A 1980 dystopian, sci-fi, biblical-allegory showbiz disco-rock opera
about an evil, all-powerful media mogul
and his powerful Boogaloo International Music (BIM) Mega Corp.
, the young starlet
fallen under his corrupting influence
and the all-Canadian baby-faced hero
determined to get her back out of his evil clutches. One of Cannon Films
' first English-language efforts, in trying to follow the success
of Saturday Night Fever
its outlandish premise winds up having more in common with Brave New World
, All That Jazz
, with a little Godspell
thrown in hastily at the last minute. It proved a major flop, concurrent with the sharp decline of Disco
Despite some rather heart-pumping music and dance numbers, the prosaic lyrics, trippy aesthetic
, and off-the-wall script place it squarely in Camp
territory. However, starting with its DVD release in 2004, it began to gather a small but dedicated cult following and started appearing on the midnight movie circuit.
Now available as a RiffTrax
video on demand download.
This film contains examples of:
- Aerith and Bob: Averted with Bibi and Alphie.
- All-Canadian Face / Canada, Eh?: Alphie and Bibi, who are revealed to be originally from Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.
- The Bad Guy Wins: A likely unintentional implication of the ending. All the people who've managed to resist Boogalow's control are raptured away to a new world, leaving no-one left on Earth to oppose him.
- Big Bad: Mr. Boogalow.
- Big Good: Mr. Topps.
- Corrupt the Cutie: BIM's efforts to control Bibi.
- Depraved Bisexual: Shakes, implicitly Mr. Boogalow as well.
- Deus ex Machina: A-near literal example with Mr. Topps, who is not only a seemingly all-powerful Messianic Archetype, but is never mentioned until moments before he arrives to rescue the heroes.
- The Dragon: Shakes.
- Evil Brit: Bibi's bodyguards/captors are the thuggish, Cockney-esque type, right down to being played by British actors.
- Fire and Brimstone Hell: An entire (imagined) musical number takes place there. Compared to the hippy commune of Paradise, it seems quite pleasant.
- High Heel-Face Turn: Bibi and later Pandi.
- Intercourse with You: Pandi's "I'm Coming" manages to make "Love To Love You Baby" seem subtle. even without the choreography.
- Jewish Mother: Alphie's landlady.
- Louis Cypher: Mr. Boogalow.
- Lyrical Shoehorn:
- Mark of the Beast: The BIM mark, which is a holographic sticker of the company's logo that Mr. Boogalow mandates all people wear on their face, to the point that violators will be threatened with fines or arrest.
- Mega Corp.: BIM. Eventually they become so powerful, the government requires everyone to wear their logo (referred to as "the BIM Mark") and stop all activity to listen to their music for an hour each day.
- Mind Screw
- New-Age Retro Hippie
- Produce Pelting: A Real Life variation. According to legend, the audience at the premiere were so horrified that they chucked the film's merchandise at the screen.
- Rape Portrayed as Redemption: Bizarrely inverted. At one of the party scenes Pandi orders two (presumably drugged) drinks for her and Alphie, but he drinks down both of them while she smiles sheepishly. Later she has sex with him while he's under the influence. The next day, she, the possible rapist, is the one who is redeemed, and finally decides to help Bibi escape.
- Serious Business: The BIM Hour, where everyone, regardless of whatever they're doing, breaks into choreographed dance numbers.
- Believe it or not, The director Menahem Golan took the failure of the film at an early screening in Montreal so personally that he tried throwing himself off of a bridge.
- Sissy Villain: A huge portion of Shake / Boogalow's inner circle fits one overblown Camp Gay stereotype or another.
- Slipping a Mickey: Happens at least once.
- Twenty Minutes into the Future: Made in 1980, set in the future dystopia of 1994.
- World of Ham: Clearly, subtlety was dead by 1994.