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Full Eclipse (1993)

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"I have this animal magnetism."
Casey Spencer

Full Eclipse is a made-for-TV movie that first aired in 1993 on HBO. Directed by Anthony Hickox, Full Eclipse starred Mario van Peebles as a Los Angeles detective named Max Dire who finds himself involved in a secret police task force run by werewolves. Under the guidance of "Pack" leader Adam Garou, Max Dire descends into a world of supernatural vigilante justice as he tries to come to terms with being infected by Garou's special werewolf serum.

Plot Edit

The Streets of L.A. Edit

Max Dire (Full Eclipse) 001

Detective Max Dire

Max Dire and Jim Sheldon are detectives for the Los Angeles Police Department. While driving in their cruiser, Jim tells Max that he proposed to his fiancée, Helen. He further mentions how he is thinking of retiring from the force. Suddenly, a call comes in over the radio and Dire and Sheldon are ordered to respond to a hostage situation at Club O.

Arriving at the scene, the two detectives determine that the only way to access the building is through the roof. They unseal the ventilation pipes and climb down through the air ducts. The criminals inside however, hear them coming and begin shooting at the air ducts. Detective Sheldon takes several shots to the chest and abdomen at which point, Detective Dire leaps down and begins shooting wildly in a blind rage. When the smoke clears, all of the hostage takers are dead.

Detective Sheldon however, does not emerge from the situation as well as Dire. He is now in a coma. Dire has great difficulty accepting his partner’s critical condition and the strain of the job begins to have an effect on his marriage. Max's wife, Anna and he, seek counseling.

In the hospital, somebody sneaks into Jim's room and injects him with a mysterious yellow liquid. Jim suddenly comes out of his coma without so much as even a scratch on his person. He returns to work as if nothing ever happened.

A few days later, Max and Jim are outside a donut shop when Detective Sheldon notices a car filled with gang bangers aiming automatic weapons out the window. Jim is the first to respond and dives after the motorists. Max follows suit and withdraws twin sidearms, diving forward while shooting. The car speeds off through the traffic, but Jim begins chasing it on foot. His reflexes and stamina are twice what they once were and he begins bounding overtop of car hoods in pursuit of the suspects. Max cannot believe his eyes.

One of the thugs exits the car and hijacks a motorcycle. Sheldon jumps onto his back and forces the cycle into a closed off alley. He shouts the Miranda rights to the scared motorist then crashes the bike into a brick wall, killing the driver. Max turns the corner and sees Jim walking out of the flames without a scratch.

The following day, Max is awarded a Medal of Valor for his participation in the Club O incident, but this does little to ease his tense state of mind. He gives the medal away to an older officer. Returning home, he discovers that Anna has decided to spend a week at her mother's in Houston. His marriage continues to crumble.

Adam and the "Pack" Edit

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Adam Garou

He then receives a notice to appear in the office of Detective Adam Garou. Max goes there and learns that Garou is in charge of Officer Crisis Counseling. Max is bothered by how much Garou knows of his personal life. Adam asks Max to meet him for a special counseling session at his place with several other officers.

That evening, Max goes to a bar called the Blue Night where he plays pool with several other cops. Jim Sheldon walks in and solemnly tells Max that he is retiring and that he has broken up with Helen. Confused, Max tries to press him for more information, but Jim takes out his service revolver and places it in his mouth. Max tries to stop him, but he is too late. Jim shoots himself.

Max finally decides to go to Adam Garou's council session. He arrives at Adam's expansive penthouse apartment where he meets the other guests, all of whom are Los Angeles cops; Casey Spencer, Doug Crane, Ramón Pérez and a woman named Liza. Adam tells Max how each of them have had their lives turned upside down by the criminal element running rampant through the streets of L.A. and how they have each chosen to join with him as part of his "Pack". Unofficially connected to the police department, this Pack shares a deep dedication towards cleaning the streets of crime – no matter what the cost. Max is incredulous and believes that Adam's followers are trying to be some brand of vigilante super-cops.

While Max is taking it all in, Doug Crane takes Adam aside for a private conversation on the balcony. He confesses that he was the one who spiked Detective Sheldon's IV with their secret formula. He figured that since Sheldon was as good as dead anyway, he wanted to see what would happen.

After the meeting, Adam returns to Max and tells him that he wants him to become part of the Pack. Max still isn't sold on the idea and dislikes the idea of Adam's brand of unlawful justice. Adam invites Max to come along to see how they work.

