Amazon Women on the Moon (1987)

Hilarious, witty and side-splitting…

…are all words associated with good comedy. In the case of Amazon Women on the Moon (1987), other adjectives apply; dull, self-indulgent and tragically unfunny. I like a laugh as much as the next man and when I saw this little nugget of cinematic history going for the low, low, price of €1 in my local discount store, I thought: ‘Aha! They don’t know what they’re selling here – I’ll snap that up!’ And so I did, skipping gaily out of the shop (stop it), I rushed home and prepared myself for a feast of televisual mirth. As it transpires, my local discount store knew exactly what they were selling and must have had the biggest laugh ever to be associated with this film when they saw me scurrying out of their doors, cackling maniacally at my presumed good fortune.

AWOTM is brought to our screens by what even the most hackneyed film critic would rate as a pretty strong cast and production team. In the actors’ camp we have Michelle Pfeiffer, Arsenio Hall, Phil Hartman, B.B. King, Rosanna Arquette, Steve Guttenberg, Ed Beglet Jr and plenty of others, including many of the “oh, it’s him – the one who played the guy opposite that girl in that TV programme we used to watch” variety. In addition, a directorial team of five including Joe Dante (Gremlins (1984)), Robert K. Weiss (The Blues Brothers (1980) and The Naked Gun (1988)) and the legendary John Landis should pretty much guarantee a winner. Sadly, this film is so much less than the sum of its parts.

The film itself loosely hinges around a 1950s-style B-movie sci-fi flick (The eponymous AWOTM) and the ‘hilarious’ antics that occur during the many technical hitches and re-spoolings of the film reel. This, in itself is not completely terrible and the stuttering production and faux technicolor are done reasonably well.

We open with Arsenio Hall arriving at his accommodation and not having the best of days. Tie stuck in the waste disposal, exploding television, bookcases falling on his head. Laugh? I nearly started. I kept wondering what the punchline would be and was disappointed to discover there was none.  Following that (difficult as it obviously was) we have a wake in which a panel of old-time comedians make jokes about the deceased, an old Jewish guy getting sucked into the TV by misuse of the remote control (a premise that could easily have been 100 times funnier than it actually was) and a grand total of 21 other sketches, all as unfunny as the last. I would list them all, but I would like you, dear reader, to revisit this site from time to time.

Out of the lot, there were two that really stood out as being better than the rest – although only in the same way that a lolly stick would stand out of a dog turd. Carrie Fisher’s take on 1930s ‘information’ films about a dirty little strumpet putting it about and getting the clap had the tone just about right, while the skit built around a black guy with no soul and who wore his jumper around his neck preppy-style while singing songs that would make Barry Manilow cringe was funny enough, until they did it to death.

Quick mental maths tell me that at €1 for 23 skits, plus the ‘feature’ itself (let’s call it two skits’ worth) equals two cents per skit. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to the shop where I bought this to bang on the counter and demand my 96 cents back.

85 mins. In black & white and colour.

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Colin Moors

Colin reviews films. It's what he does.

8 thoughts on “Amazon Women on the Moon (1987)”

  1. No sooner posted than commented upon, Colin – I feel that I must share some of the blame for your movie misfortune, as I seem to remember that I sort of, kind of, half recommended that you watch this. To explain why, I would draw our readers’ attention to the image I have chosen to illustrate the post, which comes from the sketch by Joe Dante, Son of the Invisible Man.

    For me, this was and still is a pitch-perfect spoof on James Whale’s The Invisible Man (1933), based on what I consider to be a wonderful idea – what if the titular man lacking visibility was, in fact, completely visible and completely insane? And if the customary local yokels in the village pub were in fact perfectly aware of this, but were too polite to say anything, choosing instead to pretend to be scared when the naked nutter waves chess pieces and such around, going ‘woo, woo’? 😀

    Worth your one euro? I think so… 😉

  2. Dear James,

    As you well know, there are ‘local yokels’ and nutters aplenty in certain parts of Lancashire (though, thankfully not too many of them are naked). 😉

    You could’ve saved Colin a euro and done a report from here to prove your point! 🙂

  3. Trudy, an *enormous* pleasure to welcome you to Picturnose’s hallowed halls, many thanks indeed for your comment. Yes, right, if I had done that and said such a thing in a review here, you’d have been really happy, wouldn’t you? 😉 x

    Fred, likewise great to finally have you opining. I look forward to lots more from both of you. Gros bisous, J 🙂

  4. I’m sure I’ve posted before? I’m still waiting for a review of Lost in Translation (2003), so I can have a lovely ‘chat’ with Col, who I’m sure would like to give back more than 92/96 cents for that piece of…uh…film. 😉

  5. Fred, you might have posted before, but with a different email address, as the system had you down as a first-timer? No worries.

    Anyway, concerning Lost in Translation, I am not sure if I have the guts to go there. I for one did enjoy the film very much (*so* sorry) but, as I have already got Colin’s goat considerably by daring to profess my love of Independence Day (1996) to the world, a review of Sofia Coppola’s masterpiece might be a bridge too far… 😉

    And Jona, you’re certainly making up for lost time since you won your 1,000th Picturenose comment prize, aren’t you? You and Colin appear to be having an intelligent conversation here, so I will not interject, save to thank you for your continuing support of our site, cheers. 🙂

  6. I don’t know about Lost in Translation. I was mostly confused. Independence Day *was* awesome, though. 😀

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