24th Jun2024

‘Agent Recon’ Review

by Jim Morazzini

Stars: Derek Ting, Chuck Norris, Marc Singer, Yarett Harper, Jason Scott Jenkins, Nikki Leigh, Christopher Showerman | Written and Directed by Derek Ting

It wasn’t mentioned in any of the film’s publicity, but Agent Recon is the third film in a trilogy that began in 2017 with Agent Intelligence and continued with Agent Revelation in 2021. That’s understandable, considering the first film was so unmemorable I forgot I’d seen it until I saw the second film’s flashback scenes. The second one did stick with me, but only because it was such a train wreck

A quick voiceover by Jim Yung, played by writer/director/star Derek Ting, gives anyone who hasn’t seen them a basic idea of their plot which involve evil aliens called Kinians, a super secret organization devoted to fighting them and the mysterious red dust that can either let the aliens control you, or give you superpowers depending on the needs of the script.

Agent Recon opens with a raid gone wrong and a helicopter crash that leads to the death of Yung’s mentor Alastair, a tech billionaire based on Elon Musk’s opinion of himself and played by Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Michael Dorn in the previous film. He had been experimenting with technology like Musk’s Neurolink, so they were able to take a copy of his consciousness, which had uploaded to the cloud, and implant it into an android body that happens to look like Chuck Norris (Hero and the Terror, Missing in Action).

They become involved with Colonel Green (Marc Singer; The Beastmaster, High Desert Kill) and his men, Harden (Yarett Harper; Manifest Evil, The Art of Fighting) and Miller (Jason Scott Jenkins; Jackals, Murder Syndicate), who are searching for a missing unit led by Captain Lila Rupert (Nikki Leigh; The Sand, Butch Cassidy and the Wild Bunch) who you’ll be absolutely shocked to learn is the colonel’s daughter. She’s being held captive by Dr. Penn (Christopher Showerman; Waking Karma, Scooby-Doo! and the Beach Beastie) who wants to harness the alien’s power for his own purposes.

While Agent Revelation was a terrible film, it did have some decent production values and high-tech gadgetry to justify its science-fiction tag. Agent Recon however might as well have been a straight action film as most of its runtime is taken up by Ting running around in the woods or what looks like an Airsoft arena fighting what looks like the same five or six masked stuntmen or their leader who has a leather hoodie so you can tell he’s the boss.

If you’re watching Agent Recon to see Norris, he’s barely on-screen and spends most of his time sitting on a table dispensing lines like “You weren’t chosen, you were called upon.” The does show up for the final fight and gets to pay homage to Invasion USA and Jesse Ventura’s mini cannon scene from Predator.

He also gets to throw some kicks and punches, and while he’s in good shape for a man in his 80s, it’s obvious the camera and stunt team are doing the real work. It’s not as bad as the camera trickery used to give the villain superhuman speed though, at times he’s sped up to the point that watching him run is comical. For his part, Marc Singer mostly growls and shoots at people. He’s on the screen a bit more than Norris, but is memorable only for how rough he looks, like he’s been on a bender since the final Beastmaster sequel.

Given the previous two films, I wasn’t expecting a lot from Agent Recon, but I was hoping that something that got Norris’ attention, and had the budget to afford him, would at least be mindless fun. It is mindless, with a finale that involves outrunning a nuclear explosion, but I really can’t say it was fun.

* 1/5

Agent Recon is available on Digital and VOD Platforms via Quiver Distribution.

Review originally posted on Voices From the Balcony

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