Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Foreign Flicks: Superbug- Secret Agent

A German rip-off comedy that's the sequel to a film that I can't get- wow.  That's all you really need to know to understand this movie.  Mind you, it is a lot!  Here's a more interesting summary: The Love Bug was a pretty big hit worldwide.  As such, a guy decided to rip it off for his own movie.  Since they kept making sequels in America, so did he.  There are either five or six of these movies out there, but only two of them are available on Netflix.  Naturally, it's the second and third films!  The plot is simple: our hero is a secret agent who has a computer-controlled car named Dodo (or Dudu in the German credits).  To give you an idea of how obscure the film is, the official DVD release is a VHS-rip with English dubbing (with no options of a German language track).  Will this film be as good as the Disney classic?  Well, the odds are not in its favor.  To see what happens, read on...
After introducing our hero in his floating boat, the film forgets about him for nearly fifteen minutes!  In his place, a plot involving a newly-released man hiding one half of some engraving plates.  A rival seeks it, leading to chaos on the beach.
Our hero shows up to help out, using Dodo's numerous moving parts.  How do these things work?  There's no explanation, but this is a comedy.  Even so, most of his 'joke weapons' would kill these people!
I should also mention that Dodo communicates with our hero via some sort of Wi-Fi device on his belt.  Mind you, the film was made in 1972!  Oh yeah, in spite of this advanced technology, the computer speaks via note cards.
Our hero works for General Services, an all-purpose spy agency that will do anything to help people...provided it's not illegal or something they disapprove of.  Their role in the plate fiasco is key.
After wasting lots of time with 'objects fly around on wires' gags, the movie finally wraps up with a battle on the beach.  Cue more car action!
In addition to that, our hero and the criminal- who is actually an undercover cop, assuming that you care- get involved too.  I'm having Super Fuzz flashbacks!
After wrapping up the plot, our heroes attempt to abandon all their responsibility.  Yea.  Unfortunately for them, the belt was left on the beach, allowing the women to call the car back...from at least 100 feet away!  The End. 
What's German for 'lame?'  The plot of this movie is alright, although the pacing is what kills it.  The plot is simple enough, but it rarely gets going or stays going.  We see the criminal look for our hero...and then just leave, before getting caught.  Our hero eventually shows up...but that's followed by a five-minute scene of wacky prop comedy.  Can you pay attention for more than five minutes?!?  This script feels like it was written by six people, only to be glued back together by a confused child!  The truth is, however, that the lead actor is also the Writer and Director.  That does explain his long absence following the opening, I suppose.  I would say, however, if you can't do both jobs at the same time, why do both jobs?  The movie has some funny moments, but a lot of the repartee is probably lost in the Dubbing.  If you like goofy comedies and want to see a rare one, this is one to check out.  If you don't, it's pretty one-note and strange.  I'll leave you with a great example of lazily re-using props...
 * How does it end up here? *
Up next, Japan brings the wacky in this homage to Kaiju.  Is the comedy broader than the circumference of the Earth though?  Stay tuned... 


  1. Thanks. even though its a lame movie, It really brings back a warm childhood memories ;-)

  2. It's actually a vast improvement over the first 'DuDu' film (not that that says a lot!); the gags/stunts involving the car are much better executed, although it's still pretty patchy.
    The English dub is peculiar though - there's definitely some expletives which have been chopped out ('I twisted her ****ing neck off just to get the message out of her') - weird, as it's clearly a kid's film.

  3. Well, there are like six more of these. If they all ended up here in the United States, I'll compare them for posterity. I've done stupider things...