A voice explaining how the world came to be in the situation it’s currently in as we watch assorted snippets of footage flash by. How many times have we seen a film start this way? That was my first hint of the utter lack of creativity that went into director/star James Franco’s (THE VAULT, THE DISASTER ARTIST) latest film, FUTURE WORLD.
Franco plays War Lord, the leader of a gang of dirt bike riding raiders with the expected love of rape and murder. The film begins with them laying waste to a peaceful settlement so he can get his hands on an android, Ash (Suki Waterhouse THE BAD BATCH) and turn her into a sex slave.
On the other side, we have Prince (Jeffrey Wahlberg) who has ventured into the wasteland to find the medicine to save his dying mother Queen (Lucy Liu LUCKY NUMBER SLEVIN, RISE: BLOOD HUNTER). Of course, this brings him into conflict with War Lord, especially after he escapes with Ash. Along the way, they run into an assortment of colourful characters such as futuristic pimp Love Lord (Snoop Dogg, BONES, TRAINING DAY) and Drug Lord (Milla Jovovich, THE FIFTH ELEMENT, RESIDENT EVIL) who’s the ruler of, wait for it, Drug Town. Think Auntie Entity from MAD MAX: BEYOND THUNDERDOME, right down to a cut-rate Thunderdome. Not surprisingly Milla’s performance is FUTURE WORLD’s one redeeming factor.
FUTURE WORLD could still have worked as a B movie time killer but the execution is every bit as weak as the script. The fight scenes are poorly choreographed. And entirely too much time is spent simply watching War Lord and his crew riding around in the desert. It’s like the worst of the Italian ROAD WARRIOR rip-offs from the ’80s but without even their cheesy inventiveness and low-budget charm.
With a dull script and worse action scenes, FUTURE WORLD wastes an eclectic cast, (Method Man and Rumer Willis got dragged into it as well), and the potential to be a fun way to kill ninety minutes. Avoid this one at all costs.
FUTURE WORLD is available from Lionsgate.