Growing up, I spent a lot of time walking the aisles of various video stores, enraptured by all the flashy and trashy VHS box art.
Last time I focused on the horror movie covers and how they affected the young me. But it wasn’t all “Slumber Part Massacre II” and “Ghoulies.” The pinewood shelves of that mom-and-pop video rental store also offered some amazing sci-fi visions. Like their horror counterparts, the sci-fi boxes tended to advertise far more than they delivered. I wouldn’t see most of them till years later, but the box art alone filled me with futuristic dreams.
So in this series, I’m running down the 10 films I remember the most, starting in 1980 and following the boxes up through 1992.
The Eliminators (1986)
The Sell: Holy crap, this movie promised exactly the sort of stuff I doodled on the back of all my homework. To be honest, it’s still the sort of stuff I doodle. A tank/human centaur with a robot eye and a wrist gun? It was absolutely perfect.
The Reality: In reality, the sell isn’t too far off. A mandroid with a heart of gold teams up with a beautiful woman (Denise Crosby), a mechanic and a ninja to battle the power-armor clad BRITISH mad scientist (Roy Dotrice) that created him to begin with. I never saw “The Eliminators” as a kid, but I probably should have because it’s ridiculous, cheesy and ultimately harmless.
Anyway, the trailer is pretty fantastic — distilling all the cheesy fun in this film down to an easily digestible capsule of B-movie wonder:
About the author: Robert Lamb is a senior writer and podcaster at HowStuffWorks.com, where he co-hosts Stuff to Blow Your Mind with Julie Douglas. He has a love for monsters, an aversion to slugs and a hankering for electronic music.