Robot Jox (1990)

Image courtesy of IMP Awards.

Image courtesy of IMP Awards.


With Pacific Rim opening in theaters yesterday I felt it might be time to share “Robot Jox”, a B-Movie that is perfect for a Saturday afternoon viewing if you can find it!

Directed by the fantastic Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, From Beyond) and produced by Full Moon Pictures head honcho Charles Band, this 1990 Sci-Fi film aims to please. In a post-apocalyptic future the possibility of out and out war has been forbidden by the surviving nations of the world, which have joined either the “Market” or the “Confederation. To settle ‘territory disputes’, giant Mecha have been constructed and they are piloted by a ‘Robot Jox’. The two opposing forces have their mechs meet in an out of the way location (although they do allow fans of the Jox pay to be close to the action) to settle their nation’s dispute.

The films was originally shot back in 1987 but sadly Charles Band’s Empire Pictures studio went bankrupt before the film could be released. In 1990 the film saw a small theatrical release when Trans World Entertainment stepped in…sadly the movie didn’t find it’s audience. MGM/UA however released it on VHS and that is where it earned it’s cult following. It helped that the stop-motion effects for the Mecha were handled by the late great David W. Allen (The Howling, Willow, Puppet Master).

[Via] Luke of the Dead

The Robot Jox screenplay was written by Joe Halderman (The Forever War) and he co-wrote the story with Stuart Gordon as well. Though reports from behind the scenes say it wasn’t a smooth working process between the two writers as Halderman reported: “I would try to change the science into something reasonable; Stuart would change it back to Saturday morning cartoon stuff. I tried to make believable, reasonable characters, and Stuart would insist on throwing in clich├ęs and caricatures. It was especially annoying because it was a story about soldiers, and I was the only person around who’d ever been one.”

Stuart Gordon has gone on record saying that he understand now where he and Halderman clashed because the author was “writing a movie for adults that children can enjoy” and Gordon was “directing a movie for children that adults can enjoy.”, you can read more about the experience by following this Link.

Thanks as always to IMP Awards for the awesome movie poster you see up top.

VicSage

Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

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4 thoughts on “Robot Jox (1990)

  1. I remember seeing a photo in…I think it was a Starlog magazine back in the late 80s. It was a crew on set standing next to a giant Mech foot and I anxiously awaited the film’s release to theaters…sadly I had to wait a bit and then had to settle for just watching it on VHS. :)

  2. I saw this on hbo or cinemax back around 1990~1992 & loved it. As soon as I saw it mention giant robots in the description I was hooked.

    btw, Anyone who enjoyed this movie should also enjoy Arena (1989). It’s a similar B grade scifi movie, about a fighter on a space station. Arena also has the advantage of starring several people who would later become massively famous for roles in star trek & babylon 5 (gul dukat and quark from ds9 and suasn ivonova from b5), as well as a christopher reeves look alike.

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