The group goes to the bank of a river across from the dockside enterprises of a crime lord named Teague. All of the Pack members are dressed in black bodysuits and inject themselves with a strange serum. When Max inquires about the serum, Casey tells him that it akin to a super-vitamin. Leaving Max behind, the Pack then swims across the river to the docks. Max watches them with a pair of night vision goggles and is horrified as he sees the Pack brutally tear into Teague's drug runners. They thrash at them with claws grown from their knuckles and the sound of a beastly growl can be heard coming over the river.

Further Research Edit

The following day, Max attends Ramón Pérez's wedding. During the ceremony Ramón suddenly decides that he wants to break it off. He no longer wishes to be married. He angrily storms off as the attendees stare in shock. Max cannot help but think that Ramón's sudden change in attitude is a direct result of his association with Adam Garou. He decides that he needs to learn more about what Adam and his Pack really are.

He visits Jim Sheldon's fiancee, Helen and inspects Jim's workshop. He finds gun-smithing equipment and deduces that Jim melted down his lucky 1972 silver dollar and forged it into a silver bullet.

He then goes to the morgue and convinces the attendee (a man affectionately known as "Bobmeister") to let him inspect Jim's body. Bobmeister is reluctant to break the chain of evidence, but Max insists. He pulls the slug out of Jim's head, confirming Max’s suspicions. Jim killed himself with a silver bullet. He is now determined to find out more about Adam and his wonder-drug. He believes Adam might be a werewolf.

Max goes to Adam's penthouse, but the only one present is Casey Spencer. Casey defends the Pack's ideals and tells Max that he will change his mind once he tries the serum. Max refuses. Casey then seduces him and the two make love on the couch in Adam's living room. Afterward, she again offers Max the drug, but he politely declines. As Max gets up to leave, Casey produces a pistol and shoots him in the chest. Max falls to the floor bleeding and Casey quickly injects him with the serum. The formula courses through Max's system, instantly healing his injury. His adrenalin level spikes and even though he is angry at Casey, he cannot deny the allure that Adam's drug brings to him.

Running with the Pack Edit

Feeling the rush of adrenalin surging through their bodies, Case and Max decide to strike out on their own mission. They track down one of Teague's "ice-houses" and tear down the steel warehouse door. Max grows claws and fangs and the two burst into the crime scene, tearing through Teague’s men. The drug runners unload their weapons upon the two pseudo-werewolves, but the flurry of bullets doesn’t even slow them down. They eviscerate everyone in the room.

Later, Casey returns to Adam's penthouse. With his enhanced senses, Adam knows that Casey had sex with Max (in addition to shooting him). He can forgive her shooting Max, as it was the only way to insure his loyalty, but he cannot forgive sleeping with him. Adam believes that he is the only one who should enjoy Casey's affections. To demonstrate his disapproval, he shape-shifts into a partial werewolf form and forces himself upon her. Casey sinks to the floor crying and begging forgiveness.

Meanwhile, members of the police department decide to hold a surprise celebration honoring Max Dire’s 30th birthday. The party is held at their favorite cop bar, but Max is not exactly feeling like his usual self right now. All of his friends clap him on the back and shove gifts into his hand, but Max feels tired and disoriented. He is physically wiped out after the effects of the drug wear off. One of the cops returns his silver medal to him, but when Max touches it, his hand begins to burn. He pushes his way through the crowd into the restroom. Moments later, his wife Anna, having returned from Houston, wants to make restitution with her estranged husband. A feral drive takes Max over and he violently embraces her. Anna doesn’t like this sudden change in Max's demeanor and pushes him away.

When he goes back out into the bar, he finds Adam and the Pack waiting for him. Adam is now confident that Max will become one of their members and wants to bring him along on a mission. Max leaves the bar with them and dons a pair of their commando fatigues. As they enter their van, the vehicle suddenly explodes. Mister Teague's cronies watch from nearby as all six Pack members walk out of the explosion. They kill the thugs, load them into a police helicopter then dump their bodies through the skylight of Teague's home.

The Truth about Adam Garou Edit

Max returns to the police station. He finds that the precinct is holding a man named Tom Davies, who is screaming about Adam Garou, in one of their cells. Max visits him the man who appears to be going through severe withdrawal symptoms. His face barely even looks human anymore. Davies tells Max that he used to be a detective for Miami P.D. and that he was also a member of Adam's Pack. He warns Max that Adam has established groups like this before in cities all across the country. Each time however, following the effects of a full lunar eclipse, Adam slaughters his own people, then goes on to another city to set up a fresh group.

