Memorial Day (1998)- * * *
Directed by: Worth Keeter
Starring: Jeff Speakman, Paul Mantee, Frederick Coffin, Mongo Brownlee, Stephanie Niznik, and Joe Estevez
A group of deep-state government guys led by Willard (Mantee) have decided that something needs to be done about their dwindling budgets in the post-cold war era. So, naturally, he devises a supposed terrorist threat called "Red 5". When a crusading senator, a man named Lancaster (Coffin), gets too close to the truth during his efforts to root out what Red 5 truly is, a government assassin named Edward Downey (Speakman) is called in to knock off Lancaster. Just having come out of forced incarceration in a mental institution, Downey is none too happy about being a government pawn.
For the first half, things bounce around in a rather unfocused manner, which is part of the fun. The idea that director Worth Keeter thought that audiences would be fully engaged in this silliness is kind of amusing. A lot of the dialogue was fun to hear, because back in 1998, it was pretty ahead of its time. A lot of what they were saying still holds true today. Throw in some footage from some other movies, and you have an outing that's very redolent of the late-90's DTV scene.
The box art, complete with its Independence Day (1996) font, would lead you to believe that this is a sci-fi slog. Thankfully, it's not. The closest it gets is all the gobbledygook about satellites. Thankfully, no aliens, space stations, or the like are on show here. To see Speakman in that context, see (or, rather, do not see) Scorpio One. That film was also directed by Keeter the same year as this, 1998. Maybe he got confused. Inexplicably, there are some Star Wars-influenced music cues on the soundtrack, and the name of the ersatz terrorist group, Red Five, is a Star Wars reference. Just why they thought this was necessary, we don't know.
Comeuppance Review By: Brett and Ty