Cyberpunk Review » UCF: Abstract Messiah

April 14, 2011

UCF: Abstract Messiah

Movie Review By: Mr. Roboto

Year: 2011

Directed by: Laszlo Kovacs

Written by: Laszlo Kovacs

** No IMDB Data Available **

Degree of Cyberpunk Visuals: Moderate

Correlation to Cyberpunk Themes: High

Key Cast Members:

  • Sue: Lisa Dee
  • Jazz: Andrew Hookway
  • Marshall Pax: Bryan Patrick Stoyle
  • Professor Michael Vanguard: Michael O’Hear
  • Enoch Crom: Timothy Dugan
  • Voros Farkash, Fallen Soldier, & Luddite Militia Member: Laszlo Kovacs
  • Rating: 6 out of 10

    Overview: Our resident Cecil B. DeMille, Lazlo Kovacs, and his pals at Key Pixel have brought us the follow-up to the short underground fave UCF: Toronto Cybercide. The second chapter, Abstract Messiah, continues the story of Toronto’s rebuilding struggles as a new enemy come to the forefront determined to stop the cyborgs.

    Kovacs said that the movie was about 98% complete and wanted to send a screener to preview. From what I’ve seen, it looks fairly ready for prime-time. Like many low-budget films, there are some issues to deal with, but they’re easy to overlook as long as you’re not expecting Blade Runner-quality fare.


    Duct tape is just a good as a band-aid.

    The Story: Pax is called back to Toronto to retrieve the body of his former partner, and gets to meet up with his UCF mentor, a history professor. The professor is reported as kidnapped when he misses an appointment. Pax and company are called in to investigate when a member of the Luddites is considered the prime suspect. The investigation leads the UCF team to a prison for cyborgs where the Luddites plan to use the inmates in their ultimate plan; To use retrieve the nanotechnology in Pax’s deceased partner.


    The game. A recurring theme is the chess game; Specifically, how the action is equivalent to moves and counter-moves on a chess board.

    If that’s true then Equilibrium’s gun-fu scenes should be considered hands of Texas Hold-Em.

    Seriously, every action movie would like to be compared to chess; That all the gun-play and violence has some intellectual reason and not just eye candy. For Abstract Messiah, they take the comparison to a new level starting with a real chess match between Pax and his Foundation mentor.

    UCF Chess Game

    “While you were watching us learn, we were watching you teach.”

    Such back and forth banter isn’t uncommon in action movies, as each side tries to impart their vision to the other. But when the two are bitter rivals, diametrical opposites of each other, that’s when the chess game quickly becomes an NBA-style trash talk fest, right before everyone STFU and lets their guns speak for them. Fortunately, Abstract Messiah doesn’t get to the trash-talk even though Crom does come off as the right-wingnut zealot type (nicely played). In fact, I keep getting this feeling that this movie is just one minor move in a much larger game.


    Knuckle dusted. If there was a major problem with Abstract Messiah, it was the fight scenes. The fisticuffs weren’t all that convincing, but when a limited budget limits the use of professional stunt people you just have to use what you got and keep them safe for a possible part three.

    Luddite Leader Enoch Crom

    “The Luddites refuse to be slaves to the cybernetic machines, and I refuse to continue being a slave to the machinations of the Foundation.”

    Conclusion: Since the original UCF short was released back in ‘06 there was a call for more of the Luddites. This should satisfy them for a good 80 minutes as the Luddites are now front and center.

    Everyone should consider getting Abstract Messiah even if just to support indie movie makers like Key Pixel. Even with amateurish production on a shoe-string budget they still manage to make a movie that’s more watchable than what some major distributors with trillion-dollar purses have been cranking out lately.

    One has to wonder what UCF 3 would be like, especially if they get a larger budget. Dare to dream… until Kovacs sends a PM saying he has a screener ready to preview.

    This post has been filed under Amateur Film Production, Cyberpunk movies from 2010 - 2020, Cyberpunk Review Exclusive, Upcoming Movies, Dystopic Future Movies, 6 Star Movies, Man-machine Interface, Good low-budget movies by Mr. Roboto.


    April 14, 2011

    SSJKamui said:

    Looks interesting. But I haven’t seen the first movie yet.

    Kovacs said:

    You can watch Toronto Cybercide online at IMDb or Vimeo:

    And if you like it (shameless plug) buy a copy on Amazon:

    BW said:

    was in Abstract Messiah. Thanks for the kind words.

    BPS said:

    Thanks for the review!

    SSJKamui - The first short is online for free on IMDB:

    SSJKamui said:

    @BPS: Thanks for the link.(I guess IMDB is a serious, legal source but to be sure, I want to ask if that stream is legal before I do anything. )

    Kovacs said:

    Yup, legal & legit.

    April 15, 2011

    SSJKamui said:

    Yeah. Thanks for the explaination.

    April 17, 2011

    Nobody said:

    Yeah, because being “legal” is so cyberpunk. What a pussy.

    Not that amateurish crap like this is worth viewing anyway.

    By the way, by giving this so-called movie a rating of 6 you’re saying that it’s as good as Johnny Mnemonic, huh? What a joke.

    April 18, 2011

    SSJKamui said:

    Maybe, you are right but it’s rather unreasonable to publically say which illegal things you want to do in a place, where the potential “victim” of your crime can read it.

    Kovacs said:

    Maybe I’ll just put that on the BluRay release: “Nobody said it’s amateurish crap”.


    SSJKamui said:

    Good idea. Lol.

    April 22, 2011

    0m1kr0n said:

    looks like it was made by office workers in vacant parts of their building..just being honest

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