DARK ANGEL, (aka I COME IN PEACE), Dolph Lundgren, 1990. ©Triumph Rreleasing Corporation

Revisiting I Come in Peace AKA Dark Angel (1990)

Plot: Jack Caine (Dolph Lundgren) is a Houston vice cop who’s forgotten the rule book. His self-appointed mission is to stop the drugs trade and the number one supplier Victor Manning. Whilst involved in an undercover operation to entrap Victor Manning, his partner gets killed, and a sinister newcomer enters the scene… Along with F.B.I. agent Lawrence Smith, the two investigate a spate of mysterious deaths; normal non-junkies dying of massive heroin overdoses and bearing the same horrific puncture marks on the forehead. This, coupled with Caine’s own evidence, indicates an alien force is present on the streets of Houston, killing and gathering stocks of a rare drug found only in the brain… Caine is used to fighting the toughest of criminals, but up to now they’ve all been human…

Keeping on my Christmas-set action movies today I thought I would pay tribute to Craig R. Baxley’s I Come in Peace AKA Dark Angel which is one of my absolute favourite Dolph Lundgren movies and this was also a special request from my friend Duvien.

I never liked the title Dark Angel and have always referred to this movie as I Come in Peace as it just makes more sense.

Although it came out in 1990 I still consider I Come in Peace an 80’s movie as it feels very much of the era in the best possible way. It’s everything perfect about 80’s action cinema with neon lighting throughout, steam-filled streets and a synthwave-esque score (featuring awesome electric guitars) from Jan Hammer.

The story is completely bonkers and it shouldn’t work and yet it does; it’s a work of insane genius which is still a rather unique action flick. The yuppy drug dealers alone known as White Boys would be an entertaining enough adversary for Dolph however, not only is he dealing with them but then he has to contend with a drug seeking alien called Talec (Hues) who takes pleasure in killing humans with his bizarre array of weapons. Speaking of which, if anyone wants to give me Talec’s gun for Christmas I wouldn’t complain as it can cause some serious damage with ease.

It doesn’t take itself all that seriously and Dolph has a twinkle in the eye clearly enjoying every moment. His character Jack is every cop cliche combined; he plays by his own rules, likes to work alone, gets shouted at by the police captain and has personal problems with his lady.

You ever notice how in action movies cops seem to have really nice homes? Jack’s apartment would likely be worth over $1 million these days; it’s nice and spacious and he clearly has a sense of style. Who would have thought you could afford such a place on a cop’s salary…

In terms of action we have car chases through the city streets, shoot-outs, punch ups and a hint of slasher movie with Matthias Hues’ alien killing people in rather vicious fashion.

I think this may be Matthias Hues’ best role as he really makes it his own and it’s funny how just by giving him white eyes he looks otherworldly; he even stated at one point that this was one of the best movie making experiences of his career.

So is it a Christmas movie? Of course! Not only does it take place at this time of year but one of the first lines of the movie is “Merry Fuckin’ Christmas!” It doesn’t get more festive!

It’s fast paced, leading up to a genuinely explosive finale with plenty of conveniently placed oil barrels; this was before the days of CG so the action still holds up really well and there are some great stunts.

I like the buddy formula between Jack and Agent Smith (Brian Benben) who share some entertaining one-liners keeping the tone light and fun.

Overall, I Come in Peace is one of Dolph’s most entertaining movies and has arguably the best killer one-liner of all time; you know the one – “I come in peace!” “But you go in pieces… asshole!”