Yes, the head of this prestigious academy is none other than Richard Grieco, who is rapidly catching up to David Carradine and Eric Roberts on our list of actors whose presence guarantees that the movie you're about to watch is going to be a 10 mile-long flaming radioactive garbage truck pileup that will render sizeable chunks of your brain permanently dead, useless scar tissue. He must have really, really wanted to grab for the brass ring of "worst hardass drill sergeant in movie history", because he lays down the most manically baffling and stupid acting we've seen since Nicolas Cage's infamous runaway performance in Deadfall.[2]

This is all made exponentially worse thanks to the screenwriter, or just whoever the fuck behind the scenes decided that "character development" means "picking random obnoxious flaws and quirks out of a hat", which leads to Sgt. Grieco blurting out stupid shit like "for the love of pete" and having a bizarrely specific hatred for people from Queens and/or possibly homosexuals...and don't even get him started on queens from Queens. Shit, now look what you've done, he's gone Full Grieco on us:

...And it's all pretty much downhill from there. Richard Grieco goes progressively more and more off the rails, as we're treated to a series of special, intimate moments, like him intensely smelling Slater's jockstrap and personal effects in his office while his henchmen stand around looking at each other in extreme discomfort. It's OK though, turns out he's just an alien! That must be one of their customs, and judging it as somehow weird or extremely fucked up and not cool would be racist. Oh, somehow all of this has something to do with opening a portal to Griecoland and letting more of his kind flood through into our dimension or whatever, which obviously must be prevented at all costs, because just imagine a bunch of those motherfuckers running around all over the place.

By now you're probably wondering what the point is to any of this, and really to life in general in a world where Absolution exists. We can't help you with the second part, but as far as the plot goes, that bland, generic alien invasion we just mentioned isn't going to stop itself. Our planet is in the hands of master spy Mario Lopez, who enlists as a student so he can find his missing squadmate and shut down the alien teleporter. Wait, did we say "master spy"?

Jesus Christ, he's actually worse at espionage than Duncan fucking Jax. At least D-Jax usually manages to get away with the stupid shit he's pulling. Mario spends most of his time getting caught every five minutes and literally falling ass-backwards through skylights. And our personal favorite detail, he gets discovered as a spy because he brought a fucking Precious Memories love-tunnel picture of himself high-fiving the other deep-cover operative who they've already captured as part of his field kit. If the shadowy alien menace can't deal with this guy, we probably didn't have much to worry about either way. They'd undoubtedly have turned out to be one of those super lame alien races that you can stop by sneezing on them or throwing your Bud Light in their face.

Or maybe they're just really bad at managing their time, a theory strongly supported by the series of scenes where Mario Lopez and his spy buddies spring themselves from the clink and leisurely wander all over the base reading classified documents, spinning around in the C.O.'s chair, and talking (rather loudly) to Jor-El Amphibian Space Hitler over the giant glowing transdimensional intercom portal while all of the evil dudes hit the gym to put a serious fuck-strangle on leg day.

Absolution walks that extremely fine and awkward tightrope between science fiction feature film and softcore gay pornography with just the right balance to ensure that fans of either genre - no matter what their expectations - are guaranteed to be disappointed in every possible way. If you're the type of person who goes hunting for your gay porn by fishing ripe sci-fi turd nuggets out of video store bargain bins in $3.75 3-packs and you're itching to see at least one - Jesus, even just one - of the 53 minutes worth of nose-to-nose steamy locker room confrontation scenes finally burst the dam of uncomfortable latent masculinity issues and explode into Slater having a good old-fashioned vascular 3-way with Pvt. Stink-Finger and Lance Cpl. Guillermo "Hog Booger" Ramirez, well, you're shit outta luck.

Of course, if you came looking for an actual movie, you're double fucked (and, let's face it, at this point you'd totally deserve it, since you'd have to be jenkem-shitfaced stupid to figure you'd find anything even close to that here.) Here's one last lowlight reel on the house, just to spare you the indignity of ever thinking about renting Absolution.

Plot-8
Acting-9
Special Effects-7
Directing-8
Music / Sound-6
Overall-38/50


[2] In fact, we're pleased to announce that Richard Grieco's performance has earned the Awful Movie Reviews Senator Trent Memorial Severe Volume Control Issues Excellence in Oratory Award! The prize is a deep and lasting feeling of shame and self-loathing.

– Garrett "Hydrogen" Neil and Sean "Trillaphon" Neil (@trillaphon)

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