Max Reload and the Nether Blasters is a wonderful throwback to the 1980s adventure films we love but with an added mix of gaming.
What do The Lord of the Rings, Ghostbusters, and The Mighty Ducks all have in common. They were a group of people who “relied on each other to succeed against a greater evil.” Or so Reggie tells Max. This doesn’t even take into account the Top Gun and Batman references.
Fallout Games clerk Max Jenkins (Tom Plumley) comes across a rare copy of Nether Dungeon one night at work. This game is a part of Eugene Wylder (Greg Grunberg) and and Barton Grabowski’s (Joseph D. Reitman) Nether Game series. While Max is excited to discover the game, the “Curse of The Ages” gets unleashed on the world. He uploads the game on his site and rival Seth (Lukas Gage) soon takes it mobile.
Max can’t go at it alone and goes on this quest with friends Reggie (Joey Morgan) and Liz (Hassie Harrison). But even with their contemporary expertise at gaming, the trio are going to need Eugene and Barton’s help. They know this game inside and out. Together, they have the ability to defeat the forces of evil.
The visual effects aren’t cheesy. Sure, it feels over the top at times but it’s not a distraction. Not quite SyFy level over the top but it’s a solid B movie. You’re not going to get blockbuster-esque effects here. The film simply is not being made with a Marvel or Star Wars budget.
Scott Conditt and Jeremy Tremp, who share duties as directors, are no stranger to video games. Two years ago, the pair were at the helm of documentary Game Jame the Movie. Tremp also serves as the cinematographer. Anyway, the script doesn’t really break new ground in the genre. But again, it doesn’t have to do so at all. It just needs to find an audience. This is certainly going to be a trick when there is no shortage of content available.
I’m not a gamer at all. However, the film drew my interest when I took a look at the cast. How can you say no to a film that includes both Greg Grunberg and Kevin Smith?!? Let’s not forget Martin Kove from The Karate Kid franchise. I’ve been turning to nostalgic viewing for comfort during the pandemic. I’m glad I gave it a chance because the film offered some solid fun during uncertain times.
Max Reload and the Nether Blasters might not be a blockbuster but this indie film is a delight.
DIRECTORS/SCREENWRITERS: Scott Conditt & Jeremy Tremp
CAST: Tom Plumley, Hassie Harrison, Joey Morgan, Lukas Gage, Martin Kove, Joseph D. Reitman, Jesse Kove, Richard Lippert, and Greg Grunberg, featuring Lin Shaye, Kevin Smith, and Wil Wheaton