Friday, February 7, 2020

AR-15: Comando implacable (1988)

... aka: AR-15: Relentless Command
... aka: AR-15: Unrelenting Command

Directed by: 
Alejandro Todd

A quartet of robbers attempt to rob an armored truck and discover they've been set up by the police. As they try to flee, they hole up in a restaurant and take the patrons hostage. A shoot-out ensues with the cops open firing on the establishment! (Gee, good thing they didn't hit one of several dozen customers just sitting around feet from the thieves, eh?). Mustachioed police commander Alejandro 'Alex' Macebo (Sergio Goyri) decides he's finally had enough and simply leaps through a large window. He's able to shoot and kill three of them in a few seconds and the fourth gets taken out by sharpshooter lieutenant Jorge Falcon (Jorge Reynoso) after he threatens to shoot a girl. Not happy about the situation is criminal ringleader Marquez (Hugo Stiglitz), who's so pissed he just lost out on money that he turns to his buddy and calmly says, "Hand me the bazooka" before blowing the police helicopter out of the sky!

Soon after, the cops are investigating another murder they believe is completely unrelated. A woman has been both sexually assaulted and mutilated, with the wounds on her resembling animal claw marks instead of something done by a human. During the autopsy, coroner Roberto Robles (Juan Garrido, who also co-wrote the original story) determines that the woman was indeed killed by a large cat and that she was raped after being killed. Two more naked, violated female corpses turn up soon after, which pushes the body count up to double digits. It's all so much that Roberto is considering quitting his job and moving on to a much less gruesome line of work. However, his busy personal life is going to make that rather difficult.

Roberto has just purchased a country home he hopes to share with his lovely fiancée Lola (Edna Bolkan). His father (Roberto Cañedo), wheelchair bound mother (Carmelita González), younger brother Tony (Armando Araiza) and sister Silvia (Yirah Aparicio) have all decided to come stay for a spell to help him fix the place up. Unfortunately for them, Marquez and his three goon friends are camped out nearby in the woods with their pet black panther! Naturally, these are the same fellas who've been going on a rampage of rape and murder around the city, plus letting the panther mangle the corpses. Seeing how there's a couple of good-looking women at this home and no one within miles, they decide that's the perfect place to have a little fun. They hang the poodle, shoot the dad, suffocate the mom with a plastic bag, beat the brother's head against the floor until he's a bloody mess and rape and murder both the fiancée and sister. Roberto gets shot right in the head but it ends up being more of a graze and he survives the ordeal, though the traumatic event makes him snap.

Roberto returns to his job and lies about his family being dead, but it's difficult for him to hide the truth from Alex because Tony was dating the captain's daughter, Carla (Wendy Lozano), who confides to his wife Susana (Hilda Aguirre), that Tony hasn't been coming to school lately. Roberto asks to get out of the forensics department and become an officer again. He's accepted back onto the force and given his AR-15 but no one has any idea he's gone crazy. In fact, he's keeping the bodies of his family at home, which he continues to talk to and takes out and arranges around the dining room table when it's time to eat. Dressing up in leather, he then hits the streets and, determined to wipe out the high criminal element in the city, resorts to vigilante justice. He guns down three gang members harassing a couple, shoots two killers who've just gotten released from prison due to lack of evidence, shoots their crooked lawyer in the head and wipes out supermarket robbers, two guys attempting to rape an old woman (!) in the woods and others.

What's truly odd here is that many of Roberto's colleagues know what he's up to and do nothing to stop him! Jorge, who had previously lost both parents to criminals, and female police officer Mariana (Lina Santos), who's in love with Roberto, even discover the bodies of his family sitting around his home yet don't bother getting him any help. He's even given accolades for a sudden drop in crime in the city due to his killing spree! Sheesh. Alex appears to be the only person on the force against what he's doing and determined to stop him. While this is all pretty dumb, there's at least enough action, violence and tastelessness to keep the ball rolling in the brainless entertainment department. There's bloody bullet removal with a knife, someone thrown out a window and impaled on an iron gate and the main baddie being tied down to a table and disemboweled with a scalpel, including gory shots of the guts spilling out.

Many resources list this as having a 1992 release date, though the copyright date in the end credits is 1988. To my knowledge, it's never been available in English though it's not hard at all to follow if you're not a Spanish-speaker. The Mexican VHS release was from Cine Video Plus.

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