Last Sentinel, The  - Brian
Director: Jesse V. Johnson
Starring: Don The Dragon Wilson Katee Sackhoff Keith David
Country: USAThe Last Sentinel
has the rare distinction of being one of the few good Sci-Fi Channel Original movies. Despite what the cover of the DVD suggests, this story is more about Don “The Dragon” Wilson’s character Tallis
than Katee Sackoff’s character who, interestingly, is never named.
The story starts out simple enough. In this post-apocalyptic world, our hero, Tallis must struggle to hunt and survive while avoiding Drone Patrols. The Drones are essentially bio-engineered humans created initially for law enforcement. When the Drones became too powerful, they revolted, as one might suspect, and they now run the world. Except for one occasion, you never see the faces of these aggressors, but thanks to one of Angel’s overly long monologues, we learn that they vaguely resemble human.
In case you were wondering, Angel is the name of the talking AI that inhabits Tallis’s gun. Tallis himself is far from any ordinary human. Our hero is an enhanced human super soldier, infused with nano machines in his blood stream. Other than allowing him to get shot multiple times without flinching, I’m not entirely sure what else these machines are good for. They don’t heal him or help him regenerate faster.
Over the course of the movie, we are treated to numerous flashbacks of Tallis’s life before the Drones took over. I didn’t realize it until later, but the filming for each time period has a slightly distinguishing feature: namely color. Flashbacks appear to have a very light-saturated and washed out feel, while present-day shots have more of an orange tint to them. The flashbacks don’t really foreshadow or establish any scenes to come. They mostly serve to show what Tallis used to be before the Drone takeover. The most interesting of these flashbacks is the apparent usage by the United States of child soldiers.
As the story continues, Tallis makes the acquaintance of Katee Sackoff, or Girl
in the film. After a rocky start, the two quickly learn to trust and depend on one another. Tallis and Katee pool their efforts to find and destroy a nerve center for the drones. If this console is destroyed, then the drones will effectively die. Apparently, the drones don’t seem to think this is a major problem as Tallis and Katee are somehow able to sneak in and out with minimal resistance.
However, the main twist comes when it is realized that the Drones are adapting and have created Super Drones. These Super Drones don blood red armor, wielding machine guns and
katanas. In a particularly gruesome scene, Tallis realizes the Super Drones are tracking him via the chip implant in his left eye. I won’t go into detail, but suffice it to say, that chip had to go.
In a climactic battle, Tallis and the last remaining Super Drone do battle with katanas. This scene is intriguing for the simple fact that the Super Drone is far more interesting a character than anyone else in the story…and he JUST showed up. Whereas Tallis is a worn-out super soldier, the Super Drone is simply fighting to survive and even has a concept of “family” noting the Drones Tallis has killed.
Overall, this movie has an interesting sci-fi atmosphere, but suffers from poor pacing and no real resolution to the conflict.
Quotes: Super Drone: "You have killed what can't be killed. We were so close, our great task almost complete. You have destroyed it all."
Tallis: "Your great task was murder. You're wrong."
Super Drone: "Look upon my murdered family, soldier."
Tallis: "Prepare to join them."