Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Never Too Young to Die (1986, Gil Bettman)
What is the weirdest movie you've ever seen? Before an hour ago I don't know what I would have said but now I do. It is Never Too Young to Die. What makes this seemingly typical bad 80's movie so weird? Pretty much everything. From the completely random cast to the mishmash of genres to the fact the title has absolutely nothing to do with the movie, this one takes the cake. Is it bad though? Very. But is it so bad it's good? Read on.
Never Too Young to Die starts off with the one time James Bond, George Lazenby playing (shock!) a secret agent named Drew Stargrove who is trying to stop a madman from polluting the city's drinking water. The madman ends up killing Stargrove but needs to find a diskette that Stargrove has hidden. Enter Stargrove's son Lance played by the eternally cool John Stamos, a (23 year old) high school student. Lance meets one of his father's accomplices, Danja Deering, played by 80s singer/model/actress Vanity and together they get into trouble with the madman who killed Lance's father. Oh, did I mention that the madman behind all of this is a leather clad, heavy metal-cabaret singing hermaphrodite named Ragner played by none other than GENE SIMMONS?!?
Seriously. What the fuck? Throw in Robert Englund as Ragner's right hand man and you have one of the most awesomely non-sensical casts ever assembled. To be honest though, the cast is the only reason I decided to watch this movie out of the millions of movies out there. It was just too strange to pass up. Other than the cast, the fact the film makers tries to mix so many genres into one movie is another factor in its weirdness. I guess I'd call it a secret agent, romantic action film with a post-apocalyptic look, a little bit of gore and a drag musical number for good measure. Now for the title. Ok, so it was uttered by one of the characters in the film, but it really has nothing to do with it. But I guess it's kind of a catchy title so I can see why they kept it. It's probably better than my title Stargrove vs the Heavy Metal Hermaphrodite. So, what's the verdict? I actually must admit that I enjoyed this film way more than I should, but honestly it was the cast that did it. None of the actors are actually talented but just seeing them thrown in together seemed like a stroke of genius. If you don't like the cast then I would stay far away from this movie because it is pretty bad. But it definitely fits into the so bad it's good category. You even get a touching moment where Stamos tells Simmons that he is pretty and Simmons tries to kiss Stamos in return. There is also a big reveal at the end that I predicted shortly after the movie started. There is much to laugh at and probably sitting around with a few friends and a case of beer is the best way to watch this trainwreck. I guess I'll give it a slightly above middle of the road rating only because the film was really bad but also quite enjoyable.
As far as I know this film has never been released on DVD but you can get old VHS copies relatively cheaply. Why this isn't on DVD is beyond me because I'm sure there is a niche of weirdos who would eat it up....or should I say...LICK IT UP. LICK IT UP. OH OH OH. IT'S ONLY RIGHT NOW!