Friday, June 1, 2012

"The Party Animal"(1984)d/David Beaird

Is it fucking June again already?Tonight's movie first turned up for me as a VHS new release on the shelves at D's Video back in '85, the choice of the evening for one of the more iniquitous neighborhood guys who'll remain nameless here, for reasons well known to all in attendance that summer afternoon, all who unanimously thumbs downed the inauspicious sex comedy amidst cries of "biased opinion" from the film's chooser-cum-champion, and as far as I had thought for twenty years afterwards, probably the only one in existence.I recently stumbled across the MGM dvd on a three dollar shelf at Big Lots(along with the Dimension Mother of Tears(2006) disc that had been eluding me for a minute, and a couple of others, really a Howard Carter/King Tut buried-in-his-jammies kind of excavation, reminiscent of my glorious far reaching VHS hunts of yesteryear) and knew instantly that too many years had passed since I last screened it, and my evaluation at the time was borderline unfair due to aforementioned circumstances.One thing you'll learn about Libras, we demand a balance of justice in everything we get our mitts around, or it'll pick at us like a pair of woolen unter-knicks until the state has exhaustively been achieved.Once ample haze had been vigorously puffed up, and the film had run it's brisk seventy-seven minutes, I found my recent suspicions about it to have been well-founded, indeed, with several snicker-worthy segments, a killer alt. soundtrack with mint Buzzcocks, Chelsea, and R.E.M. tracks and a memorable live performance by righteous L.A. mod outfit of the day, The Untouchables, and I haven't even mentioned all the eighties-licious headband babes and their respective bra-buddies that are broken out along the way, all in the name of lunkheadedly libidinous teen larfs.Onward.
Pondo(Matt Causey) wants to park his yap in some three-finger gap.
The ridiculously-named Pondo Sinatra(Matt Causey) is a twenty-six year old backwards Confederate Flag-wearing bumpkin who's arrived at college in the back of a turnip truck and whose abrasive Southern drawl and neanderthal approach to women seemingly leaves him jinxed from ever scoring a slice of hair pie, to this dismay of his collegiate chum with equally ridiculous name, Studly(Tim Carhart), a guy who never has any problem nailing any number of compliant feather-coiffed campus-dwelling quims, who give angry, documentary-style testimonials to the camera concerning Pondo's lovemaking ineptitudes.We see him get head-scissored between the thighs of an unwilling fully clothed cunnilingus recipient on a lover's lane car date and sends a whorehouse full of hookers off screaming in terror.Studly sends his friend to Elbow(Jerry Jones), his own personal sifu in the ways of women, a jive-talking black cat who urges Pondo to be a "houuuuun dawg" that's "gonna eat dat pussay!", but he only manages to crash a black party decked out in seventies pimp gear, slinging ethno-jive and offending everyone until a gaggle of statuesque homeboys converge on him and set his honky ass straight.A wrongful makeover leaves Pondo a hunchbacked 'n chained up mohawk punk with spikes through his cheeks that's chased by a lynch mob through town before he cries out, familiarly, in agony:" animal!" "Bullshit! That's an animal!", one of the posse replies.
"...Hounnn dawg gon' eat dat pussay!"
Pondo, desperate to see his dreams of being cool enough to sing the title track in a pair of Wayfarer sunglasses on stage become reality, crashes a party with comically oversized amounts of illicit drugs, rolling himself a Led Zeppelin of a jibber, eating sloppy mounds of reefer with fistfuls of prescription drugs and a whole sheet of acid before dumping a sack of cocaine on the table, cutting elephantine lines with a meat cleaver and burying his face in the mess before being led out by the disbelieving police.Several half-baked attempts at developing a new aphrodisiac leave the local females bald and disfigured.Faced with expulsion from college, Pondo stumbles upon the formula for irresistibility in some sludge he's dumping out in the lab workshop, transforming himself into the titular 'party animal' whose mere presence sends any nearby woman into a sexual frenzy, but soon finds out being desirable to the opposite sex can be a frustrating, exhausting predicament, as well, when several overweight women at the laudromat are suddenly struck horny, sending the hayseed to a premature grave.Studs notices a rabbit in the backyard that bears the same stars -n- bars patch in his back fur as his deceased friend used to wear, and calls out to the animal, knowing that his goofy pal has managed to get reincarnated in the perfect guise...
Hey Untouchables, how many mods does it take to screw in a lightbulb*?
Causey would also turn up in the Beaird vehicle, My Chauffeur(1986), while the director would continue to helm successful comedies and theatrical productions after debuting with this minor cult hit.Carhart would land roles in things like Witness, Desperately Seeking Susan(both 1985), and even Pink Cadillac(1989).Jerry Jones had previously appeared in several Rudy Ray Moore flicks, like Disco Godfather(1979), The Human Tornado(1976), and '75's Dolemite.This is probably the most even-handed performance I've ever seen him give.Robin Harlan would appear in Hollywood Vice Squad(as 'Hooker #4', of course) the following year, before moving on to a successful career behind the scenes as a foley artist on over two hundred movies.Despite it's occasionally strained approach in delivering the comedic goods, Animal turned out to be a pretty nostalgic trip back to the outset of the eighties for this guy, and mostly unworthy of all the negativity I'd been chucking in it's direction for the past two decades.Two big ones on the scale.Check it out for yourselves, if you feel compelled to do so.
Xenophobia Rabbit sez, "Git offa mah lan', g'wan git!!"

*Fourteen, by my estimates.One to change the lightbulb, one to book the Northern Soul n' Rocksteady bands for the scooter rally afterwards, and twelve to run down that dirty grease merchant rocker and kick 'is fahkin' 'ead in, roit?!!

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