Exterminators of the Year 3000 (1983) Private Records Soundtrack Review
This is a release you should not pass up as it’s nearly gone.
Review: Berlin-based record label Private Records has been quietly releasing some superb Italian movie scores to vinyl, and their releases of Eaten Alive and this year’s Striker are examples of what they’ve been doing. One of their best previous releases is Detto Mariano’s Italian disco/electronic score to the post-apocalyptic action film Exterminators of the Year 3000, which was a staple of the VHS era. But before I talk about the music, here’s what the movie is about:
In a post-nuke wasteland, water is the most valued commodity. If you have it, everyone else wants it, and if you don’t then you’re out to get some. A black leather-clad hero named Alien drives a heavily armored car called The Exterminator, which he stole from Crazy Bull, the most fearsome warlord in the wasteland. The film starts off with Alien (Robert Lannucci) being run off the road by some Mad Max-type cops, and he is left for dead in the Exterminator. A boy searching for his missing scientist father finds Alien and rescues him by letting him drink some water. They team up (Alien is reluctant at first) and go to a reclusive mechanic named Papillon (Luciano Pigozzi) who is able to repair the Exterminator and turns one of the boy’s arms into a bionic weapon. Living with the wily old mechanic is a former flame of Alien’s, named Trash (Alicia Moro), who tells him after seeing him after so long, “You’re rotten, Alien – rotten to the guts!” I suppose it helps that Trash looks like the Warrior Woman from The Road Warrior because he doesn’t seem to mind the insult. So this band of good guys fights off Crazy Bull’s marauders from stealing water from a bunch of Nuke Mutants who only appear once in the movie. Alien, Trash, and the sidekick kid look up at the end and are amazed that the sky is beginning to rain for the first time since the apocalypse.
The director, Jules Harrison (actually Giuliano Carnimeo), imbues the film with as much bang he can get with his buck, and if you’re a fan of post-nuke riffs of the Mad Max films, then look no further. Mariano’s music is actually one of the best things about the movie, which (in full disclosure) I’ve never been a fan of. That said, I have a history with Exterminators of the Year 3000. It was one of three movies that inspired me to write my book World Gone Wild: A Survivor’s Guide to Post-Apocalyptic Movies. The other two (in case you wondered) were 2019: After the Fall of New York and Land of Doom. That aside, Mariano’s creatively intense action/science fiction score to Exterminators immediately brought the inspiration back to me. From the opening theme, the music instantly conjures images of scratchy analogue wasteland, and the magic never stops. The score to this film is catchy, memorable, and exhilarating and should be played at full volume for maximum effect.
Over the course of 29 tracks and two LP records, Private Records has provided the very first release of the entire score to Exterminators of the Year 3000, and the title is limited to 250 copies and technically the album is sold out, but copies can still be ordered from Discogs and via Private Records. Each album of this release comes with two posters (so cool, guys), one of which is comprised of the set of Italian lobby card collection. This is a release you should not pass up as it’s nearly gone.