Stewardess School (1987)

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"This is one flight you'll never forget."

Directed by Ken Blancato
Starring Brett Cullen, Don Most and Sandahl Bergman

    A bunch of mis-fits and no-hopers join a stewardess school. Get into zany adventures, but then have to work together as a team and complete their training.

What’s wrong with it?

    Police Academy has a lot to answer for. After the first few films, there were a thousand imitation movies all set in various different institutions and locations. And this is the worst.
    This film is truly terrible. There are no jokes. The characters aren’t even interesting (Come back Steve Guttenburg…All is forgiven). Most of it is a re-hash of Police Academy, but while Police Academy (well the first two) had its moments, this fails in every way.
    I kept waiting for a punchline…And I’m still waiting,

What’s right with it?

    If anyone has any suggestions I’d be happy to hear them.

How bad is it really?

    Think Police Academy without the jokes, characters or camp, quirky appeal.

Best Bit?

    There isn’t.

What’s up with…?

    The entire film.


Production Values – Cheap sets. Nobody actors. Grainy film stock. 20

Dialogue and performance – There is nothing of value in either the acting or script. 20

Plot and execution – The plot is a complete rip-off from Police Academy, including characters and gratuitous breasts. The storyline weaves all over the place. And it probably all ends in some 80’s rock (I wouldn’t know, I didn’t get to the end!) 20

Randomness – You betcha! Blind passengers, businessmen on LSD, crazed terrorists, biker punks and exposed breasts. They’re all here, and none are explained. 20

Waste of Potential – With a title like ‘Stewardess School’ this was pretty much going to be crapola wasn’t it. 0

Overall 80%


The Lost World (1960)

"150,000,000 Years Ago or Today?"

Directed by Irwin Allen
Starring Michael Rennie, Jill St John, David Hedison, Claude Raines

BMM Keywords: So bad it's good, huge lizards, gratuitous eye candy.

    Professor Challenger (Raines) leads an expedition onto the lost plateau, including diamond-hunting adventure Lord Roxton (Rennie), 'London' reporter Malone (David 'I'm in all Irwin Allen's films, and I'm oh so American besides' Hedison), a vengeful helicopter pilot and rival academic Professor Summerlee. Enter spoiled rich-girl Jennifer (St John), in pursuit of Roxton, and her kid brother, to keep things turning over.
    Cue a series of daft outfits on Jill St John; attacks by monitor lizards with bits of plastic glued to them, stalking through miniature terrain; a monster fight (lizard vs. alligator); a gratuitous native bint in a very short frock; a cannibal tribe; a lost blind white guy with some helpful hints; and a big explosion at the end as the plateau erupts.

What's wrong with it?

    Starting small, Jennifer Holmes is an insult to all respectable spunky love-interests, being a useless shrieky tart, who turns out not to be there for love, but because she wants to marry Lord Roxton's title. After he turns out to be a mercenary git, she starts clinging pathetically to Malone. The gratuitous native bint saves everyone's lives, but is so gratuitous that even when they meet the blind white guy who knows her and speaks her language, she is not given a name.
    But these are small quibbles, compared to the - for want of a better word - dinosaurs.
    Literally, the alleged dinosaurs are lizards - or in one case an alligator - with plastic frills and horns glued on, shot against small terrain. They look terrible. To add insult to injury, the frilled monitor is described by Challenger as a 'brontosaurus', and he later declares the aquatic one with horns a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

What's right with it?

    The Lost World has a certain hokey charm, and a few unusual angles in its vengeance sub-plot (Roxton abandoned the blind man's expedition, and the pilot's brother was killed), but really there's not much else to it.

How bad is it really?

    Pretty naff really, but not intolerable. Plenty of stiff upper lips, and a little two fisted action.

Best bit?

    Tough call. For amusement value, the natives getting their funk on to the crazy plateau beats is a hoot, but the monster fight - for which I'm pretty sure they just let the lizard and the gator go to it, the through them both off a shelf - just takes the prize.

What's up with?


