, and Artemis!

See Galaxy Warriors. See it, see it, see it!

So what do we have here?

Dead bodies: At least 10.

Explosions: Several.

Nudity?: None.

Doobage: A man and a woman, evil laughing on the soundtrack, a woman wakes up, a shiny pink dress, a spaceship in space, a very cool opening synth heavy theme, a spaceship chasing another spaceship, space bounty hunting, cops and whatnot, a prison planet, space Taser hooey, a cave, talk of crooked lawmen, small aliens, shiny blanket attack, a shaking space ship, a woman with a big eye patch, attempted throat crushing, laser blast to the face, a green stone castle prison, a prison fight game, attempted prisoner escape, monster hooey, attempted clothesline, sweating, foot eating, apple eating, gun stealing, off screen lasers, a battle of the elite, a brutal brawl, knives, an explosion, exploding probe, really poor laser gun shooting, neck breaking, a weird green monster done in stop motion, some absolutely fantastic miniature work, multiple nifty spaceships, exploding spaceship, and the promise of more adventures.

Kim Richards? None.

Gratuitous: Space, warp zone hooey, a discussion about how many enemies are out there, a space night club, boots, weird guys in white hazmat suits and red and yellow masks either warming or cleaning their hands over a barrel, shiny clothes, orange fluorescent tape, small fish head aliens that like to attack people, aliens wearing sneakers, a space prison shank, walking outside in slow motion, a robot probe, an invisible energy fence, use of the word “chippy,” two floating disembodied laughing heads, potential lesbianism, “No one breaks out,” people crawling through air ducts, a smelly ass remark, shiny blanket walls, a group hug, “good old Jeb,” a countdown, and the promise of more adventures.

Best lines: “Where am I?<” “Buckle up! I’m about to do a pretzel twist!,” :Never a dull moment riding with you, Demeter,” “Prisoners will comply,” “Demeter, please find me,” “This is going to be like finding a fleck of dust in an asteroid belt,” “No violence! No violence! I’ll tell! I’ll tell!,” “Welcome to Tartarus. Also known as hell,” “You heard the warden. Strip down,” “Stand down and prepare for decontamination,” “Later, gator meat,” “Not so tough now, eh, bounty hunter?,” “No chains! No pharons!,” “This is the fight zone!,” “I wish this wasn’t our fate!,” “You fight dirty! I fight to live!,” “Unruliness has consequences,” “Who are you? And who are Demeter and Artemis?,” “I should have known better to trust bounty hunters,” “That double crossing bitch!,” “Hey! Good luck! I hope you make it!,” “Oh, crap,” “Holy mother of the many moons!,” “Unruly bitches,” “Now those are my kind of fireworks,” and “That drug pushing vermin!”

The final score: review Virtually Perfect
The 411
Galaxy Warriors, directed by Brett Kelly and which recently had its world premiere at the Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival this past August, is a nifty low budget sci-fi flick that revels in being all about fun. With a terrific majority female cast and some of the best low budget science fiction movie special effects in recent memory, Galaxy Warriors is sure to charm audiences all over, especially ones with an affinity for low budget sci-fi of the 1980’s. Everything about the movie is spot on, and I hope that, eventually, we get some sort of sequel. There are clearly more Demeter, Vesta, and Artemis adventures to chronicle and more planets and whatnot to explore in this version of space. If you’re a fan of low budget sci-fi with tons of personality, make sure you experience Galaxy Warriors as soon as possible. It’s well worth your time. See Galaxy Warriors. See it, see it, see it!