C47Houston Flix Review:

"Rogue Strike"

 

 

On a quest to hit the very depths of the ocean, in a specially designed submersible craft, a marine biologist ventures to the unknown and takes along a cinematographer to document this historic venture. But, when his crew, on the surface, is hijacked by a Russian militant group they force the biologist to retrieve an experimental nuclear warhead from a sunken Russian submarine 7 miles below the ocean in this action/adventure feature motion picture by Director Kerry Beyer. 

Written by Mr. Beyer, the story follows Captain Jay (played by John Lansch), a marine biologist and camera man Scott (played by Kerry Beyer) who are venturing on a historic journey to the deepest part of the Ocean's floor, the Challenger Deep (the deepest part of the Marianas Trench almost 7 miles down in the Pacific Ocean) in a specially designed submersible craft named the Trident II.

Unbeknownst to them and earlier a Russian  K-519 Borei-Class Submarine carrying an experimental warhead, Project Prometheus, has been sabotaged and sinks in the Pacific Ocean. The Prometheus is  single warhead, the size of a clock radio with the power of the entire U.S. Nuclear arsenal multiplied by a factor of 10, can take out an entire continent. Every country wants to get their hands on this weapon of mass destruction. 

!/2 of the Russian Fleet has been deployed to search and destroy this weapon before it gets into the hands of it's enemies, including the United States.

The problem is that there is no under water craft available that can reach the sunken submarine or the warhead and withstand the pressure of the ocean.

As Captain Jay and Scott descend toward the ocean floor,  they find that their surface ship, the RV Columbus has been hijacked by a rogue Russian militant group headed by Sveylana (played by Amy Morris) and her sidekick Dimitri (played by Brian Thornton) who will do everything in their power to get their hands on the Prometheus warhead.  By killing members of Captain Jay's team, Sveylana convinces Captain Jay and Scott to retrieve the warhead and bring it to the surface.  One by one, members of Captain Jay's team are being killed. Worried that his son, Chris (played by Chad Thackston) and Scott's fiancée Amanda (played by Brittney Karbowski) will be next inline they have no choice but to hit the ocean's floor and get to the sunken submarine.  But, air is running out, the trench is huge, Captain Jay's health is failing him, Scott can't pilot the craft and time is slipping away.

Our take on the story:  Written by Kerry Beyer, the story is a simple one. A lost submarine with a warhead that everyone wants and a team of murders that will do anything to get it.  In between there is a middle man that is being forced to do the dirty work. There really isn't anything new in this plot that we haven't already seen except perhaps the use of the deep water Trident II submersible underwater craft.  It was an easy story to follow, there was definitely a beginning, middle and end to this movie,  but we do have to say that there was a lot of time spent in creating scenes of humor, comic relief, but in an extended way not just a mere one-liner or look.  Did it work for this movie? I don't really know. On the one hand, the story lends itself to suspense and drama but on the other hand a lot of it was humorous anecdote. The difference being "The Hunt for Red October" verses "The Pink Panther" style of storytelling. It was a good story, but I found it to be a "light" story as opposed to a "complex" and meaningful one. Take Mr. Beyer's last movie, "Killing Mr. Right", for an example. There he has some comic relief in his story, but it worked as most of it was more drama and suspense. In this story "Rogue Strike" there was more comic situations than drama/suspense and with the topic of this particular story it would have worked much better if it had been a bit more serious and twisting with a bit of comic relief.  Was it entertaining? Definitely. The comic situations were funny in juxtaposition to the serious topic of the movie, a very light version of a "Dr. Strangelove" type of storytelling.  You will have to judge it for yourself.  That's all I am saying about the story.

Our take on the production value, the technical side: According to the Director of the movie, Mr. Beyer, the movie was mostly a green screen production.  Mr. Beyer created a virtual world that looked plausible and convincing. He also interjected some military file footage of aero crafts taking off from an aircraft carrier.  Many of the graphics were outstanding as was the file footage.  With regard to actors in front of a green screen, WE didn't see any background shadowing or unevenly lit green screen problems. We didn't notice motion blurriness or "clip-outs" and Mr. Beyer used his skills in lighting and lighting set-up to give his subjects a nice highlight outline using a backlight in between the green screen and the actors and giving them an excellent look that you would expect in a movie. Mr. Beyer did a great job in placing his characters in front of some nicely designed graphics. There wasn't a whole lot of movement with this movie or tracking. Actors pretty much stayed on their marks when delivering their lines. There were some ambient sound problems that were distracting but overall sound was consistent through the entirety of the movie. The soundtrack was complimentary and didn't overshadow the movie and set the mood and tone of the movie quite nicely.   Overall, the production of this movie was pretty much in par with independent moviemaking. It was interesting to see how Mr. Beyer was going to pull this off and give an audience their money's worth. WE think he gave an audience a very nicely made movie.

