Friday, May 13, 2022

Bimbos B.C. (1990)

Directed by:
Todd Sheets

Sheets had at least a few things going in his favor. First, he was extremely prolific. Second, he was able to start his career at the tail end of the big video boom, when nearly everything, no matter how awful, was getting some kind of video release. Third, he got David DeCoteau onboard as an executive producer for many of his early homemade productions, which established connections to a number of fringe home video distributors. These three factors pretty much insured he would one day be viewed as a “cult” filmmaker. That also meant many of his shot-with-a-camcorder-for-next-to-nothing efforts received VHS distribution and haunted the dust bins of many U.S. video stores for years. Then when DVDs took over, these were thrown on those cheap multi-film bargain sets that everyone used to buy. This one was included in the Mill Creek / Pendulum Pictures 50 film set "Mansion of Madness," which utilizes a very shoddy print filled with tape rolls and video damage.

Bimbos received two separate video releases in the 90s. The first was a 1992 release from Cinema Home Video, who also released a number of other DeCoteau and Sheets films. In 1997, it was then put out by Video Outlaw (a sub-label of Tempe Video), whose telling motto was "Movies so bad, there outta' be a law!" Who said there was no such thing as truth in advertising? Outlaw's catalogue of crapola write-up also includes the following disclaimer: "If you absolutely despise insipid acting, laughable fx, pathetic editing, horrendous lighting and idiotic plots - or if you can't get your fill of them - then say hello to the new and improved series of God-awful worst of the worst films we had the good fortune to discover. These movies MUST be destroyed for the safety and well being of us all!

Video Outlaw sold Bimbos B.C. either for 20 bucks a pop (which may exceed the film's entire actual budget), or bundled with two other SOV bimbo-fests: Sheets' first sequel Prehistoric Bimbos in Armageddon City (1991), which features many of the same characters, and the Gary Whitson / W.A.V.E. Productions (a company whose videos are always comically overpriced) effort Bimbo Warriors on Zombie Island (1995), a re-title of his Zombie Holocaust aka Female Mercenaries on Zombie Island. That trio of tapes would have set you back a measly 60 bucks back in the day. Sheets' third and final bimbo film, Bimbos in Time (1993), also has the same characters and much of the same cast. It, along with some Bimbos tie-in comic books (!), were distributed by Draculina.

After a worldwide war has destroyed much of humanity, those surviving the devastation are divided into two camps: The regular survivors, who were forced to live underground, and the wealthy, elite and scientists, who were able to live a life of luxury above ground in Armageddon City, what used to be New York City. Thanks to use of experimental chemicals in the development of bioweapons, murderous mutants and beasts now roam the planet. A group of warrior women led by Rochelle are currently residing in an above-ground laboratory, along with Daria Solomon aka Doc (Veronica Orr), a scientist and defector who now wants restitution for her past sins, and "Larry the Male Bimbo" (Matthew Lewis). While out hunting in the woods, Rochelle is attacked and bitten by some red and black hairy monster that looks like a cross between a bird, a skunk and one of those cheap stuffed animals you can win at sleazy carnivals. She's able to make it back to the lab but is now infected and will rot from the inside out if nothing is done. The problem is that the only known cure is located in Armageddon City and Doc is now forbidden from going back there.

With their leader's life on the line, warrior woman Trianna (Gina Rydeen) decides to take over and stage a rescue attempt. She's instructed to choose a handful of her most trusted and skilled warriors, which she finds in Dillea (Jenny Admire) and Johnna (Lisa Cotton). The group first pin down a zombie invader and proceed to punch, kick and dismember it before one of the girls rips out its eyeball with her bare hands. Once they enter Armageddon City, the obese, greedy, corrupt, murderous and heavily-eyeshadowed Mayor Salacious Thatch (Deric Bernier), who was also responsible for murdering Trianna's family, is tipped off about the intruders. He orders his military commander, General Morbius (J.T. Taube), to send some goons to kill them, though the women are easily able to fend them off and rescue kidnapped sister Saffire (Stephanie Malone). Morbius reports back to Thatch that the female warriors are "heavily armed and really pissed off, kind of like ninja commandos, only with a great set of tits." Er. Ya.

After causing an earthquake (?) by knocking down a cross and having to fight some more zombies / mutants, the girls, plus John Apollo (Charles Monroe), an associate of Doc's who was sent there to help them out, find themselves being kidnapped and chained up in a prison cell by the bad guys. One of the ladies is dismembered and eaten by the cannibalistic mayor, which results in him eventually getting his hand cut off and crotch stabbed. Upon successful completion of their mission, one of the girls turns to the camera and announces the upcoming sequel.

While there's not a single aspect of this video that isn't ripe for mockery, whatever DIY Z-grade charm this manages to muster up is squashed by the constant ineptitude and time padding (with seemingly endless walking-around-the-woods shots), which grow monotonous very early on. People look directly at the camera (sometimes intentionally), laughter from the crew can be heard from off-screen and the main bad guy tells his underling he should "watch a good comedy like I Spit on Your Grave." The acting, dialogue, direction, costumes, editing, videography, sound and pretty much everything else is as bad as it gets, and yet this still could have been fun if Sheets only knew how to effectively work around his budget constraints. He even finds a couple of locations (a crumbling, graffiti'd up building in the woods; some urban settings) that could conceivably work to capture a post-apocalyptic mood yet insists instead on shooting most of this at a regular old school, with a library that they don't even bother trying to redress used for the bad guy's headquarters and a school health station with a lice poster on the front door used as the lab.

But there's an even worse offense here than that: The director thinking it would be a good idea to fill his movie with fight scenes, which he has zero clue how to stage, direct or edit. Weapons, fists and feet never make contact with bodies (something that could be hidden with proper camera angles, editing and post production work), sound effects are absent most of the time and the actors seem to be clumsily moving around in slow motion as if trying to remember what they're supposed to be doing next. And don't even get me started on all of the swordfights!

Sheets also appears here in a supporting role as a goon named Pringle, wrote the screenplay and cast the film (as "Roger Williams") and I'm pretty sure also did some of the metal music, which is credited to Enochian Key. The script, credited to "A/V Concepts," and editing, credited to "The Chopper," also also probably Sheets. The running time is barely over an hour. You may not even last that long.

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