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Turbo Sub Download
It tells the story of Hugo Park a misspent youth whose only outlet for angst is a 4D fighting video-game called "Super Turbo Arena". When Pharaoh King, the Michael Jordan of cyber-sports, announces a tournament to determine who will join his pro-team, Hugo sets his eyes on the prize. But, Hugo isn't the only gamer who wants fame and glory. If Hugo wants to win he's going to have to beat Shamus, the all time Turbo champ at the local Pandemonium arcade, and Ruse Kapri, a feisty prep girl that knows how to win. Realizing he can't win on his skill alone, Hugo turns to his brother Tobias a former kick-boxer whose last match left him wheel-chair ridden. Together the two will mend old wounds and see if a washed up street fighter can teach a troubled teen how to become a virtual gladiator!
Hard to believe this is a film school short as the production values are pretty damn high. This film is a genre fusion of augmented reality computer gaming, martial arts and old school classic fight tournaments with some pretty decent performances. Set in a near future, the story features an underground tournament where contestants compete in an augmented reality martial arts game called Turbo. Those of you who are gamers, imagine an augmented reality version of Virtual Fighter (or Streetfighter) with your own life-like avatar, using your whole body as the controls, then throw in a Karate Kid storyline of a bullied boy trying to prove himself and a brother mentor that trains him to fight, and you have a predictable but highly enjoyable short flick. Why its so enjoyable is the movie knows its clichéd like hell but delivers it with style and a little self mocking wink.
Non gamers would enjoy this too for its kinetic energy, slick visuals, martial arts, cool soundtrack and good old boo the bad guy, cheer the good guy feel.
Being a film school production, I cant really say much bad things about it but I do agree with another reviewer on how fights are edited. Its a pity, the old school pan out long takes are not adopted these days. Having said that, the fights were were still enjoyable despite the fast edits.
To top it off the film ends with a superb end credit sequence that most Hollywood movies would envy.
Director Jarrett Lee Conaway does a lot in a surprisingly small amount of time. Choreographed fight scenes with flurries of special FX shots highlighted within, deceivingly big and futuristic sets, and a young cast you barely get to know, but quickly come to love.
In Turbo, star Hugo Park (acted well by Justin Chon of Twilight fame) gambles his brother Tobias' (Ilram Choi, a professional stuntman) rent away at a local club, playing a virtual reality game called 'Super Turbo Arena 2'. The game requires gloves and special glasses, it which point, the player's movements are tracked on screen. This movie couldn't have been made at a better time, as video consoles have finally reached a point where movement tracking controllers are a reality. Suddenly, the idea of STA2 seems more possible than ever.
This is obviously a movie by a gamer, for gamers, as every minute detail is covered. From the techno music backing the fights, to the announcer's voice, this film is a love letter to "Street Fighter", and many other 3D fighting games.
The only time I found myself disappointed was during key scenes near the end, when a final tournament is held, with a prize take of $50,000. I was looking forward to all of the fights leading up to the final tournament battle, but unfortunately, the only one you really get to see is a part-flashback style fight between the protagonist and his nemesis. I was hoping to be wowed by the action, but cutting what should be an important tournament for ALL of the characters in the film was not the best decision.
Overall, Turbo nails the atmosphere of Martial Arts video games, and by not overstaying its welcome, it succeeds in drawing you in and keeping you interested. Perhaps this is why so many video game films struggle... you can only do so much with a story you ultimately create yourself (In modern games).
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