Assault of the Killer Bimbos (1988)
By: Paul Ryan on July 26, 2010  | 
[dvd]Big Sky Video | All Regions, NTSC | 4:3 | English DD 2.0 | 80 minutes [/dvd] (Full Specs)
The Movie
Cover Art
Director: Anita Rosenberg
Starring: Elizabeth Kaitan, Christina Whitaker, Tammara Souza, Nick Cassavettes
Screenplay: Ted Nicolau.
Country: USA
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Peaches (Christina Whitaker) and Lulu (Elizabeth Kaitan) work in a dingy Go-Go club, the former as the star dancer, the latter as a barmaid. When one of the dancers fails to show up, the klutzy, doe-eyed Lulu is given her chance to show her skills on the stage… with dismal results. Lulu is promptly fired by her boss, the aptly-named Shifty Joe (David Marsh), and when Peaches comes to her defence, she too gets the sack. But just as they are about to leave, their boss is murdered by mob enforcer Big Vinnie (Mike Muscat), and they find themselves wanted for the crime. High-tailing it to Mexico, the pair, dubbed "the killer bimbos" by the press, stop off at a diner, whereupon Peaches "liberates" (or more accurately, kidnaps) put-upon waitress Darlene (Tammara Souza), resulting in even more cops on their tail. As these "bimbos" - an epithet which regularly sends Peaches into paroxysms of outrage - continue to evade the authorities, the trio regularly cross paths with three surfer bums (Nick Cassavettes, Griffin O'Neal and Sammie Bozian) who take a liking to them. But gee, what are the odds that they'll also run into Big Vinnie again, eh?

Not as much fun as the title would suggest, Assault of the Killer Bimbos doesn't really knows what it wants to be. Awkwardly straddling a line between conventional schlock and something a bit more, the film lacks a badly-needed sense of the outrageous. Despite some periodic nudity (from the lovely Elizabeth Kaitan), the odd bit of violence and one effective moment of stoner humour - dig that giant bong – there's nothing risky, shocking or clever on offer here. With its tacky colour schemes, loud outfits and tinny pop score, you get the feeling that director Anita Rosenberg watched a lot of John Waters films, but only took away the most superficial details. In fact, it is hard not to watch Assault of the Killer Bimbos and think of all the ways John Waters himself would have made it work. For one thing, the word "bimbo" sure wouldn't be the "the most goddamn degrading thing you can call a woman", as it is here.

By and large, the acting is all over the shop, with only scream-queen Kaitan (a better-trained actress than her CV – including Roller Blade Warriors: Taken by Force and Vice Academy 3 through 6 would suggest) really getting the right tone of the piece. She's sweet, adorable and funny, in stark contrast to her wooden co-leads. Familiar faces Nick Cassavettes (now a director of the likes of The Notebook and Alpha Dog) and Griffin O'Neal (reteaming with Cassavettes following The Wraith) are pretty forgettable as two of the three surfer dudes, while everyone else is either over-the-top or utterly amateurish.

The involvement of a female director (Anita Rosenberg, co-writer of 1986 comedy Modern Girls) and the script's token diatribes against chauvinistic men might lead some to read some kind subversive feminist politics into what is essentially a schlock film, but this would be giving it entirely too much credit. This is merely a dated, forgettable B-grade comedy, designed to take up shelf space in your local video store and not much else.

Trivia note: The poster for Assault of the Killer Bimbos was designed by a young Greg Kinnear, who worked in marketing for Empire Pictures at the time. That's still a more respectable credit than Baby Mama
For those of you who've spent years waiting for a pristine, 4K-scanned, original negative restoration of Assault of the Killer Bimbos, you'll have to keep waiting. Forever. Still, this 4:3 transfer isn't too shabby. It's certainly soft, but not distractingly so. Occasional print nicks and scratches are apparent.
The 2.0 audio is better than you'd expect from a 22-year-old B-movie. It's generally clear and contains some good stereo effects.
Extra Features
Just a lone trailer, albeit one with more verve than the film itself. Video quality is sub-VHS level.
The Verdict
Movie Score
Disc Score
Overall Score
You watch a movie like this thinking of all the ways it could have been better. In more adventurous hands, Assault of the Killer Bimbos could have been a campy, over-the-top riot. Instead it is flat, uncertain in its tone and unevenly-performed. Unless you're an Elizabeth Kaitan or Eddie Deezen completist, there's nothing to get excited about here.

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