It’s a tried and true formula for science fiction success: create an exciting sci-fi universe, show us some teasey glimpses of it, then send the characters to Earth before you run out of money. If the alien warrior heroes befriend some scrappy Earthlings when they arrive, so be it. Time Guardian did this, Spaced Invaders did it, and even the Masters of the Universe movie featured Dolph Lundgren’s He-Man befriending a not-yet-scary-thin (and consequentially much prettier) Courtney Cox at prom somewhere in the Midwest. And let’s not forget Jesse Ventura’s Abraxis, the movie Lifetime would have made if it were staffed by Jack Kirby and Jim Starlin.
Galaxis (not to be confused with Galaxina, a z-budget space western about a sexy robot who fails at stealing Barbarella’s thunder) tells a similar tale. Brigitte Nielson plays Ladera, a space gladiator who subscribes to the wear-bikinis-to-battle school of movie logic. Ladera is looking for a magic crystal, which she must find before Richard Moll does. And guess where she looks?
Squirted out in the woeful middle of the hateful 90s, Galaxis is a cheap pastiche of better movies that came before. There’s a scene where bad guys rampage through a police station Terminator style, there’s a steel-girder showdown that looks stolen from Darkman, and the whole “evil wizard jacks up the innocent for magic crystals” angle has been done to death, most notably in the underappreciated Dark Crystal. It goes without saying that Galaxis achieves its ripoffery with a budget that would disappoint Sam Raimi (who happens to be in the film). The result is rather like watching cosplayers act out a better film, and not succeeding very well.
I will be the first to admit that I like bad movies. I have personally watched Jean-Claude Van Damme’s stunt double kick a terminally ill Raul Julia into a wall in Street Fighter over 7 times. I watched Category 7 and liked it so much that I nearly cried when my fiance wouldn’t let me buy Category 6. Heck, I actually bought Magic Sword under the mistaken belief that it was The Sword and the Sorcerer. But believe this battle-hardened fan of cinema crap, there is nothing worthwhile about Galaxis. It’s dull, ineffectual, and lacks the infectious charm that has saved so many awful movies.
It’s just bad.