The Cobra/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< The Cobra

The film starts out with so many exploitation themes at once you might think this movie could well evolve into anything. Right from the start you have Bondsploitation, Drugsploitation and Giallo elements, before it starts off into the colorful world of Eurospy cinema. The movie scores big points with its magnificent locations. The entire movie takes place mostly in Turkey and the opening shots of the coastline really make for a good atmosphere. The film gets a bit political and shows that it is very much a child of its time, involving the United Nations, communist China and the oil business. In a way, the movie exploits most of the stereotypes of these four elements. Cue curtains for Mike Rand, played by Peter Martell, not exactly a great actor, but he must have had something of a Steve McQueen like impression on producers. He is not James Bond, no tuxedos, no martinis, no expensive cars. Rand is a simple guy, a go-to guy for missions there afterwards nobody needs to know about. He talks like a construction worker, dresses like you would not dress investigating in the UN and the oil business, and yet thinks women would fall on their knees before him (sometimes they do). He is surrounded by a host of bizarre side characters, none of them well established by the script, which I would say is close to a mess, and fails to establish a clear line of suspense. But that does not cut down the entertainment factor. There are chases, shoot outs, intrigue, women with nice legs and some expensive looking helicopter rides and other fancy production design. I liked the film quite a bit, mostly for its well-meaning spirit and nice atmosphere. It suffers clearly from depth and would have made a better impression on me with a better lead actor, but all in all, The Cobra is a decent under-the-radar Eurospy movie with some good moments.

Sebastian, co-founder and admin of the Grindhouse Cinema Database (GCDb). He also started The Spaghetti Western Database (SWDb), The Quentin Tarantino Archives, The Robert Rodriguez Archives, Nischenkino and Furious Cinema. Outside of movies, he works on the intersection of technology and policy. He lives in Berlin, Germany.
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