Cheesy bat­tle against A.I.

Los Angeles Times - - AT THE MOVIES - — Michael Recht­shaf­fen

Fall­ing just short of be­ing so bad it’s good, “Rogue War­rior: Ro­bot Fighter” is a shame­less low-bud­get “Ter­mi­na­tor”/“Star Wars”/“Mad Max” knock-off that will have to set­tle for be­ing merely go­daw­ful.

This serv­ing of sci-fi sludge, set “a few decades from now,” presents a postapoc­a­lyp­tic world in which hu­man­ity has been over­thrown by the A.I. Scourge, a mech­a­nized army in­tent on tak­ing over the uni­verse.

De­ter­mined to stop the evil ro­bot em­pire in its ar­ti­fi­cial tracks is Si­enna (Tracey Bird­sall), a take-no-pris­on­ers arms dealer with a murky past and the heart of a rebel beat­ing be­neath her con­sid­er­able cleav­age.

While writer-di­rec­tor Neil John­ston, whose cin­e­matic nuggets in­clude “Alien Ar­maged­don” and “Star­ship: Apoca­lypse” serves up the sort of cheese­ball vis­ual ef­fects that wouldn’t have passed muster on a first-gen­er­a­tion PlaySta­tion con­sole, it’s clear that dis­trib­u­tor Sony Pic­tures is hop­ing Bird­sall’s young male fol­low­ing will give it a much-needed cult boost.

Sum­mon­ing Pamela An­der­son circa 1996’s “Barb Wire,” the Van Nuys-born Bird­sall, whose bio makes note of her 15-year run on a Maxim Ho­tel elec­tronic bill­board in Las Ve­gas, skill­fully man­ages to kick evil ro­bot butt with­out a hint of muss or smudge of her silky blond hair or care­fully ap­plied makeup.

The rag­ing hor­mone sector aside, view­ers will likely have a hard time find­ing any plea­sure here, guilty or oth­er­wise.

“Rogue War­rior: Ro­bot Fighter.” No rat­ing. Run­ning time: 1 hour, 41 min­utes. Play­ing: Down­town In­de­pen­dent, Los An­ge­les.

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