I’ve boasted before about how Sam Raimi directed the nintendo commercial I was in, but it wasn’t the only time we were both involved in a production. He and I both starred in a movie! Well, I had one line. And he plays a villainous hippy in a bad wig. And it wasn’t much of a movie. Ladies and gentlemen, it was Stryker’s War. The plot: vietnam vet returns home to find girlfriend abducted by
crazy cultists, shoots the place up; warnings about the deadly nature of jarts go unheeded. It was a blood-bucket of a movie, in the very literal sense that they had buckets of blood, premixed on set in the morning, so they would have sufficient blood for all the scenes to be shot that day. It is the sort of movie you never expect to see the light of day. But one day I googled myself (come on, you know you’ve done it) and amazingly, I had an entry on the IMDB. When I first found it, the reviews of the film described it as the D-movie crap that it surely is. But as Sam Raimi’s star rose, so did the evaluation of the film: now you can find glowing reviews calling it a “camp masterpiece” with a healthy 3-star rating.
I still have my copy of the videocassette that my high-school buddy PA miraculously found at a store out in like Maine, where it had been released straight to video as “Thou Shalt Not Kill… unless violence demands revenge”. I doubt it’s playable anymore even if I still owned a VCR. But I can present to you here the key 1 minute of the film where I deliver my immortal line and some weighty foreshadowing re: jarts is introduced to the dramatic arc of the film:
Jarts, of course, being those big lawn darts, right? Well you know what they say: if there’s a gun above the mantle on the set, it must be fired before the end of the play. Lo, the same principle is true of jarts. Chekov’s Jarts, you might say.
For those with an exceptional tolerance for forgettable low-budget film-making, I present the full slideshow:
Now that the internet has arrived, nothing will ever disappear again. In fact, Stryker’s War is now available, in a Collector’s Edition release no less. Get yours today!