Sci-Fi Review: Trancers 4: Jack of Swords (1994, dir. David Nutter)


Yes, there’s more of these. And three more after this one. At least this one is sort of a step up from the third one in that they let Tim Thomerson do more comedy and self aware jokes than the particularly lousy Trancers III. The movie opens up with a castle followed by this picture of Jack Deth and someone says, “now it begins”. Unfortunately, it doesn’t end with this movie because this one and the fifth film are really one movie divided into two.


Then cut to Los Angeles where Jack gives his usual voiceover only this time it’s to tell us that he’s basically just a time cop now because all the Trancers have been dealt with. Thomerson now walks through a brightly lit door and proceeds to do a little standup routine. Makes sense, he was once a standup comedian. Remember that fish head cyborg thing that he was paired up with at the end of Trancers III? Well…


he didn’t make it. And neither did anyone else from the previous Trancers movies except Tim and one of the guys who was on the council at the end of the previous film. Thomerson has some humorous lines about this. This is when you realize the movie is going to be self aware, which is a welcome return since the first one did that as well. Then we cut to a bar to be introduced to Jack’s love interest for this movie. If you can call her that. Afterwards we see Jack, a gun, and an awesome lamp.


I wonder what contest I need to win in order to get that lamp. Now Jack goes to get his mission and of course it’s the same lady he ran into at the bar. Oh, and here’s every man’s worst nightmare.


Apparently, this knife will cut through anything. That will come in use later. She has also improved the long second watch so that it can recharge. That will also come in use later for a comedy bit. He also gets an RBG-7. It’s the Trancers version of the BFG. Do I need to spell it out for you: Really Big Gun. It can recharge like Mr. Fusion from Back To The Future. Just shove things up it’s butt as she says. Oh, I’m sorry, “shove it up your butt”. She says she would have made an inflatable doll of herself for him, but she didn’t have the time. Considering the lines he has later with a different version of her, his lines about her being a smart ass here are kind of funny. Anyways, after Jack tells his boss he doesn’t appreciate that he’s been “fucking” his wife, a plot device grabs him, and he’s sent somewhere in time and space.


Jack was originally supposed to go to Topeka, Kansas, but he winds up…who cares cause look, a Trancer!


Sorry, I mean a “fucking Trancer!” This movie has more cursing and some tits for it’s R rating. Well, as you might have guessed, his Really Big Gun doesn’t do Jack Shit (Jack’s nickname in this). So Jack just stabs him and after changing colors a few times, he disappears like any good Trancer should. Here’s our bad guy.


He knows it’s important to show the girl’s breast to the camera before you kill her. Seriously, he opens up a girl’s dress just to show her breasts to the camera then vampire kills her. After the bad guy and bad guy, jr. have an exposition conversation, we cut back to Jack for comedy.


Jack hops into hay. He doesn’t hide under the hay or anything, but the guy driving the thing doesn’t notice. He’ll fall right out of that hay later and no one notices then either. Love it! After we meet people who we don’t care about, we meet this guy who is here to splice this movie into two.


I’d say he’s rocking the Star Wars Emperor look here, but there’s already a Star Wars thing coming in this. He has another picture of Jack in which he is holding up the gun which is going to get struck by lightning or something. I don’t really care. Where’s Jack!


Jack falls out of the hay and gets into a fight. Jack’s jacket gets hit with an arrow…


and then it’s time for more plot. Look, all you need to know is this is some sort of medieval place with medieval Trancers that have to feed on people to stay alive. That’s it! Oh, and here’s the lady from the future who is someone different in this past other world.


Cause of course she is. Now Jack runs into character actor Lochlyn Munro who at the time of writing this has amassed close to 200 acting credits on IMDb.


He’s here to heal Jack and then turn him in. There’s also some plot injected in here before they come to capture him. The bad guy has a son who needs to be initiated and thus needs to kill someone. Who cares. Back with Jack, he discovers that the long second doesn’t exactly work the same way in this world.


The long second actually slows him down instead of everyone else. This is a funny scene as Thomerson moves in slow motion while everyone around him is fascinated till they decide to just knock him out. Jack wakes up a little confused with the love interest who has been told to satisfy him.


Jack gets laid. After the other characters get in the way of us having fun watching Thomerson, he finishes having sex and immediately starts chewing her out for being so submissive. Part way through this Jack realizes the humor of his situation. In the future he was chewing her out for being a bitch and here for putting out at the drop of a hat.

