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Film Flashback

Netflix Flashback: The silly brilliance of 'Starship Troopers'

With our bustling feature, Netflix Flashback, we are helping to remind you of all of the classic films still on the Netflix shelves. The streaming platform may have a ream of new titles coming to the fore, but it still has some legendary titles; this time, we’re looking at a picture that may not be to everybody’s tastes. We’re exploring another planet as well as a cult classic in Paul Verhoeven’s film, Starship Troopers.

The possibility of life beyond our own planet has been a fantasy writers and creatives across time have long pondered. A question rooted in pure curiosity, extra-terrestrial life has remained an endearing focus for centuries, with the discovery of such beings putting a brand new focus on our role as humans in the wider universe.

Science-fiction tales that concern themselves with alien life provide a fascinating reflection on the fears of the contemporary zeitgeist. For, despite such stories concerning themselves with often sinister visitors to earth, the very best extra-terrestrial stories tell the audience far more about humanity’s own anxieties than the threat of outside influence. When Starship Troopers arrived in 1997, it shaded the end of the 20th century with a bright vision of the future.

The film is a sharp sci-fi satire on American foreign policy, the 1997 movie follows humans who are living in a fascist, militaristic future where they have waged war with giant alien insects who threaten to take over their way of life. However, after only the briefest encounters with these aliens, it soon becomes clear who are the devastating invaders and who the victims are.

Amid the blue bloodshed and Fazer-blasting fun exists a teen drama that unfolds like an episode of Beverly Hills 90210. It’s a unique prospect that has grabbed the attention of countless filmmakers, including Takashi Miike, director of Battle Royale, who once named it his favourite film of all time. Considering the source, that is some praise indeed.

Speaking to The UpComing about his love for the films of Paul Verhoeven, as well as his passion for similar filmmakers, Miike states, “I really love Verhoeven, Lynch and David Cronenberg. I appreciate their genius – although genius is such an easy word to use – but they have amazing ability and energy to create something original and share that with the world. I am not comparable to these people, so I try not to envy or imitate them and instead do what I do and enjoy it”.

The energy of Starship Troopers can be felt from the very beginning of the picture, and it makes for an enjoyable watch, any time or day.

Catch Starship Troopers on Netflix now.