May 22, 2018 Fags in the Fast Lane (Movie Review)
Well, Writer/Producer/Designer/Director Josh ‘Sinbad’ Collins (The Perv Parade 1995, Pervirella 1997) is known as the ‘trashploitation wunderkind.’ So, if the title Fags in the Fast Lane may sound edgy, it is not malicious. It is just aiming lower than lowbrow. In fact, it is aiming to join 1972’s Pink Angels and 1981’s Zorro The Gay Blade in B-movie Queerploitation goodness. It promises to be depraved, deranged, and backed by the raunchiest Rock-n-Roll Zombie Zoo Productions could get. Collins described it as being “like the bastard love child of Priscilla Queen of the Desert and The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” He also described it as being “a road trip to disco Armageddon if John Waters and Tarantino were sharing the driving!”
So, if it falls short of being a crazy, camp, cult classic, then it is back to the storyboard. Not that there is much worry about that, as it has earned some plaudits. Collins & Zombie Zoo Productions are certainly proud of it, as the DVD will be released on Friday, June 1, 2018 with a bundle of extras. There are the usual commentaries and trailers, but there are also music videos, featurettes, a fold-out poster, cartoons and (for the collector’s edition) a bumper sticker.
The plot is simple enough. The setting is Dullsville, Australia. Whenever something awry occurs, Sir Beauregard ‘The Cockslinger’ (Chris Asimos: Italian Spiderman 2007, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries series) is there to set it right. Things get close to home when a roving burlesque gang burgle the bordello of his mother Kitten (Kitten Natividad: Russ Meyer’s Up! 1976, Beneath the Valley of the Ultra Vixens 1979). It is up to him and his own gang to chase them down and make them pay. Will swift, saucy justice be done? Is it worth checking out either way?
Criticizing its technical quality seems superfluous in a way. It was going for cheap, and it succeeded. The lighting is rather hard, and the camera quality is bog-standard. It has clear editing, and its spots of animation are simple yet crisp. Mathieson was certainly right about the pop-art, ’60s, Benny Hill mix, particularly when the action reaches a club called The Bang Galore. So, for a cheap film, its design – technically and artistically – is more solid than a good chunk of its rivals. Though the sound design could have been better, as the vocals during some musical performances are a touch too quiet. Hijra the Eunuch (King Khan of King Khan & the Tandoori Knights) can only just be heard above the instrumental score during his big song.
In turn, the acting ranges from corny to cheesy, just as intended. Unless Collins had wanted the cast to utilise the Method and roam Sydney’s streets to defend the honor of the LGBTQ community. It is more charming as it is, as Asimos is quite an appealing protagonist. He comes off as confident without being too, er, cocky. Also, he is probably the closest thing to a straight man in the film, despite the mutton chops and captain’s hat. As many of the other roles are more ridiculous – be it Khan’s Hijra, the burlesque gang, or B-movie legend Kitten Natividad. Her prime may be past, but some might enjoy her simulated sex scenes inside her Golden GILF’s Pleasure Palace.
As for more conventional action – some of the stunts are likely fake on purpose. Fight scenes consist of scuffles and kicks that sometimes look like they hit. Sex scenes involve non-penetrative dry humping. Blood often looks like strawberry jam, etc. It is all played for laughs. It is all deliberately goofy and crass, and it adds to the film’s charm. Most of the time anyway. Not every joke hit, and the misses can go on a touch too long, but it does hit more than it misses.
Ultimately, it is a cheap film full of crass humor with corny acting, fake action, and even faker miniatures. It all comes together with a consistent and colorful design, clear editing, standard but stable cinematography, and plenty of charm. It is also rather funny, so it works out on that front too. It may be in bad taste, but its light-hearted approach makes it more palatable. If one is up for some bawdy jokes with a kinky twist, Fags in the Fast Lane should have them covered. Thus, CrypticRock gives it 4 out of 5 stars.