Friday, July 22, 2016

She Wolves of the Wasteland - 1988

Persis Khambatta had a short career, made even shorter perhaps by her death at age 49.  She is best known from Star Trek: The Motion Picture, where she plays the bald alien Ilia.  I first noticed her in Star Trek, where she is a creepy and very prominent character.  It takes a lot to be cast in a Star Trek movie and to stand out despite not being part of the regular cast of Shatner et all.

It's kinda funny because the rest of her roles are basically B movie haven, with made for TV flicks and films such as Warrior of the Lost World, Megaforce, and some second rate Stallone feature.  This one, She Wolves of the Wasteland (also known as Phoenix the Warrior) is no better than those.  She Wolves is your average rip off of Conan the Barbarian with a female cast much like the recently reviewed Hundra.  Toss in some Mad Max and some Hell Comes to Frog Town and that's basically She Wolves.

Let's combine the elements here:  post-apocalypse like Mad Max, but in this apocalypse there are not as many cars and badasses wearing leather, instead the world has regressed to a caveman era of technology, and the nuclear holocaust has caused the male population to almost die out completely.  Much like Hell Comes to Frog Town, the plot line is in search of a fertile male to which they can repopulate the world.  So main good girl Phoenix and her small group of females is pursued by evil clan leader Cobalt played by Persis Khambatta.

I was extremely surprised to find out just now that lead actress Kathleen Kinmont had a long and continuing career as an actress: she comes off in this like she is awful and has no clue what she's doing.  But then again so does everyone else.  Based on this movie I would think no one in it had been in anything else, as well as I'd think the director was some high school gym teacher who decided to make a movie.  Persis Khambatta appears to be attempting to ham it up but instead just comes off as overacting, really awful, and completely ridiculous.  So, the problems with this aren't singular.

The DVD I watched was definitely sourced from a VHS as well.  I can't imagine why you'd put the VHS as it is directly onto the DVD without cleaning it up in some way.  This must've been a very early DVD, when people were still confused by "the black bars on the screen" and they didn't expect things like higher quality or a variety of special features.  It's even got the signature soundtrack fuck ups that are well known and associated with VHS,

All that considered, it sounds like the sort of thing I'd like, right?  Campy and low budget, ripoff, VHS style.  Yet, I didn't really like it.  I dunno why per say, but it felt like it was just TOO bad.  Like, nothing in it went right and instead of being fun for that reason, it was instead dull for that reason.  The action is subdued and the plot is thin. Basically it holds no strict entertainment value.  But the music, the locations and the effort is still there, and others might like this more.  Maybe I just wasn't in the mood for it. It does have about 3 minutes of some topless girls too.  But not even much skin, it's like just enough to get the skin in, but not so much where they'd have to edit it a lot to show it on TV.

Eh, whatever.  I give it a 2.

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