A spoof of a spoof? Seduction Cinema's latest tongue-in-cheek offering takes a cheeky swipe at the Austin Powers films ...
A funky, fun psychedelic opening credits scene introduces us to the film's various characters as they dance into the camera to the mock 60's sounds of Trigger Finger. The dance is led by groovy chick April Flowers (Julian Wells, SKIN CRAWL; SHOCK-O-RAMA) - do you see what they've done there?!
Once the credits end, we're transported to 1969, and stock exterior footage of what is meant to be swinging London ...
As the camera zooms in on one particular apartment window, we cut to inside, and witness April getting up close and personal with a female friend. Literally within seconds they're both undressing each other in soft focus and getting it on.
But April's fun is soon curtailed as we discover that she - a top secret agent - and her halfwitted assistant Basil Shagalittle (Deal Paul) are ordered to travel 50 years forward in time. Their mission is to catch up with their arch enemy Dr Mean (Darian Caine, LUST FOR DRACULA; SEX HEX), who has invented a potion that turns people into sex-mad lunatics. Well, that's one way to rule the world ...
Mercifully short at 73 minutes in length (and that's this "unrated" version!), CLOAK AND SHAG HER - the sequel to 2003's APRIL SHOWERS: INTERNATIONAL GIRL OF SEXY - is on the one hand an unmitigated mess of ideas that never really get explored (time travel; the sex potion; Dr Mean's go-go-dancing clone).
But people don't buy films like CLOAK AND SHAG HER looking for expertly developed plot-lines or cleverly woven tales. What they want, presumably, are juvenile jokes based around tits, farts, knobs and arses; nudity, plenty of it, preferably female; a karate-literate gorilla (Michael Roszhart, FLESH FOR THE BEAST) and an infectious garage-pop soundtrack.
Stupid beyond belief, but highly spirited in it's delivery and benefiting enormously from a likeable "up for it" cast, CLOAK AND SHAG HER is fun if you can tune your brain onto it's wavelength. You may need to be extremely drunk to achieve this, mind ...!
Director William Hellfire (DUCK! THE CARBINE HIGH MASSACRE) keeps things moving at an agreeably brisk pace, the jokes coming thick and fast and the sex/nudity served up at impressively regular intervals. While it's only softcore fumblings, it's lovingly shot in colourful, soft-focus close-ups and the cast genuinely seem to be enjoying themselves.
Wells goes from strength to strength. After having impressed greatly in a gritty role in the remake of CHANTAL, here she gets to flex her comedy muscles - and just about manages to get away with some dreadful "comic" lines. It helps, of course, that she's never looked hotter than she does here. Seriously.
If you're in doubt after a psychedelic opening scene, the copious nudity, the gorgeous Wells and the lame slapstick, it may just be worth your sticking around for ... Wells and the gorilla in a boxing match!
CLOAK AND SHAG HER is presented in its original 1.33:1 aspect ratio in a vibrant, colourful and extremely sharp transfer. The English 2.0 audio does an equally impressive job.
Although there is no scene-selection menu, the main feature can be remote-accessed via 12 chapters.
Extras begin with a rather disorganised commentary track from Hellfire, producer Michael Raso and Director of Photography John Fedele. It's a more serious-natured, technical-minded affair than you'd expect.
Although I was disappointed Wells didn't get a look-in on the commentary, she does at least feature in the entertaining 31-minute Behind The Scenes featurette that follows. It's a well-made production offering cast and crew interviews in-between plenty of on-set footage.
Next we get no less than 36 trailers (!), including spots for the likes of SPIDERBABE, DADDY DARLING and KINKY KONG.
Last but by no means least is a second disc, including the original soundtrack by Trigger Finger on audio CD. Comprising of 19 tracks, this is an excellent addition to the package and very enjoyable to boot. Good, catchy fun.
Beautifully packaged and well served on DVD, CLOAK AND SHAG HER is incredibly dumb - at times it makes Troma's films look positively intellectual. But, it's got Julian Wells in it, and she looks better than ever before ...
Review by Stuart Willis
|Released by Seduction Cinema|
|Region 1 - NTSC|
|see main review|