Tuesday, 14 October 2008
Weird Science at the IMDb
High school losers Gary and Wyatt are desperate to get laid, but have no chance when the school bullies pull their pants down in front of the girls’ gym class. After watching a strangely coloured version of ’Frankenstein’ they hit on the idea of creating a woman that they can, presumably, shag. Fortunately Wyatt is a spoiled child and has a computer set-up that would make NASA green with envy and programming skills that seem somewhat advanced for 1985.
After feeding in a lot of pictures into a handy slot on the computer they press ‘enter’ just as the house is hit by lightening. As movie law dictates they don’t get a blown fuse but the shapely Kelly LeBrock in small purple panties instead. I always just get an error message - bah! Despite their earlier bravado the lads are unable to take advantage of their willing cyber-babe, settling instead for a threesome in the shower with their pants on.
The digital babe, who is soon named ‘Lisa’, takes the lads out for a night on the town where they get annoyingly pished in stereotyped black bar. The boys are fitted out in fashionable gears and given fancy cars by Lisa but are still picked on by the bullies, including a fey looking Robert Downey Jnr. and Wyatt’s brother played by Bill Paxton in typically obnoxious form.
In a bid to court popularity they hold a party to impress the girls and the rest of the school, who are invited by Lisa. The house however gets wrecked by a bunch of biker mutants and by a nuclear missile conjured up when an attempt to replicate the experiment, that created Lisa, goes awry.
Can the house be fixed before the parents get back and can the lads find love out with the digital realm?
This is an awful film by John Hughes who also gave us the flawless ‘Pretty in Pink’ (unless you dislike Duckie Dale, which I do). It’s basically nerd wish fulfilment, with the pair of immature tossers getting the dream girl and all the stuff they ever wanted for the flick of a switch. Added to that they get the girls and show up the bullies and best the nasty brother. Pity the poor losers who try this for real and burn their house down and get raped in jail!
The two leads are not likable at all and the acting talent that Gary showed in the great ’Vacation’ has all but deserted him at this point. His wimpy pal is worse and his ’I love you scene’ at the end was cringeworthy. Paxton had a one dimensional role but still doesn’t convince as the bullying brother and as an actress LeBrock looks nice, but that’s it.
It may seem a bit harsh to give a kicking to a teenage romp with cut off tee-shirts and shower scenes but it really is chronic. When the lads ditch Kelly for the real life lovelies we are expected to admire their development from nerds to players, but instead it just doesn’t ring true. There are a couple of decent sequences but overall the film is morally ambiguous and more than a little misogynistic too. Not that these are necessarily bad things (!) but in the context of a teen film they’re plain wrong.
The nerd watching this at home between fits of tears would draw two conclusions - suck up to the bullies and forget your own beliefs to be accepted, and the girl that previously wouldn’t give you the time of day is worth having over Kelly because she now likes your Ferrari. Worthwhile advice there for all!
Surprisingly this tosh spawned a TV series that ran for two years and featured the even lovelier Vanessa Angel (Kingpin). I may have to investigate that too to see if the moral ambiguity has been maintained!
Best Bit : ’The Hills Have Eyes’ guy shows up
‘W’ Score : 11/23