Operation Delta Force 5: Random Fire (2000)

ODF 5 DVD CoverAt the culmination of the mind-control scheme perpetrated by terrorist Jaffar Bin Asim and his Russian psychiatrist buddy, Captain Kennedy brings Sgt. Johnson back from the brink of being turned into a suicide bomber by countering his mental conditioning by reminding Johnson of that time they were in a dicey situation and he saved one bullet for himself.

“The last bullet’s for me,” they intone again and again, a mantra of ultra bad ass-ism so potent it shatters the evil Russian’s mind melding! It was also a testament to this, the final Operation Delta Force movie, that I too began chanting it and searched in vain for that last bullet that surely must have been lost somewhere in my couch cushions!

While the first four films in the series had its ups (Jeff Fayhe’s unnatural gravelly voice in Operation Delta Force, Captain Lang and his father toasting each other with vodka on a Russian submarine in Operation Delta Force 2: Mayday, Jim Fitzpatrick pointing at a drug kingpin while hovering in a helicopter outside the druggie’s villa in Operation Delta Force 3: Clear Target) and its downs (almost all of Operation Delta Force 4: Deep Fault), Operation Delta Force 5: Random Fire is by fits and starts so silly, confusing, and boring that the best part of it had to be the title, but only because everything felt like it was totally random!

For instance, Captain Kennedy (Trae Thomas looking more at home at some kind of urban cowboy bar with his well-groomed goatee, then at getting all his guys killed on botched missions) has an ex wife who just happens to be a soldier, too. And she works with Captain Kennedy’s boss!

And when she’s not engaging in seditious behavior like passing classified information to Kennedy while he’s on suspension, she’s getting in his face and telling him she’s been assigned to go on his mission and she’s going whether he likes it or not! And then it’s time for the mission and guess what? She doesn’t go! And no one says anything about it! Like that big dramatic domestic argument they just had never happened!

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There are even more important elements of the story though that make such little sense, you begin to wonder whether you just might be suffering a dose of Jaffar’s mind control! Like Jaffar’s entire scheme!

Since he’s the head of a rebel group in Kenya you might assume he is battling the Kenyan government because of some grievance or other, but all he does is kill the U.S. ambassador to Kenya. Twice!

Sure, it’s embarrassing to the Kenyan government, but why pick a fight with the United States if you don’t have any actual beef with them? At best, you’re going to get the U.S. to have its ambassador move into a Holiday Inn across the border in Tanzania until things get sorted out and at worst, you’re to going have something like a Tomahawk Cruise Missile shoved up your terrorist ass (which is what happens).

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But what is even more moronic is that Jaffar has this mind control weapon at his disposal and he just uses it to have people blow themselves up!

He has one guy crash a plane into a train (easily the best part of the movie) and another guy blow himself up at a African Economic Conference being held in Boston. And the guy in Boston was one of the Delta Force guys Kennedy left behind following the catastrophic failure of the mission at the beginning of the film (Yeah, I know – worst Operation Delta Force captain ever) thus giving the U.S. in general and Delta Force in particular even more incentive to go back to Kenya and hunt him down!

Could Jaffar not think of anything else to do with brianwashed slaves? Suicide bombers are a dime a dozen – all you have to do is watch the news any night of the week.

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Why not try to put people under your control in positions of authority or with access to classified information or weapons or wealth? Or maybe even execute a plan with a little more subtley than a dude singing “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” and trying to blow up Delta Force while they attempt to rescue him? I suppose that’s the difference between something called The Manchurian Candidate and Operation Delta Force 5: Random Fire,.

Delta Force is even more anonymous in this movie than in any of the other four. I don’t even know if some of the guys had names! They also didn’t distinguish themselves during their various missions, suffering multiple mental breakdowns during the first mission and conducting various raids with anything but stealthy efficiency. Where is the quiet self-confidence of Captain Lang using hand signals to sneak up and clear an area of anti-American vermin?

Yossi Wein (also director of Operation Delta Force 2: Mayday) seemingly abandons any pretense that these guys are a secretive special ops force and lathers on the large, colorful explosions and a constant barrage of gunfire while Delta screams their fool heads off! A dismal finale to the series that fans can easily ignore since it doesn’t share any continuity with the previous four films.

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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