RIP Albert Pyun

Albert Pyun, director of no budget action b-movies, has died yesterday after a career lasting four decades and making some incredible films, movies full of inventiveness and energy.

In an interview on the Nemesis BluRay, he was asked what he thinks his legacy will be in film history. He answered that he hopes to be remembered for movies where you would never see what you expected to see. “I try to present everything through different eyes each time, and it was never about a job to me, and so hopefully that comes through.”

Look I don’t know how to write these things, just go watch Nemesis. Or Radioactive Dreams, a high-def version was never released as far as anyone can tell, but there’s an SD version on Youtube, and it has cannibals and disco-mutants and a New Wave nightclub called Newclear Wave.

The Red Letter Media guys covered a couple of his movies in a recent video. Apparently his wife had tweeted that he was in poor health and could use some encouragement from his fans. Sorry to hear he’s gone.

Albert Pyun’s filmography is absolutely crazy (he made a belated sequel to Walter Hill’s Streets of Fire!?) but I guess he was probably best known as the director of the inept and unfinished Captain America film, which is a shame because at his best he executed even the most implausible premises with considerable verve.

I love the flashy carnage in Nemesis, one of the rare instances where Pyun had a decent budget to work with, and I was really charmed by Dollman (1991) with its inventive camera blocking and uber-cheap-but-inspired analogue special effects. When he was doing reshoots for Cyborg, he shot an entire second film Deceit during an extended weekend, and although it’s no Detour (1945) it’s hard not to love a guy that ambitious.

Despite being partial to dark and moody 1980s and early 1990s aesthetics, I probably like his highly stylized Mean Guns best of all. RIP to a genuine filmmaker and worker.

The RLM Video linked above goes into how talented and underappreciated he was. Pity he never really got a decent budget or script to work with.