Our take on the acting. There was some outstanding acting in "Rogue Strike".  Individually, everyone did a fantastic job in delivering their lines without force and it came across very natural.  John Lansch who played Captain Jay was superb and pretty much carried this movie. His performance was witty, strong and energetic. Kerry Beyer, who played Scott, did a great job in this movie as well. His character was in a little more subdued but just  as witty.  Amy Morris who played the ruthless Sveylana, equally carried this movie and her performance was outstanding. Great performances came from the entire cast. Although, the featured actor in "Rogue Strike" was veteran actor Eric Roberts, who played Captain Novakov, his part was good, but minimal. Outstanding performances came out of Deke Anderson, Jullita Pourciau, Kelly Byrns and Brian Thornton.

We think Director Kerry Beyer did a decent job in directing this feature movie. He did a great job in getting the emotions he wanted out of the actors and creating a sense of urgency in trying to resolve a major problem standing in the way of the main characters. He was able to set up the story, present problems, create conflict and ultimately resolve the conflict while all the time creating comic relief in a tense situation. Lighting was outstanding, blocking was good, camera angles were good. We enjoyed what we were looking at. There were times where we thought it did look a little like a video game in its look, but, overall, the movie was entertaining.

Our assessment: This is Mr. Beyer's third feature project and we admire Mr. Beyer's quest to do something totally different. His first project "Spirit Camp" was a slasher/horror film, his last film, "Killing Mr. Right" was a dramatic/suspense thriller and this one, "Rogue Strike" is more of an action/adventure project and a green screen production. We think he did an amazing job with "Rogue Strike" despite some of the minor technical tweaks associated with moviemaking, but overall this is a very entertaining movie to watch. It was funny, ruthless that contained a seriousness to it. Music and soundtrack were outstanding...setting the tone of the movie. Sound was as the same level, lighting was consistent and acting was excellent.  Don't think our assessment and our comments about the movie are correct? Pick up the movie and watch it for yourself and determine it's merits. You can order it online, stream it to your TV/computer through Netflix or Amazon or any of the online VOD websites. Let us know what you think.

C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine and C47Houston WEEKLY, using the TSIRS scale rated "Rogue Strike" as a strong 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Title: Rogue Strike (formally Deep Terror)

World Premiere: Tuesday, December 16th, 2014 at the Alamo Drafthouse-Vintage Park, Houston, Texas. 

Est. Running time: 88-minutes

Production Company: Kerosene Films, LLC

Producers: Kerry Beyer, John Lansch, Kelly Byrns

Associate Producers: Brian Huggins, Kemal Farid, Sherry Ayn Farid

Writer: Kerry Beyer

Director: Kerry Beyer

Cinematographer: Kerry Beyer

Camera Operators: Kerry Beyer, John Lansch, Kelly Byrns and Drew Donovan

Score by: Kerry Beyer

Edited by Kerry Beyer

Set construction: Kerry Beyer, John Lansch and Kelly Byrns

Wardrobe/Props: Kerry Beyer

MUA: Jen Marine and Wendy Martin

Special FX Makeup: Kerry Beyer

Legal Services: Brian Landa

Russian Translation: Julitta Pourciau

Visual FX by: Kerry Beyer

Original Music by Kerry Beyer

Casting: Eric Roberts, Kerry Beyer, John Lansch, Amy Morris, Brittney Karbowski, Brian Thornton, Chad Thackston, Deke Anderson, Julitta Pourciau, Shelley Calene-Black, David Born, Jim Johnson, Kelly Byrns, Pablo Bracho, Walt Beyer, Josh Morrison, Dwayne D. Smith, Nick Collins, Dave Maldonado, Len Wehrung, Chuck Norfolk, Nick Urbano and Troy Parker. 

Also: Shannon Emrick, Patrick Sane, Frieda Beyer, Belinda Pippin andParis Cudini

Website: http://www.deepterror.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DeepTerror 

IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2339425 

Website: http://www.kerosenefilms.com/  

YouTube: http://youtu.be/mwVVEzofBt0 

Written by H. Luna / C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine / C47Houston WEEKLY / All Rights Reserved 12-17-14

 
 

             

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