Friday, August 09, 2013



Here's something different: a movie that combines the superhero and secret agent genres. We first see Argoman, a slightly dumpy masked guy in yellow and black tights, on a mission for the Soviet Union. When he's attacked by two camps of villains, he uses his telepathic powers to get them to kill each other and he escapes, getting a snuff box used by Peter the Great as payment. In his alter-ego as playboy spy Sir Reginald Hoover, he is called upon by Scotland Yard to get back the royal Crown of St. Edward which has been stolen by someone who signs her notes "Jenabell, Queen of the World." It turns out that what she's really after is a gigantic one-of-a kind jewel which has immense powers of its own. What follows is a series of encounters between Argoman, the Queen of the World, and her henchmen. The DVD print is faded and splicy, and the moviemaking itself is lackluster. The problems begin with the tone: lazy camp with no real visual or narrative flair. Roger Browne, as Hoover/Argoman, is boring when out of costume, and a low-rent Adam West-as-Batman when in costume. His character has some promise—he stole the Mona Lisa, he loses his powers for six hours if he has sex—but is neither consistent nor consistently funny. Dominique Boschero is unmemorable as the Queen of the World, though I do like her green glittery outfit with a headdressy helmet. Eduardo Fajardo is OK as Chandra, Hoover's butler/sidekick (pictured with Browne). Whether the problem was a too-low budget or too-paltry imagination, this just doesn't work. Mystery Science Theater 3000 really should have gotten their hands on this one. [DVD]

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