Thursday, November 15, 2012

Land of Doom (1986)

Directed by Peter Maris
Starring Deborah Rennard, Garrick Dowhen, Daniel Radell

“You creep! You creep!!” 

It's the end of the world. How'd it end? Who knows and who cares? That's what our heroine/narrator says at the beginning. So, ok. All that's left are pockets of civilization out in the desert, but they are being slowly-but-surely decimated by the “Raiders”, a group of half-assed, mostly middle-aged slobs in leather pants who drive around on “armored” motorcycles. Only the armor is cardboard spray-painted silver. Anyway, as the film opens, the Raiders are raping (clothes on) and pillaging yet another village. The only survivor is Harmony (Deborah Rennard), a plucky bleached-blonde in a baggy surfari suit. Given the outfit and her lack of eyeshadow, one would  assume that there'll be a “makeover” segment at some point, where she emerges with a face full of makeup and maybe a black leather bikini. That's how these post-apoc things always play out, right? As the 'story' wears on – she teams up with a wisecracking mercenary and a puppy-loving lute player, fight French/southern redneck cannibals, gets kidnapped by the Raiders, some Jawas show up with a flamethrower, etc – you keep expecting the goddamn sexy makeover to happen. That's the only thing that keeps you going, because everything else sucks. The pop-disco soundtrack is lousy, there's no gore or nudity, the dialogue is witless, there's just no GOOD PARTS. But at least she'll look super-hot at some point, right? Then all this will be worth it. Meanwhile, you start feeling bad for everyone involved. It strikes you that these are all full-grown ADULTS involved in this childish nonsense, and you think about all the wasted time, money, and resources that went in to this Z-grade, no-budget Road Warrior rip-off, and it really starts to bum you out. But hey, it's 1986, so she's gonna put on blue eye shadow and do a sexy Amazon dance any minute now, right?

Well, spoiler alert: SHE NEVER DOES.

If you're thinking of watching this – it's currently streaming on Netflix, so I can see how you might be tempted – honestly, don't. Anything would be more entertaining. Read the phonebook, watch some paint dry, go sit at the doctor's office and read three year old issues of People magazine. Those would all be more fun than watching this was.

Land of Doom? More like Land of Dumb, amiright, people?

- Ken McIntyre

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