1965 Russ Meyer movie

Rating: 12/20

Plot: A trio of motorpsychos on a raping and killing adventure meet their match in a veterinarian.

I was going to criticize the actor who played Haji's husband, a wacky Cajun, in this and just noticed that it was Coleman Francis, the director of The Beast of Yucca Flats, one of the worst movies ever made. Haji, also in the superior Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, isn't a great actress. In fact, she's abrasively bad. I'm not even sure she's intelligible, but she's got the right physique for a Russ Meyer's flick which is all that really matters.

See? You have to appreciate Meyer for the lack of subtlety, but there's a definite creepy vibe here. I loved a scene where the motorcycle punks--who ride, by the way, the least tough bikes ever--force a victim to dance. But at the same time, you're a little uneasy as you watch Meyer bringing these weird fantasies to life on your television screen. Later, there's an interaction between a doctor and a cop:

"Looks like they did a number on her."
"Nothing happened to her that a woman ain't built for."

What the hell? I suppose feminists wouldn't swallow a line like that very easily. Speaking of swallowing, this has a great scene where the vet has been bitten by a snake and wants Haji to suck out the poison, the wild cries of "Suck it! Suck it!" building to a nifty double-spit transition that shows what kind of genius Russ Meyer probably was.

This came out the same year as Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! but lacks the flavor that makes that one an iconic slice of trashy art. It's worth watching, especially for fans of Meyer, but it's disappointing compared to his, um, best work.

You do have to love a guy who isn't afraid to title his movie with a pun like that. Brazen!


Anonymous said...

i gave it a 15. i liked it almost as well as FPKKK. This was action straight through whereas faster pussycat has some unfortunate dialogue. The vets wife was one of the most beautiful woman i have ever seen. loved the shots of them riding the wimpy "motorcycles". other shots were really well framed and i could imagine a still shot of dozens of frames being hung up in museums. there was some nice commentary(word of the day) about PTSD as the leader of the gang(the one who pushed everything too far) was a soldier returning to society. you are correct the cops comments to the vet were really shocking. great 80 minute toyota commercial. Up is a terrible terrible movie by the way.

Shane said...

I thought I'd seen Up! (you forgot its exclamation point, maybe that's why you didn't like it), but it's not on the blog. And I didn't see any Russ Meyer movie pre-blog.

I don't know about that PTSD commentary. That seems like such an afterthought, like everybody said, "Hey, let's try to figure out some reason why these guys are so nasty" and then just threw it in. What's the commentary exactly?

Meyers did have a great eye, didn't he? There are shots where it seems like he's Fellini or somebody instead of a B-movie director. I think that's part of what makes him so fascinating.