my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   Revenge of the Cheerleaders
Director:   Richard Lerner
Year:   1976
Genre:   Cheerleader
Times Seen:   2
Last Seen:   04.07.07

Other Movies Seen By This Director (0)

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
04.07.07Alamo DowntownThis Screening is part of event: Grindhouse All Nighter
We all watch movies, some more than others, and as we see more and more we come to know certain similarities that films share; signifiers exist to clue us in on what kind of movie this is, what to expect from this movie, etc. And then every so often (and this happens very rarely), you watch a movie that you flat out can not believe exists. You soak it up through your eyeballs and take it in as best you can but when you start to think about what circumstances had to exist and what kind of people must've come together in some sort of cosmic alignment in order for something this crazy to actually manifest into the material world, your brain quickly starts to complain. Darktown Strutters was one such film for me, Fight for your Life and Drum are others. Revenge of the Cheerleaders is most definitely one of these films.

It's the story of an unruly gang of aggressively nubile cheerleaders who rule their laid back school with tinges of Troma rancor mixed with highschool satire, teen sex romp, and way too much weed. Weird things happen in this film, things that don't make any sort of sense at all. The principle cooks a full turkey in his office, reprobates from the opposing vocational school can shatter soda glasses with their bare hands, fire extinguishers demand as much obedience as a handgun, and not only does the cheerleading directly affect the outcome of a basketball game but the final score of said game determines whether one school merges with another. Everyone's naked all the time and when they're not they're pissed off about it. David Hasslehoff plays a character named Boner and gets full frontal. At several points, someone puts on a random funky tune and everyone in the entire movie starts dancing in some loosely choreographed routine. School board members have secret underground lairs accessible via golf course sandtraps. This is not the world that I live in.

Watching Revenge of the Cheerleaders is a real experience. It's something I suspect doesn't translate too well to home video, without the crowd of people surrounding you, reacting to the multitude of crazy-ass spectacles flashing on the screen, and succumbing to a group-think orgy of the ludicrous and absurd. I first saw this film by sneaking into a QT cast screening when Grindhouse first started shooting. He held double features every Tuesday night starting at midnight for a few weeks to let the cast and crew get a taste of what he and Rodriguez were going for. Watching it with an intimate collection of famous people, obnoxious people, friendly people and Nicky Katt (who I put in a separate category alltogether) was a great and surreal experience. I had a hard time believing what I saw that night and I honestly still do. Revenge of the Cheerleaders is the kind of movie where you get the feeling that if you were to try and critique it in any way, the film itself would reach out and slap you across the face. I still don't understand how it can defy convention yet fit perfectly into its very specific genre but it does. Best seen at 2AM with 200 of your closest friends.
04.04.06Alamo Downtown I used the restroom in between shows and when I walked back into the theater, I saw QT look at me for a second. Then he nodded and I nodded back. I got the strong feeling that he thought maybe I was some random crew person who he maybe met once but has since totally forgotten about but wants to make me think he still remembers me. Hey, I'll take a nod from QT any way I can get it.

Unfortunately, for whatever reason Sean the projectionist just started playing trailers at some point so QT didn't get to intro the next movie at all. Maybe it's because the already-tiny crowd of 20 had cut in half by that point... who knows. It's kind of a shame too because after seeing it I really wanted to know his thoughts on it. When the movie was over I saw that QT had even bailed before the end, leaving only Rodriguez, his probably-wife, and a few other random people in the theater aside from the group of us. It's a shame too because this movie is hilarious and awesome and I'd love to see it with a packed crowd. Kier-La said that the Alamo is playing it in a few weeks so I'll get a chance to do that hopefully.

Revenge of the Cheerleaders... well... OK. In the first scene, this incredibly hot-bod'd blonde cheerleader has sex in a bathroom stall and who walks out but a young david hasselhoff playing a character named Boner. That's a pretty good indication of the theme and style of this movie... it's really hilarious and very very cheap. Sometimes the movie drops to a 16mm blow-up for random insert shots... like the director desperately needed about 3 minutes of connective tissue footage to make the movie follow the slightest bit of logic, but nearly every line is some sort of really bad joke or insult like a couple low-brow reprobates from rival school Lincoln Vocational telling off a cheerleader with "up your middle class ass." The few scenes set in Lincoln high are awesome, with constant wood shop sounds going on in the background and a whole class of greasers not listening to an extremely apathetic teacher explaining how stenographic shorthand could mean the difference between a low-paying job and a middle-paying one. Later, Rainbeaux Smith and a fellow cheerleader from Aloha High will hold the classroom up with a fire extinguisher, collecting everybody's drugs (including the teacher's, stashed away in her stocking) and dumping them in the school cafeteria's spaghetti sauce in the makings of what felt like a 20-minute long food fight sequence that ranges from amusing to funny to downright disgusting. The cheerleader squad is made up of hot stereotypes and they all get naked... well, everyone except for the fake-pregnant one. It's just a great great movie that's funny and quick until the last 20 minutes, where they have a qhole basketball game where the home team is losing until the cheerleaders step in and cheer their way to victory in an effort to sort of have to make the movie have a point... then there's this huge long chase sequence that ends up in a land developer's evil underground lair. Yeah... it's that kind of movie.

I'm sure there are about a thousand reasons why movies like this don't get made anymore... but you know it's still a shame.

So another awesome geek-out night of crew screenings. Maybe next week Tim will be there so I can get him to introduce me to QT and ask for an interview for the doc. here's hoping!
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