Worth A Look: 83.33%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 0%
1 review, 6 user ratings
by Brian McKay
The only thing more dreary to sit through than a bad movie is a bad movie about the making of bad movies (look up my review of URBAN LEGENDS: FINAL CUT for a prime example). On the other hand, the bad movie within a bad movie scenario can rise above the crop of truly awful cinematic crapola with some funny and clever moments (now see my review of CECIL B. DEMENTED). HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD has some of those moments going for it, though not quite as many as I would have liked. But then, I did watch it sober.Why do I always end up seeing films like this stone cold sober, then watching really great movies that I might actually want to appreciate and even remember when I'm high as a kite? (See my review of A Clockwork Orange . . . no, on second thought, don't).
"Dancin' Truckin' Swingin' Fuckin' - Everyone's Doin' It Now!"
Needless to say, Hollywood Boulevard is the kind of movie best seen high at a drive-in (obviously the target audience). However, it has its noteworthy points, the first of which is that it's director Joe Dante's freshman effort. Although he later went on to crank out mainstream powerhouse hits in the 80's like The Howling, Gremlins, and Innerspace, the presence of both tits and a cartoonish death scene within the first 60 seconds of this film is a sure tip-off that you're cruising in B-movie waters.
Candy Hope (Candice Rialson) is a perky, busty, and fresh-faced blonde who just got into Hollywood and is hungry to become a movie star. She falls in with a sleazy but generally good-hearted agent named Walter Paisley (Dick Miller) who wears a lot of cheesy bling bling and sends Candy on some lame-ass gigs (because that's all he can get). She ends up working on a film where one of the supporting actresses ended up dead in a mysterious skydiving accident. The first person Candy meets on the set is the writer, Patrick (Jeffrey Kramer), and immediately falls in love with him. (Isn't there an old joke in Hollywood about the actress who was so dumb she slept with the writer to get the part?) For their first date, they go on a picnic in the Hollywood hills, and for some unknown reason a band shows up in the background and starts playing some twangy, catchy little tune. This brings us to noteworthy point number two.
It took some digging before I figured out who this band was, as well as the name of the song. However, using my impeccable stoner's detective skills, the mystery has been solved. The Band: Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen. The song: Everybody's Doing It. Picture this, if you will. The Sax player looks like Wierd Al, the rest of the band look like mulletheaded rejects from Alabama and Blue Oyster Cult, the drummer's T-shirt, kit arrangement, and location change from scene to scene, and with a chorus like "Dancin' Truckin' Swingin' Fuckin' - everybody's doing it now!", how can this be anything but hilarious? Add to that some catchy riffs, a damn good slide guitar player, and a nice ZZ Top guitar tip on the final note, and you've got something that should be on VH1 Classics heavy rotation day and night. Find it, download it, hear it, love it! We had to go back and watch that part again, and my friend says he's never sending the disc back to Netflix because that music video is pure comedic gold. Damned if he isn't right.
Candy and her co-stars go to the Phillipines next to film an exploitative action flick called Machete Maidens, which consists of the girls braless in tight belly shirts firing off machine guns. These scenes constantly quick-cut to pilfered scenes of a bunch of Phillipino soldiers getting shot up. These scenes, like many others in the movie, are borrowed from various films made by schlockmeister Roger Corman - Death Race 2000 and several "Women in Prison" films, in particular. This is where we get to noteworthy point number three.
Tits. Lots and lots of tits. Candice really gives up the goods in a few scenes, along with her co-stars Rita George and Tara Strohmeier (who also finished off Kentucky Fried Movie with one of the best softcore sex scenes ever). Yes, these girls have jugs, and they ain't afraid to use 'em! Meanwhile, the film's lead actress Mary McQueen (Mary Woronov, who has the face and voice of a man but most definitely the body of a woman) gets catty with her co-stars and is constantly trying to steal scenes. Another actress dies mysteriously. Looks like someone's bumping off actresses - though nobody in this film will figure that out until a couple more have bitten the dust.
Candy goes to the "World Premiere" of Machete Maidens - which is the third feature at a second-rate Drive-in. Her manager and boyrfriend/writer go with her, they get drunk, a bunch of Drive-in shenanigans ensue (oh how I love Drive-in shenanigans, which makes this noteworthy point number four).
More actresses get bumped off in a cheesy manner. Candi becomes next on the list. The killer is revealed. Candy's boyfriend saves her. Candi goes on to be a big star. Blah Blah Blah. It's pretty much downhill at this point, although as usual there is plenty of unintentional laughter. All in all, it's a fairly average B-movie, though the previously mentioned high points certainly give it some kick. But as usual, the acting is bad. Painfully bad. So is the action - even the scenes that are lifted from slightly better B movies get old pretty damn quick, what with all the non-stop and out-of-context shooting and driving and shooting and more driving . . . yawn.
However, as the director of Machete Maidens comments at one point, "This isn't a movie about the human condition. It's a movie about tits and ass." Yup, pretty much sums it up.
Carnage and Carnality
-pointless opening scene of two very big tits (God Bless Tara Strohmeier, wherever she is).
-Skydiving mishap leaves Wyle E. Coyotesque indentation in the Earth.
-Sleazy producer selects female extras through a wet T-shirt contest, followed by a trip to the casting couch (which is in the casting van).
-Female leads run around in nipple-enhancing belly shirts while firing antiquated assault rifles. Quick cut to stock footage of many Phillipinos dying and village burning.
-Candice gets shirt ripped off while filming simulated rape scene, revealing a set of eye-popping gazongas.
-Pointless and graciously extended topless sunbathing scene with Candice, Tara, and Rita.
-Producer has menage a tois with Rita and Tara after harrowing encounter with rubber snake.
-Tara sets off a blood squib between her boobs as her character is shot, sadly bringing her astounding quota of utterly pointless and thoroughly enjoyable nudity in this film to an end.
-Candice and Rita hang out in knit bikinis by the pool. Boyfriends wear incredibly gay-looking fifties throwback and seventies tennis sweater outfits, respectively.
-Mary almost shows of her boobs several times, never quite gets there.
-Rita stabbed to death in cheesy Friday the Thirteenth fashion.
-killer crushed by falling HOLLYWOOD sign. Bloody hand sticks out, twitching defiantly.
-film ends moments later, no further breast shots
Poorly written, acted even worse, but cleverly directed by Dante who made good use of borrowed footage to stretch the miniscule (even by 1970's standards) budget of $65,000. The DVD has the added bonus of previews for several "Women in Prison" movies, all narrated by that deep-voiced 70's announcer guy who says hysterical things like "Their bodies were caged, but nothing could shackle their desires!" However, the DVD is worth owning alone for that "Swingin' Fuckin'" song. Goddamit, that was sheer genius.This movie may be utter crap in the grand scheme of cinematic history - but my idea of heaven would be a drive-in theater on an eternal summer night with a never-ending bong, a keg of cold-filtered cornucopia, and an endless procession of movies like this.
link directly to this review at https://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=5450&reviewer=258
originally posted: 01/25/03 22:12:17