Sunday, September 9, 2012

i SPY EUROSPY: Agent 3S3 Massacre in the Sun

Agent 3S3: Massacre in the Sun
Director: Sergio Sollima
Year 1966
Agent 3S3: Massacre in the Sun, AKA Hunter From the Unknown, is an average yet obscure Eurospy entry that is kept interesting by its varied and diverse cast of actors and its tendency to stage some entertaining action sequences with engagingly strange situations. Carried by the capable actions of its star George Ardisson, the film makes for a fun but unusual viewing experience. With its beautiful locations, intriguing gadgets, and stunning female cast, Massacre in the Sun may not be the best of the genre, but it’s still a thrilling entry that will put a smile on your face.
The film follows Agent 3S3 as he is assigned to travel to the city of San Felipe, a small Caribbean island, in order to search for a missing fellow spy, Agent 3S4. Agent 3S4’s recent disappearance has something to do with a mad scientist who is experimenting with some form of lethal gas, under the watchful eye of a dictator and a nefarious organization. Hot on the heels of 3S3 is a slew of secret agents all representing their countries and their nation’s best interests, and each one of them has a plethora of tricks and disguises up their sleeve in order to complete their individual missions. Like a powder keg ready to burst, the island of San Felipe is about to erupt as all of these warring factions prepare to clash in a cacophony of explosions and gunfire. Who will be left standing! Who cares?!?! This shit is FUN!

George Ardisson takes on the role of Agent 3S3, otherwise known as Walter Ross, a highly capable spy who often finds himself in hot water. Ardisson shines in the role and although he isn’t as debonair as some of his more notable Eurospy agent peers, he always puts on a splendid show and manages to entertain to no end. In Massacre in the Sun, George has ample opportunities to showcase his athletic abilities as well as that sly and dry banter that he’s known for, resulting in a performance that truly ups the fun factor of the picture to respectable levels. With this being my second foray into the spy world of George Ardisson, with my first being Countdown to Doomsday, I can safely say that I’m looking forward to hunting down his other two efforts Passport to Hell and Operation Counterspy.
Along for the ride are a handful of wacky characters that help fill out the weird espionage-filled world of Massacre in the Sun. Frank Wolff plays the role of Ivan Tereczkov, a Russian agent who clashes with Ardisson’s Agent Ross a number of times over the course of the film. Wolff does a great job with the role, often injecting a great deal of mischievous nature into his character which gives way to all sorts of trouble for 3S3 when he begins to play mind games with our clueless hero. I've always enjoyed Frank's screen presence and he's a favorite of mine in the Giallo film Death Walks on High Heels. Another arduous miscreant that manages to be a thorn in the side of Agent Ross is the villainous Signora Barrientos, played by the fiery Luz Marquez, who can’t help but fall for the charismatic spy even though he threatens to topple her organization and ruin her plans. Luz is both sexy and fierce in this film and her inclusion is a definite plus in my book. Last but definitely not the least of 3S3’s antagonists is the masochistic Radek, played by Michel Lemoine. With a hot temper and penchant for violence, Radek makes for one perfectly diabolical villain for Ross to go toe to toe with and Lemoine is devilishly good in the role.

Aside from the multitude of bad guys in the story, Agent 3S3 also finds a few friendly faces amidst the mayhem, the most beautiful of them being the stunning Greek actress Evi Marandi, who takes on the role of UK agent Melissa. Looking absolutely breathtaking as the femme fatale, Evi definitely increases the amount of intrigue in the film whenever she appears on screen, and it also doesn’t hurt that her character takes on an interesting duel role within the story. Another standout ally of Agent 3S3 is the unlikely General Siqueiros, played by the bombastic Fernando Sancho. His character is rather unusual, because at first we are introduced to him as being the main villain of the piece but after some deliberation we come to find that he is weary of the organization that is behind the experimentation of lethal gas and is looking to jump sides for the time being. This character turn is not the only attention-grabbing thing about the General, because in entertaining Bond-villain style, Siqueiros has a secret hideaway filled with beautiful women who inhabit a multi-themed palace full of physical and visual delights. Luz lives it up as the diabolical dictator with a sudden change of heart, and his verbose performance must be seen to be believed.
With a robust cast such as this, you would imagine that a great deal of crazy antics would cultivate from the mixture of such zany performers, and you’d be right. Within the runtime of this film we see Agent 3S3 electrocuted in a swimming pool, perform one hell of a spanking on a sexy and naughty villainous, take on a dojo filled with stick-wielding fighters, gun down an entire army while sporting some nifty night vision goggles, and pretty much save the day whenever the time comes for it. Now don’t get me wrong, while all of these things are fantastic and totally align with the outlandish nature of Eurospy films, there are a few glaring hiccups in the formula. For instance, you won’t really know what’s going on for the majority of the film. While some might see this as a huge hindrance to the validity of the movie, the inclusion of all of these wacky moments and characters allow me to overlook the vagueness of the plot and just sit back and bask in the absurdity of it all. Plus, George Ardisson is just so enjoyable as Agent 3S3 that you can forgive the film’s missteps and just watch the man do his thing. It may not be logically sound, but this Eurospy is a hell of a good time.

Agent 3S3: Massacre in the Sun is an obscure gem of the genre, which may not win any awards for being the most concise and coherent spy yarn, it still manages to pull out the goods in its quest to entertain and thrill. George Ardisson brings an air of respect to the film and his portrayal as the titular agent is eye-catching and especially thorough. The same can be said for Evi Marandi as the sexy undercover agent, who often steals each scene she’s in with her alluring beauty.
On top of that, the performances across the board by the rest of the cast bring about an air of strangeness that just seems to permeate the narrative in the most fascinating of ways. From the many character twists that crop up within the film’s runtime, to the abundance of action moments, to the over the top nature of everyone on board, the film has a habit of grabbing your attention and introducing you to the next madcap set of sequences before literally pulling the rug out from under you in the most unsuspecting of ways. With a narrative flow that just doesn’t quite conform to a logical structure and a cast of characters that more than make up for that lax of presentation, Agent 3S3: Massacre in the Sun is truly a unique beast. Even with its shortcomings, the film is an entertaining ride that I’m looking forward to tackling again when I need that overwhelming fix of the absurd. This movie is…..

First one to spit on a pedestrian's head gets a free lunch on the loser.

Why don't you get up and I'll show you just how well I handle a stick.

Looks like George and his invisible date are having a blast.

Give me that mustache or I'll stick ya!


Good.... Bad.... I'm the hombre with the gun.

I know you're stupidly looking at the back of my head again Carl!

Looks like George likes the hands on approach to acting. You little pervert!

Shit! Weeeeeeeee!

How many times do I have to tell you. Stop stepping in dog shit!

Look at my mustache when I'm talking to you bro.

Evi's got something up her sexy sleeve.

So what do you think of my oversized gun?

This chicks got the POWER!

Please stop fiddling with that you old bat!

What the hell is going on?!?!?!

Scuba Steve finally snaps!

We're about to do it, so could you please turn the channel?

See ya later assholes!


  1. Where did you get such a great print?

  2. Over at the Wild Eye Eurospy Forum. They've got tons of great quality flicks!