Wednesday, May 3, 2017

'90s Trash: Barb Wire

Well, it is an Andy Sidaris Film in spirit.  This is Barb Wire, the infamous 1996 Film that was made to make Pamela Anderson Lee into a Star.  She was just in a Russian Comedy (as herself), so you be the judge of how well that worked.  The Film comes to us from David Hogan, a man who's work you would know if you are about my age and watched VH1.  Like Russell Mulcahy, he started out doing Music Videos.  He made such Videos as 'Leaving Las Vegas' (for Sheryl Crow) and 'What Would You Say?' (for The Dave Matthews Band).  He was also a 2nd Unit Director for Batman Forever, which apparently was all he needed to do to qualify to Direct a Comic Book Film the next Year.  As a bonus, its Writer apparently worked on The Handmaid's Tale.  Surprisingly-relevant!  Another one of them (there are FOUR Writers here) worked on such Films as Hard Target, Red Planet and Virus.  This Film tells the Story of a buxom blonde woman stuck between the Resistance and a Nazi-style Government.  It is Casablanca.  This was necessary?  If you've stuck through the last 2 boob-filled Films of David Sidaris, stay with me yet again...
In 2017, a Civil War has happened & freedom is nearly-dead.

Between watching this in 2017 and Escape from L.A. in 2013, I'm randomly-prescient.
Barb Wire is stuck between the 2 sides- jaded from dealing with both.  She runs a Nightclub...while also working as a Spy/Secret Agent.
She rescues a girl from a different Club (after doing a Flashdance routine) to show us that she's tough.
She continues to get involved in incursions with people while also telling people that she doesn't take sides.  Logic.
The crux of the Story: a pair of contact lenses that let you beat retinal scanners.  Thanks, Clint.
Barb's ally (Xander Berkeley) is stuck working with the main baddie (Steve Railsback).  Do you get that they are Nazis yet?
The Resistance comes to her for help as her former lover returns with a disguised Scientist trying to make it to Canada.  Guess what she needs.
This all leads to a big, silly shoot-out.  That leads to a battle with a crane, a forklift and a motorcycle.  For a Film with dark moments of Character deaths, our Lead Villain is killed like a Looney Tunes character. 
Casablanca.  The End.
Bad.  You know a Film is bad when it makes Shooting, Fighting and Boobs into something boring.  Barb Wire is just a bunch of shooting, melodramatic Acting and more shooting.  The Plot isn't interesting.  The Action is forgettable.  The Characters are disposable.  It actually wastes Udo Kier, which is really a criminal thing.  The whole thing looks nice enough at times, but amounts to nothing.  Pam Anderson dancing while water sprays on her- nice to look at.  A five minute set-piece of this to open your Film- meh.  I'd almost rather watch the Intro to Cool as Ice- almost.  I don't know who is mostly at fault here.  Is it the guy who tried to get Pamela Anderson to emote?  Is it the guy who hired a Music Video Director?  Is it the Music Video Director who couldn't even copy a Classic Film all that well?  This is all just so 'eh, whatever.'  In other words, it is no Tank Girl.  It is just a pointless, dreary version of Casablanca with Pamela Anderson in it.  Why?  Seriously, why?  Oh yeah, I forgot...
Next up, a return to Andy Sidaris.  Will he make a different Film, he asks already knowing the answer.  Stay tuned...

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