Universal Soldier: Regeneration

USA 2009
Director: John Hyams
Cast: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren, Andrei Arlovski, Garry Cooper

97 Min. | OmU | Original with german Subtitles


In 2009, nobody really believed in the »Universal Soldier« franchise anymore. After two theatrical films with Jean-Claude Van Damme and two additional sequels for American cable tv, the series had run its course. But reports of its demise were apparently greatly exaggerated. Because John Hyams’ straightto-video production »Universal Soldier: Regeneration« turned out to be a sensation. Hyams’ film about the reactivated universal soldier Luc Deveraux, who is sent into the Chernobyl nuclear power plant to prevent a nuclear catastrophe, did not only reanimate the franchise. It also redefined the boundaries of the action movie. The energetic but still clearly laid out action sequences filmed by DP Peter Hyams don’t just surprise because they are tough. They also convey a sense that violence always has something inherently destructive even for those who employ it. This is why a sadness unusual for this genre permeates the film and the acting of its stars. Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren might be fighting machines, but they are also lost souls – robbed of all humanity by the never-ending wars they have been created for.