Monday, 29 August 2011

Tank Girl (1995)

Written by Happywax     Aug 2011
Rating 7.5 out of 10

Director - Rachel Talalay

Lori Petty - Tank Girl
Naomi Watts - Jet Girl
Ice-T - T-Saint
Malcolm McDowell - Keslee
James Hong - Che'Tsai
Hey all you wasteland warriors Happys got a movie I'm kicking myself in the butt for not seeing sooner. Tank Girl was a movie I had heard about for some years, but had never sought it out; not something I thought would make for quality viewing, some silly mid 90s comedy about some weird girl hero or something. Boy, was I wrong! This is a definition of guilty pleasure, or close to it for a mid 90s comic book movie, and it's one I would be more than happy to pop in on a sick day from work. It's a movie you have to smile at, feel like both the kid in you and the dirty bastard or girly girl loves to chomp on like some stupid comic book that has all the meat and gravy of a full-throttle action story mixed in with lots of irreverent humor. It pops and crackles like a comic book (hell, it even throws in animated segways, maybe as a way to save money, but it looks as cool as anything from the period), and it's got a weird ensemble ranging from Malcom McDowell to Iggy Pop and Ice-T... as a Kangaroo.

Lori Petty stars in what could be considered a real career high point. Before seeing her in this I only remembered her as Geena Davis's sister in A League of Her Own, and wondered if she could pull it off. At first her image is like a junkyard Gwen Stefani , but she's got the attitude of a real bad-ass, which is important as her role in this often pitts her into the likes of Snake Plissken and some other cowboy types, but always with the spunk of a punk rock chick with style and wit to spare.

 She's in a post apocalyptic world where water is a precious commodity (though, unlike Waterworld, it doesn't flaunt the irony of 'all this water and not a drop to drink', albeit there's a hot 'dust' shower scene). A mad commander of a corporation (McDowell, subtle ham-bone if there could be an oxymoron as such) who controls water and, thus, power. He captures her for hard slave labor, but she teams up with a young Naomi Watts and escapes to a renegade gang of kangaroos as they plot to destroy the evil corporation and................

Yeah, kangaroos, and that's not all- one of them is really half kangaroo and half dog! It's all very silly, but it revels in its silliness, and makes a note of every other second or so reminding you how buoyant it is with its reckless energy and humor and design. It's a lot like if a Sci-fi channel of the week movie actually worked well; the production design isn't too tacky and eye-catching on a fairly low budget, the actors are all having a ball playing odds and ends of good guys or kangaroos or villainous water mongers. And at the middle is Petty, who is sweet and charming and dangerous and puts on an outfit and hair style like a reject from the latest Hot Topic catalog (and damn proud of it).

You kind of have to dig what she's about in the part to dig a lot of the picture, but once plugged in- on top of stuff like McDowell's reconstruction surgery, Watts with black hair and glasses, and Ice-T and that guy from Buffy as kangaroo manimals- it's hard not to have a total gas with it. This movie is definatly BAD ASS and is a must see for all comic Buffs , I guarantee you wont be disapointed.

No comments:

Post a Comment