After grabbing a guy out of a painting who must have been watching them the whole time, Jack is led into the bad guy’s castle and captured. Meanwhile, other actors are taking up quality Jack time. The bad guy talks about Jack’s weapons to pad the movie out while Jack is chained against a wall, but Jack says fuck you!


After the girl he just had sex with manages to get the indestructible knife to Jack, he is left alone, and breaks out of his chains by cutting through them using the knife. Now the movie is just a series of action scenes as Jack hooks up with rebels I didn’t bother to mention before and the bad guys search for Jack. Oh, and Jack learns his destiny.


But just before that, bad guy opens a door using The Force.



Then more stuff nobody watching this movie cares about happens. I do love this scene though.


The bad guys stumble upon them and stop. Are they surprised they’re just standing there? Do they think they’re are going to make out or something? Who knows? Who cares. The bad guys end up in traps and die. After more stuff we don’t care about…


this guy falls from the sky to kill somebody with a sword. Now we get the sword battle between Jack and the bad guy. To quote Jack: “En garde, motherfucker!”


Sadly, Jack really doesn’t know how to handle a sword at all. He swings it around in a ridiculous fashion before the guy simply takes it from him and lets Jack run away. Jack finally decides to accept his destiny by going to get struck by lightning. Well, that is after The Wizard Of Oz shows up.


Then he gets struck by lightning.


And what happens you ask? The bad guy goes up to investigate where Jack was and apparently Jack had just teleported behind him. Jack shoots him and after changing colors, he’s dead. Then they say things to tell us there is another movie before posing.


So ends Trancers 4: Jack of Swords. A movie that, while it did have better jokes and lines than the third film, is instantly forgettable and really does have a lot of scenes with actors we don’t care about. I’m not sure why they couldn’t have spent more time with Jack. He’s still very funny. This is the last of the Trancers movies I had already seen. The remaining three are going to be brand new to me.

Well, let’s end this the same as the last three reviews. By that I mean with a great Tim Thomerson look. This time it’s probably the look he gave when he was told he would not be back for Trancers 6.


Getting In The Holiday Spirit #1: The Night Before Christmas (dir by Edwin S. Porter)

I love the holiday so much and it’s not just because I usually get lots of presents, though I do love the excitement of waking up on the morning of the 25th and looking at all those wrapped presents sitting underneath the tree   I also love getting to spend time with my family and friends.  For me, the holidays are all about love, happiness, togetherness, and everything else that should be observed all year, as opposed to just one day.

Plus, sometimes, it snows!  I love snow.

So, are you in the Holiday spirit yet?  I know that TSL contributor Patrick Smith is because he’s been tracking down scary Christmas films for me and the other members of the Late Night Movie Gang to check out.  Seriously, just try to watch Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny or whatever it’s called.  Agck!

Well, if you’re not in the spirit yet, don’t worry!  I’m here to help!  This week, I will be sharing 6 holiday classics that just happen to be on YouTube!  For instance, check out the adorable film below.  The Night Before Christmas was made 110 years ago, in 1905.  It was directed by film pioneer Edwin S. Porter and it’s based on the famous poem.  In this 11-minute silent film, we watch as both Santa and a family get ready for Christmas.  Watching this film, it’s amazing to see how little Christmas tradition has changed.

Enjoy a piece of film and holiday history below!


If Ed Wood Directed STAR WARS…

…it’d probably look a lot like HARDWARE WARS, the 1978 short spoof by Ernie Fosselius. Set to Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyrie”, this trailer-styled parody features Mad Magazine type character names like Princess Anne Droid, Augie Ben Dogie, Ham Salad, and 4Q2. Narrated by none other than Paul Frees, even George Lucas is said to like it! “You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll kiss three bucks goodbye” but mostly you’ll laugh at the hilarious HARDWARE WARS:

May the Fan Art Be With You…

In honor of this weekend’s release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, here is some of the best Star Wars fan art that I’ve come across online.

By Andrea Meloni

By Andrea Meloni

By Darren Tan

By Darren Tan

By Dave Dorman

By Dave Dorman

By Esther Wagner

By Esther Wagner

By John Gallager

By John Gallager

By Josh Lang

By Josh Lang

By Livio Ramondelli

By Livio Ramondelli

By Manuel Morgada

By Manuel Morgada

By Rommel Bas

By Rommel Bas

By Wotjek Fus

By Wotjek Fus

By Wotjek Fus

By Wotjek Fus

By Wotjek Fus

By Wotjek Fus