'80's Overdrive - 6 Movie Collection'
(Christian Slater, Johnny Depp, Rob Morrow, River Phoenix, Sidney Poitier, et al / 4-Disc Blu-ray / R / 2018 / Mill Creek Entertainment)
Overview: 6 Totally Awesome '80s films with the stars that defined a decade! Everything '80s in a movie collection with the biggest stars and films from the iconic decade. Enjoy comedy, drama and action in classic '80s fashion.
Blu-ray Verdict: In this incredible new 6 film collection we get: 'The Legend of Billie Jean,' 'Little Nikita,' 'Hardbodies,' 'Spring Break,' 'Perfect,' and then 'Private Resort.'
'The Legend of Billie Jean' (1985) was one of your typical '80s movies (hence why it is in this collection). It's hopelessly dated but back in the day it was a real hoot to watch on TV. The story is about two siblings that cross paths with some older punks.
Billy Jean is the name of the main character (Helen Slater, looking good) and she tries to fight for what she believes is right "Fair is fair!" Her brother is played by the infamous Christian Slater (sans Jack Nicholson accent). They some how come across a lecherous sleaze ball and get into all kinds of shenanigans. It has to be seen to be believed.
The fact that the basic plot of 'Little Nikita' (1988) is ridiculous fails to ruin it. FBI agent Roy Parmenter (Sidney Poitier) is interviewing Jeff Grant (River Phoenix) for his possible entrance into the Air Force Academy.
While reviewing Grant's file he discovers that his parents Richard (Richard Jenkins) and Elizabeth (Caroline Kava) are not who they seem to be. They turn out to be dormant Soviet spies, `sleepers', who have come to the United States and started a life with their son, who has no idea they are spies.
I won't even go into how silly it is the way Parmenter discovers this, as if computers REALLY work that way. Suffice it to say, when he finally tells an incredulous Jeff about his parents, several other sleepers have already been murdered by renegade double agent Scuba (Richard Lynch).
Before sitting down to watch 'Hardbodies' (1984), decide what you are looking for out of this film. Do you want a well-written movie with an engaging plot, Oscar-worthy performances and beautifully-written dialogue?
Then stay away from this movie. Do you want to see a fairly entertaining movie centered around fitting as much gratuitous shots of topless women as possible? Then you've found what you're looking for!
'Hardbodies' is a cheesy, '80s teen sex movie. But if you like cheesy, 80's teen sex movies, it's actually pretty good. It's better than any of the other ones out there. Some funny, quotable lines.
'Spring Break' (1983) is a charming Ft. Lauderdale, well, spring break film from the wondrous, colourful, sexy '80s. Would this movie ever win any awards for cinematic excellence? Not a chance. But then it never tries to be anything other than what it is; mindless spring break fun circa-1983, but with a difference.
The movie has heart, treating its likable leads in a positive way rather than depicting them as the stupid, sex-crazed, goofs that most films of the time seem to prefer. In short, there are a LOT less worthwhile ways to spend 101 minutes.
In 'Perfect' (1985), John Travolta tries his best as writer for Rolling Stone magazine hoping to finish an unflattering piece on the faddish California health club scene, but complications arise after he falls in love with a sexy, sensitive aerobics instructor (Jamie Lee Curtis).
This perfect-ly awful drama, shallow and dated, is surprisingly cynical about Rolling Stone and its ethics (this despite the fact the producers had the magazine's input and even cast its editor, Jann Wenner, in a supporting role!). However, the film does get a tiny bit of class from Jamie Lee Curtis, and supporting players Anne De Salvo as a photographer and Laraine Newman, as a wallflower are more than respectable in clichéd roles.
'Private Resort' (1985) is a typical '80s B-comedy, sure, but give it two male leads who would go on to bigger and, in Depp's case, much better things, and now this little-movie-that-could has become a cult classic!
Believe me or not, Depp and Morrow take two stock characters and make the material seem that much better; suddenly Jack and Ben hold the film together, rather than just reacting to everything within a narrow character description. Okay, so it's not art, but it's interesting from a film education perspective, if nothing else. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.