Dark Angel AKA I Come In Peace (Blu-ray Review)

Dark-AngelI can’t say growing up that I was a Dolph Lundgren fan.  Even if I wasn’t big on him then, looking back there’s some sort of nostalgia with him though.  I never watched his ‘solo’ movies due to my childhood bias as he was the bad guy from Rocky IV and killed Apollo Creed.  The only adventures I went on with Dolph were Masters Of The Universe (not even he could stop my boyhood He-Man fandom) and Universal Soldier.  So, coming into Dark Angel (known in the US as I Come In Peace), I am quite the noob.  And, boy, Scream Factory’s release has me itching to dig further into the Lundgren back catalog with this release.  Oddly, I never knew of this movie’s existence until now.  I don’t remember anything from it, be it box art at the video store or catching a few minutes on TV.  This was a completely fresh viewing.

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Jack Caine, a Houston cop, is trying to bring down white collar drug dealers known as the “White Boys”.  After his partner is murdered along with a bunch of White Boys, Caine is forced to team with FBI agent Arwood “Larry” Smith.  Larry and Caine not only must deal with drug pushers on this planet but an extraterrestrial one as well.  Talec has come to this planet, shooting up civilians with heroin stolen from the White Boys and extracting a brain endorphin used as a drug on his home planet.  Alien cop Azeck is hot on his trail, telling Caine and Smith that if he’s not stopped, others will begin to show, endangering more and more lives of the Earth’s population.

I’m gonna let the cat out of the bag early.  I had a blast with this movie.  It gave me the vibe that the first Highlander and Terminator movies had.  The lighting, the scummy areas of the city and that sweet sweet synth score.  The film is pretty simple and a little repetitive.  In its defense, with each kill, they show us more and more of what Talec is doing to the victims.  Dolph gives his usual laughable but entertaining performance, but he does nail some of his one-liners perfectly (ESPECIALLY his last one).

The film is known in the US as I Come In Peace, but its real title is Dark Angel.  The print they used of the film does display it as I Come In Peace for you US version purists.  I think aside from the title, the cuts of the film are identical.

This moody looking film features a nice detective/chase story that isn’t overly complicated and is quite fun to see come to fruition.  All the effects work still holds up quite well.  Its refreshing to see action that is well framed and shot.  Action that has real buildings and cars crashing and blowing up.  This is how it’s done, folks.  The gore effects also still work quite well.

Dark Angel is a super fun action/sci fi B-movie with some horror elements to it.  Its got some wonderful action sequences to keep you enthralled.  The film also features some cool imaginative sci fi design and plot devices.  There’s a lot here to love, whether you are an action fan, sci-fi fan or horror nut.  It’s a wonderful mish mash.  And did I mention a lot of fun?

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Dark Angel says “I Come in 1080p MPEG-4” encode.  It’s a great looking picture.  There’s a perfect amount of grain helping add to the mood of the film.  The level of detail is solid.  There are a lot of dark alley type scenes, but it does a good work with them as they are lit pretty well.  You can see the wetness, light reflection and surface of the city roads perfectly.  Also, check out agent Smith’s care at night.  You can make out about every noticeable amount of dirt, smudges and whatnot on his windows and auto body.  It’s quite a beautiful image.  Skin tones are good and consistent.  Clothing textures and patterns are distinct and well detailed.

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Dolph Lundgren performs through a 5.1 DTS-HD MA track.  The volume on it is a little low, so you’ll have to turn it up a little bit more than your normal levels.  Once set though, this thing is crisp and clear.  The explosions and gun fire are nice and loud.  The “I come in peace” line is quite striking and chilling in the track every time its said.  Scream Factory also provides a 2.0 DTS-HD MA track for those wanting the original theatrical experience.  This track is quite impressive as it gives more “oompf” than one would expect.  It’s loud and clear.  Both tracks result in a win-win scenario with whichever you pick.

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For those of you who prefer the title I Come In Peace, like usual, Scream Factory provides a reverse cover with the original poster/VHS art for the US release.  The extras appear light, but through the interviews, provide plenty of content.  They appear with 1080p MPEG-4 video and Dolby Digital 2.0 audio.

  • A Look Back At “Dark Angel”: Featurette With Dolph Lundgren And Director Craig R. Baxley – Dolph, the director and actor Brian Benben go through the production of the film from start to finish.  Its amazing how much more intelligent Dolph is in these interviews than his characters have come across on the screen over the years.  Oh, and take a drink every time one of these guys talks about how CGI wasn’t used back then and it was all real.
  • Trailer (2:43) – The trailer features the original title Dark Angel
  • Poster And Still Gallery – 47 behind the scenes photos, publicity stills, lobby cards and posters from all territories.

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It’s pretty obvious I had a ton of fun with this movie.  If you like great B-movie action or are a fan of The Terminator or Highlander, don’t pass this one up.  Scream Factory delivers a great picture with a very complimentary surround track.  There’s a great featurette looking back at the film that provides sufficient content for fans and those wanting extra.  This is a really cool movie I never knew about, but I am now quite a fan of.  I’ll definitely be showing this one to people I know that haven’t seen it yet.



Brandon is the host, producer, writer and editor of The Brandon Peters Show (thebrandonpetersshow.com) on the Creative Zombie Studios Network. At Why So Blu he is a Writer/Reviewer. Brandon is a lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash. You can also find older essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

1 Response to “Dark Angel AKA I Come In Peace (Blu-ray Review)”

  1. Gerard Iribe

    One of my favorite sci-fi flicks ever. I wore my VHS out long ago. It’s great its been done justice on Blu-ray!