Plot: Cooper (Robert Ginty) is an explosives expert, trained by the military and working in urban demolition teams. But work in the field has dried up and he plans to head west to find greener pastures, but first he drops by to his old friend and mentor, Harry (Cameron Mitchell). Cooper served with Harry in Vietnam, with Harry training him in explosives and the two have been close friends since. As it turns out, Harry is involved in some gun running missions and is taking supplies to a rebel faction in Latin America, where a despot rules with an iron fist. Cooper agrees to join him on his next run, to look after him and make sure Harry returns home safe and sound. But the militia is wise to the operation and soon, Harry is dead and the truck has pushed down a mountain, with Cooper assumed dead. But Cooper survives, finds the assassin tasked to derail the arms transport, kills him and assumes his identity. Now Cooper is determined to take down the oppressive regime and avenge Harry, but can even a skilled soldier like Cooper take down an entire totalitarian government?
Entertainment Value: A movie with Robert Ginty on the warpath and out for revenge is always on my radar, especially if it involves Cameron Mitchell wrestling women in oil at a redneck bar. Mission Kill is an action movie without a ton of action, but proves to be a fun ride. The story is fine, with a guy out to avenge his war buddy and ends up helping a rebel force against a cruel dictatorship. Robert Ginty is his usual self, one of the more unique 80s action regulars, but Cameron Mitchell and Olivia D’Abo tend to steal the show when they’re around. Mitchell has minimal screen time, but makes the most of it, chewing up scenes left and right. D’Abo is horribly miscast as a Latin rebel soldier, given a laughable wig and an awkward accent, but she is beyond entertaining. So bad casting, but it works out to be a fun part of the movie. Despite the moderate volume of action, the movie is never dull and has some memorable moments. If you’re looking for a wild, Cannon Group style action movie, Mission Kill isn’t that, but it is a fun b movie with some hilarious performances.
No nakedness. There’s not much blood, despite a good amount of people being gunned down. But the most memorable instance of violence is when a soldier shoots a child in cold blood. You don’t see moments like that often, so it was a bold and effective choice in my opinion. The action isn’t constant here, but there’s a solid number of fun set pieces, mostly shoot outs. Some good explosions too, though the movie loves to splice in poorly matched stock footage at times. The dialogue is about what you’d expect, with a lot of tough guy talk and Semper Fi, but there are some memorable exchanges. Olivia D’Abo’s awful accent makes all of her lines fun, while Cameron Mitchell’s ham handed presence is also a good time. Not much in terms of one liners, as this has a more serious tone than most of the 80s action fare. The awkward stock footage, epic miscasting of D’Abo, and child murder earn Mission Kill a couple crazy points, but overall the movie falls within standard 80s action parameters.
Overall Insanity: 2/10