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August 28, 2012

Movie Review: Screwballs (Blu-ray, 1983)

During the mid-eighties, the nine year-old me occasionally had had access to the to the late-night cable that frequently showed fare that was not quite for the eyes and ears of my corruptable being. After seeing Porky’s (thanks to my older brother renting it) all I wanted was to see was more films like it – filled with boobs, bad jokes and even more boobs. Although it was the pre-chili peeling years, I still had an early admiration for the female form.  

The High School and college T&A flick seemed to pop up around the same time Joe D’Amato’s Emmanuelle entries where broadcasted on cable which made myself a happy youngster. In the wee hours one Friday night I saw Rafael Zielinski Screwballs, a film that would stick with me for years and now, amazingly, it is available on Blu-ray by the folks at Severin Films. Who woulda thunk it?

The lovely Linda Shayne (Humanoids From the Deep) and one of the Kings of the titty flick, Jim Wynorski pen this comedy about a group High School troublemakers. One of the girls from the school, a virgin named Purity Busch (Linda Speciale), has a lock on the desires of the boys, but that doesn’t stop the guys from attempting to get a piece of Purity’s forbidden goods.

The story isn’t quite genius as it really just goes for the gags and a high nudity quota. It is produced by the one and only Roger Corman so you can’t expect much less.  There are plenty of highlights but one in particular featuring some classic flesh is a striptease by Russ Meyer hottie, Raven De La Croix ( Up!, The Chicken Chronicles ) It’s essentially just Raven doing a striptease for the boys but it has a almost hypnotic feel to it…because…well, her boobs are quite the sight. As for other things to look out for besides the rampant wiener jokes, Linda Shayne puts in one of the best performances as the bubbly, flirty minx, Bootsie Goodhead.

Severin has put together a goldmine of extra features for fans of Screwballs that definitely deserve some attention when the movie’s over. We get several interviews, deleted scenes and even a commentary with Director Zielinski. Zielinski brings up something interesting about his directing approach on the film – he infused a little Buster Keaton and Chaplin-esque humor to the proceedings to add to the overall goofiness.

Writer and star Linda Shayne and co-writer Jim Wynorski are on hand for a very enjoyable and playful interview. Shayne puts together an interesting impression of Roger Corman who seemed to not be too enthused after one bad test screening. Wynorski doesn’t come up short with anecdotes either.

Screwballs gets a very nice release by the folks at Severin Films. If you enjoy movies like Hot Dog: The Movie, Porky’s, Lunch Wagon, Hamburger: The Movie and other wild 80’s raunch you really have to own this. Recommended.

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