Friday, March 23, 2018

Boogievision (1977)

Despite marketing materials suggesting similarities to The Groove Tube (1974), Boogievision is actually a counterculture story about independent filmmaking, although it does features a few fake commercials. Struggling director Mick (Michael Laibson) discovers that his girlfriend’s dad, Burt (Bert Belant), is a producer, so Mick submits a script. Turns out Burt makes porn, so he hires the young filmmaker to crank out a skin flick. Mick rebelliously spends Burt’s money to make a politicized sci-fi freakout (with lots of nudie shots) called Lizard Women from Outer Space, and Burt is aghast when he discovers what happened. There’s no use fretting that Boogievision writer-director James Bryan botched his main story, which could have worked if it had fleshed-out characters, because delivering a straightforward narrative is clearly not what Bryan was after. Echoing the behavior of his main character, Bryan was all about, like, doing his own thing, man. Thus Boogievision meanders through pointless discursions and shapeless conversations, gradually drifting more and more toward unhinged druggy nonsense, only occasionally reverting to linear plotting. As for the caliber of the Bryans comedy, fake commercials in Boogievision include a trailer for The Excrementists, a scatological riff on The Exorcist (1973), and the film-within-a-film features political rhetoric from “The Radical Feminoids” as well as a chat with a lizard woman (meaning a topless starlet wearing a cheap-looking mask), who is upset about the commercialization of reptile hides. Viewed in tandem with the right controlled substances, maybe this stuff was amusing back in the day. Viewed sober in 2018, not so much.

Boogievision: LAME

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