CHOKE CANYON (1986)
Article 5020 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Charles Bail
Featuring Stephen Collins, Janet Julian, Bo Svenson
What it is: Action movie
A physicist testing a theory about converting sound waves into energy crosses swords with a corporation intent on using his location as a dumping site for toxic waste. Much action occurs.
I will give this movie credit for one thing; there’s some impressive stuntwork here. In the first half of the movie there’s a stunt involving a horse, the scientist, and two all terrain vehicles that is pretty impressive, and the second half of the movie has an extended action sequence involving a helicopter, a biplane, a round sphere of toxic waste, a bus, one of those trucks that hauls new cars around, a landing on the main street of a town, and a couple of construction vehicles. This increasingly outrageous last series of stunts is so off-the-wall that the movie seems to make the transition from straight action movie to parody, especially when it asks the question “Is it possible to do science while engaged in a knock-down fist fight?” Nevertheless, it does need to be pointed out that the science in the story never really becomes anything more than a Gizmo Maguffin, which somewhat marginalizes the movie in terms of its fantastic content. And when you get down to it, the overall story is pretty run-of-the-mill stuff. All in all, if the movie is worth catching, it’s for the stunts and the presence of Lance Henriksen, though his part is a bit disappointing.