Ewan Gleadow

Movie Review: Trump vs. The Illuminati

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Copyright: Ruthless Studios

Sometimes when scraping the bottom of the barrel for content, we scrape right through the foundation and into the soggy nonsense below. Trump vs. The Illuminati, then, is what was coughed up onto my schedule. Perhaps I should be blessed that this is the content I sit and watch, it’s a sign that 2020 is in its final stages. The final, stuttered chaos of a repugnant year ends not with a bang, but an isolated clone of Donald Trump, flailing around Mars with an animosity for aliens and only Major Tom to speak to. I suppose that’s a rather fitting end to the misery, with such a low brow film ending up on Amazon Prime of all places. 

Naming your leading antagonist after famed occultist Aleister Crowley is a rather subtle reference for the six people that’ll view this film. Trump vs. The Illuminati is very obviously a film made with no quality in mind. BC Fourteen strikes me as a man just wanting to cash in on that SyFy magic Sharknado sparked. Understanding Sharknado, though, the intention is poor quality, there is no effort there because it’s not needed. Trump vs. The Illuminati does try to incorporate actual writing and topical, coronavirus jokes. It’s awful, no surprise there. David Bowie references, toilet paper jokes, and quotations from the real-world Trump adapted into some drawn-out, bland jokes that have been flogged to death by social media three years ago.  

The performances are, well, I’m sure you can imagine those for yourselves. Dreadful impressions of a cloned Donald Trump and another voice filtered through a cheap synthesizer for an alien effect. We’re given five minutes of synopsis readouts from both protagonist and antagonist, and it’s not like they give differing viewpoints. Filmmaking like this is now a rather common facet of this coronavirus-riddled world. Cheap projects that are put together as fast as possible. Horrid choreography, direction that shakes and autofocuses on whatever happens to be moving on the screen, cut with no real intention or idea of where it wants to take its characters. I’m not surprised, but there’s something fascinatingly dense about how low the effort is.  

These films serve their purpose. A credible palette cleanser on a similar level to Elvis from Outer Space or Titanic II. So completely devoid of quality, made with horrible CGI and some stock clips they found on the hard drive they edited the film on. I’m not sure why these low brow films always share the same few bits of B-Roll, but I can’t say it doesn’t fascinate me greatly. Not just as a project people have spent time working on, but for the audiences out there that will get joy out of this. Those few brave souls will march into the unknown far more than I could ever hold the courage for. I just hope they’re ready to be met by a Chinese clone of Donald Trump fighting 50s aliens on Mars.