April 28, 2006

Bill and Ted’s Excellent Freakshow!

Alex Winter stars as Ricky Coogan, a “wacky” washed up child star that travels to South America in order to promote a mutagenic fertilizer. His “wacky” best friend (played by Blossom’s brother…not the one that says “Whoa!” all the time…the other one) accompanies him and they hook up with a “wacky” environmental activist. They end up visiting a roadside Freak Show and get captured by the “wacky” proprietor, played by Randy Quaid. Are you seeing a theme here? Everyone’s “wacky”? If everyone’s “wacky” – what’s the point?

Randy Quaid then doses them with stuff that looks suspiciously like Double Dare Slime to turn them into Circus freaks. He locks them in a shed, where they meet the rest of the Freaks. Mr. T is the unsexiest Bearded Lady ever. Bobcat Goldthwait has a sock puppet for a head. There are a bunch of other, less amusing freaks as well – like Worm-Man and Cow-Boy. There’s also a guy who farts a lot. I don’t mean to be picky, but that doesn’t seem to be much of a Freak Show attraction. I could do the job after a visit to Taco Bell.

Keanu Reeves was excellent (pardon the pun) in his cameo as Ortiz, the Dog Boy. Finally, he’s found a role commensurate with his talent, experience and emotional range. Oh, I kid, I kid…he isn’t qualified to be a Dog Boy either. I’m just glad to see him not saving the world for once. What a burden, being typecast as a messiah.

You know the one thing in this movie that I just DID NOT get? The Rastafarian Eye Police. Literally – Eyeballs…that were Rastafarian…in police uniforms, brandishing automatic weapons. Maybe it was because I was stone cold sober…or maybe it was because the makers of this film obviously were not.

At least the music was good. I immediately recognized Henry Rollins singing the theme song during the opening credits. Gibby Haynes has a cameo and also provides some Butthole Surfers music. I tell you, I sure do miss 90s music.

Imagine what those sick fucks over at TROMA could have done with $12 Million. I bet they could have made Freaked 3 times over, with money left to spare. I appreciate the attempt to make a somewhat big budget “B” movie – but really, it was kind of a waste. I’m thinking that I would have like Freaked a lot more if I had seen it when it first came out…but it’s hard to get overly excited about Claymation in 2006. If it came down to it though, I prefer good Claymation to bad CGI any day of the week. Take that, Sci Fi Channel!

Year – 1993
Rating – PG-13
Runtime – 86 minutes
Genre – "Wacky" Comedy
Director(s) – Tom Stern, Alex Winter
Writer(s) – Tim Burns, Tom Stern, Alex Winter
Actor(s) – Alex Winter, Michael Stoyanov, Megan Ward, William Sadler, Randy Quaid
BOB Rating – Two BOBs
Favorite Quote – "Twelve milkmen IS theoretically possible. Thirteen is silly. Looks like there's one milkman too many, Coogan!" - Ortiz the Dog Boy (Keanu Reeves)