As they speak, Adam Garou walks into the cell block and shoots Tom Davies. Max stands still in shock. The police chief rushes in after hearing the shot and asks Garou what had happened. Adam says that Davies attacked Officer Dire and that he had to shoot him. Max says nothing to counter Garou’s claim.

Max takes Davies' words to heart and decides to research Adam Garou at length. He discovers that he is many times older than his apparent age would suggest, with records of his existence dating as far back as 1910. He finds newspaper reels intimating Adam's involvement in the gangland slayings of Al Capone's men. He also finds a photograph of Garou from that era where he is using the alias of Joseph O'Conner. He also finds clippings to support the Miami detective’s claims of Garou's work in other cities.

Max goes to Adam's penthouse to confront him. He warns the other Pack members that Adam intends on killing them. Adam explains that his super-cop werewolf formula is derived from his own blood and brain matter and that he can render his followers virtually immortal. Doug Crane, who has been leery of Adam's motives for some time, tries to defect, but Adam partially transforms and bites him through his throat, killing him. Casey Spencer decides that she would rather be with Max than with Adam and they both leap out the window to escape Adam's fury. They land on the street below, but Casey is greatly injured. She tells Max that she has been trying to wean herself off Adam's drug and she doesn’t have enough left to heal them both. She gives her share to Max to heal his injuries from the fall.

Max vs. the Werewolf Edit

Adam Garou (Full Eclipse) 002

Adam Garou in werewolf form

By this point, Adam and the other two members of the Pack go to police headquarters. Adam knows that this evening is the night of the lunar eclipse and he wants to take advantage of this opportunity to finish Teague off once and for all. He commanders a police helicopter, but when the police chief tries to stop him, he kills him. Max gets to the roof of police headquarters and discovers the bodies left in Adam’s wake just as he is leaving. He seeks out Bobmeister and asks him for volumes of silver nitrate.

Max tracks Adam down to the docks where the Pack is slashing their way through the rest of Teague's men. Adam has the vice lord in his clutches when Max arrives. He points his gun at him and orders Adam to release Teague. Garou does so and walks towards Max, goading him into firing his gun. Max fires a silver bullet into Adam's chest and he falls to the ground. Believing that he had killed him, Max turns to leave. However, Adam rises from the ground, citing that he is invincible, even to silver, on the night of a full lunar eclipse.

Adam then shape-shift into his full werewolf form. With nothing to restrict him, he arbitrarily kills his Pack-mate, Liza, then lunges after Max.

Max tries to escape by climbing atop a cargo crate suspended from a crane. The werewolf leaps on top of him and the two begin fighting. Garou repeatedly slashes away at him until Max stabs him in the neck with a needle filled with silver nitrate. By this point, the lunar eclipse is now passing, and Adam is vulnerable to silver again. Forced to revert to his human form, Adam slumps down onto the ground. Exhausted, Max falls down next to him. Adam pleads with Max to not let his work died with him. He asks him to lie down in the pool of his blood and absorb his powers so that he can continue the crusade against injustice. The silver nitrate in his bloodstream runs its course and Adam Garou dies.

Three Years Later Edit

Max Dire and his wife are back together and living in Denver, Colorado. Max still works as a police detective and their marriage appears to be improving. Max returns home from work where he finds Anna dicing up vegetables for dinner. She slices her thumb on a knife and Max kisses her wound. As he walks into his study, Anna looks down and watches how quickly her husband’s saliva heals the cut.

Max sits at his computer to do some work. He pulls up a screen that shows a countdown meter. There are only nine days left until the next lunar eclipse. Max smiles. Adam Garou's legacy lives on.

Cast Edit

Notes & Trivia Edit

  • Full Eclipse has been made available on both VHS and DVD.
  • Released as both rated R and unrated for violence, profanity and brief nudity.
  • "Garou" is middle-French for wolf. As such, Adam Garou's placard on his office door translates as, "A Wolf". Garou is also the common term used to refer to a werewolf in White Wolf game studio’s role-playing module, Werewolf: The Apocalypse.
  • Max Dire jokingly refers to the Pack as a group of "bionic X-Men". The X-Men are a team of mutant super-heroes featured in comic books published by Marvel Comics. One of their members, Wolverine, has the ability to project claws from his forearms. This is not too dissimilar to the Max and Casey's ability to generate claws from their knuckles.

External Links Edit

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