REVIEW: Armstrong (2017)

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An EMT gets more than what she bargains for on her first night in this indie sci-fi action film.

Lauren Monroe is a woman with a troubled past. Having gotten rid of her demons, she plans to start over and gets a job as an EMT. There, she is teamed up with mouthy veteran Eddie. En route during her first night on the job, the duo comes across a wounded man. Taking him to the back, they attempt to nurse his wounds. Reports on the radio reveal a possible group’s plan on attacking the world, beginning with Los Angeles.

All of a sudden, Lauren and Eddie find themselves under attack by the Fifth Sun, a self-proclaimed “doomsday cult” hellbent on destroying L.A. However, thigns get very weird for the duo when they learn the man they have in the ambulance is a high-tech superhero named Armstrong. Equipped with a metallic arm that allows him to shoot high-tech bullets, Armstrong is able to stop the first wave of enemies. However, when he realizes that he has just involved Lauren and Eddie in the war, he plans to go at it alone. Knowing he will need help, Lauren decides to help the embittered superhero, changing her life forever in the process.

There have been well, countless superhero films today. While everyone knows the likes of the Marvel and DC superheroes that have attracted scores of fans on the big screen, there are quite a few that are original characters from filmmakers that just because they are not Marvel or DC, that they shouldn’t be ignored. This film from the team of Kerry Carlock and Nick Lund-Ulrich is one of them, and it is a nice blended mix of superhero, alien war, and real-life drama. While Carlock and Lund-Ulrich directed and came up with the story, Nick Rufka’s screenplay smoothly balances the trio of genres out that perfectly fits its 84-minute running time.

Orange is the New Black’s Vicky Jeudy does a fine job of playing tortured soul turned eventual hero Lauren, who on a road of redemption, finds that times ten in her ultimate decision to help the titular superhero in the war against the deadly Fifth Sun. Jason Antoon’s Eddie is seen as a type with seniority with a taste of having a big mouth. However, he does prove to be vital just as much with the war. As for the titular superhero Armstrong, Shawn Parsons brings quite a presence as a hero who does his best and while he knows he may have no chance of defeating them alone, he intends to do just that, until he has no other option to get help from these EMTs.

Armstrong is quite an indie sci-fi filled with shades of the superhero genre, combined with an alien war and real-life dramatic issues that are driven the performances of Vicky Jeudy and Shawn Parsons.

WFG RATING: B+

High Octane Pictures presents a Dos Goats Films production. Directors: Kerry Carlock and Nicholas Lund-Ulrich. Producers: Doug Bilitch, Kerry Carlock, Nicholas Lund-Ulrich, and Paul Rocha. Writer: Nick Rufca; story by Kerry Carlock and Nicholas Lund-Ulrich. Cinematography: Amanda Treyz. Editing: Shannon Baker Davis.

Cast: Vicky Jeudy, Shawn Parsons, Jason Antoon, Christian Anderson, Kevin Pollak, Camille Chen.

High Octane Pictures will release this film on VOD and exclusively on DVD at Walmart on October 3.

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