Production values - Pretty lame monsters, and some unconvincing lava. Oh, and the world's worst superimposed giant tarantula. 18

Dialogue and performances - Aside from the immense non-Britishness of the British characters, the playing is pretty good, but the script gives them very little to work from. 13

Plot and execution - A slim plot goes a long way in this film, which sheds most of Conan Doyle's material for a good monster fight and chase through the lava caves. Still, the pace is pretty good. 12

Randomness - Monsters appear out of nowhere quite a lot, and there's the attack of the shrubs of course. Probably a 12, but for the lava dam. 16

Waste of potential - Conan Doyle's story has had a dozen interpretations on film, most of them better than this one. Even in its day, dinosaur effects could be done better. This was a blast from the past even in the sixties, harking back to the black-and-white days of MST3K favourite, The Giant Gila Monster. 18

Overall 77%


Blast (1996)

Directed by Albert Pyun
Starring Linden Ashby, Andrew Divoff, Kimberly Warren and Rutger Hauer

BMM Keywords: Dull, unacceptable pretensions.

    Based on a story that might have been true if we hadn't made all of it up, this is a rather tacky entry into the Die Hard sub-genre by Hawaiian bad movie auteur Albert Pyun.
    Jack Bryant (Ashby) is a janitor working the pool complex at the Atlanta Olympics as work furlough after a prison spell for an undisclosed crime. But once he was a contender, a Tae Kwon Do bronze medallist in Barcelona, until an injury in his winning match sidelined him. But, fate deals him a chance at redemption when the US women's swim team - coached by his ex-wife, Diane (Warren) - are taken hostage by mad terrorist Omado (Divoff), who has had a couple of bad missions and wants to prove to the terrorist community at large that he's still got it. With all of the security guards dead, only Bryant can save the day, with the external assistance of European Security Consultant, Colonel Leo (Hauer).

What's wrong with it?

    Well, to start with the obvious, this is an absolute knock-off of Die Hard, just set in an Olympic swimming pool. Man tries to talk to his ex-wife, ends up the only man left free in a terrorist controlled building. He has to take out the terrorists one at a time, while his wife gamely tries to protect the other hostages. Damn it, we even have our hero limping around - from his old injury, rather than from walking on broken glass, but still - and the wife's slime-ball coaching partner selling everyone out for his own freedom, then getting shot by the bad guys anyway.
    Alas, Linden Ashby - while an affable and fairly charismatic lead - is no Bruce Willis, and in any case is not given a real John McClane of a role (for starters it's been done before now). Moreover, Andrew Divoff - the genie in Wishmaster - is certainly no Alan Rickman, and Rutger Hauer is in pigtails.

What's right with it?

    Good question. Not much really. This film fails to deliver on almost every level.

How bad is it really?

    Bad, but not to the point of being actively painful, which is pretty much damning with faint praise.

Best bit?

    Nothing is interesting enough to spring to mind.

What's up with...?


Production Values - For a film about terrorist bombers, even the explosions are kind lame. The props budget was also plainly very limited, as the terrorists all run around with handguns; not an Uzi or AK-47 between them, and those things are pretty easy to get hold of...So I understand. The camerawork borders on competence in a way that really only aggravates. 13

Dialogue and Performances - Workmanlike performances fail to cover a pretty patchy script, and Andrew Divoff sadly comes off as more of a sleaze-bag than a terrifying, cold-blooded terrorist. Everyone suffers from the inevitable comparisons to Die Hard, which is the fault of the script for creating such direct parallels more than the actors. 16

Plot and Execution - The plot loses points, big-time, for being almost a scene-by-scene rehash of Die Hard, only nowhere near as good. The execution has Albert Pyun's trademark moments of genius, punctuating acres of cack-handed misdelivery. 15

Randomness - Pretty low-level, except that the whole plot makes no damn sense. 8

Waste of Potential - Die Hard plotline, a little Tae Kwon Do; it could have been good. Not great, mind you, but certainly an enjoyable ninety minutes in which to disengage the old brain. But no. 16

Overall 68%