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Blue Tornado (1991)

When his best buddy (Ted McGinley) disappears in a cloud of flying light blobs, NATO flier Alex Long (Dirk Benedict) becomes obsessed with UFOs and initiates further close encounters, irking his cover-up-minded superiors (including an underused David Warner). Finally, Alex climbs a European mountain on foot and has the feeblest imaginable alien epiphany. With a proliferation of barking Euro-accents, one of Patsy Kensit's trademarked embarrassing heroine performances and acres of Top Gun-style stock flying footage, this hardware-heavy aviation movie is more reminiscent of the very uninteresting Project UFO TV series, with simple (and cheap) bright lights in place of even cheesy alien effects, than the 1990s reincarnation of the UFO investigation-government conspiracy drama in The X-Files. Benedict has at least had a decent haircut since Battlestar Galactica (1978) but still acts like a square-jawed sequoia; subsequently, he starred in the similar, slightly better cable TV movie Official Denial (1993). Directed by Antonio Bido (under the silly assumed name Tony B. Bobb), returning to the fold a decade after his gialli, Solamente nero (The Bloodstained Shadow) and Il gatto dagli occhi di giada (The Cat's Victims).

First published in this form here.

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