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The 100




Lifeforce
(1985)
Reviewed by Russell Tharp
Rating: 3 Beans

here was no way I could write reviews for Bad Movie Night without eventually getting to this one. Of all the movies featuring Bareass-nekkid Space Vampire Girls laying waste to the entire city of London, "Lifeforce" is my absolute favorite. It has everything you could ask for: horrific overacting from Steve Railsback and Patrick Stewart, folks turned into giant beef jerkies, a hokey explanation of all vampire lore since the dawn of recorded history, the threat that London will have to be nuked, and a shapely female star who spends 99.8% of her screen time in glorious full-frontal nudity. If you want more than this from a film, I'm not sure where you'll find it.

Let me try to explain the plot. A space shuttle mission to Halley's Comet encounters an alien ship within the comet's tail. Shuttle commander Railsback leads an away team into the alien craft and finds it loaded with mummified bat creatures...and three nude humans in big glass coffins. Railsback gets all cross-eyed and goofy over the female (Mathilda May), and next thing we know we're watching the shuttle Columbia launch to rendezvous with the first shuttle, which is drifting back to earth unmanned. Columbia's crew brings the three folks in their glass coffins back to earth, and soon enough the Bareass-nekkid Space Vampire Girl french-kisses a security guard to death and wanders away into the city. The two male Space Vampires wake up and are promptly grenaded into bite-sized chunks. Two hours later, the security guard, who resembles a leather chew-toy, comes back to life and soul-kisses a pathologist, turning him into a giant, scrub-wearing Slim Jim. At this point, in one of the script's funniest unintentionally funny lines, another guard is ordered to "gather up the pieces of the two aliens...and WATCH THEM."

Railsback turns up in an escape pod, and starts twitching and mumbling about how he's in some sort of psychic contact with the Bareass-nekkid Space Vampire Girl (BSVG, for short). He allows himself to be hypnotized by Dr. Fallada (Frank Finlay), an expert in some ill-defined specialty about death, and tells the British authorities that the BSVG has changed bodies and is now inside a nurse and preparing to suck face with a dumpy guy in a Volvo. Our intrepid Fearless Nekkid-Vampire Hunters head out to find her and end up at a hospital for criminally hammy actors, where they must subdue Patrick Stewart before he starts crying about how much he hates the Borg. Railsback screams at Picard like a moron until some swirly special effects throw a bookcase at the wormiest Nekkid-Vampire Hunter, named Sir Percy (Aubrey Morris), killing him early and sparing us all a lot of needless suffering.

There's a pretty nifty scene on the helicopter ride back to London, where all the food coloring in the bodies of Picard and Wormy Guy drains out of their eyes, nose, and mouth and pools in the air forming a bust (no pun intended) of the BSVG. But it turns out they can't go to London because it's been quarantined. Apparently the BSVG has left a few other freeze dried kiss casualties laying around the city, and they in turn have been just kissing the hell out of everybody, until it looks like pretty much the entire populace of London has been given mass infusions of zombie-Viagra and they're all running in the streets smooching the lifeforce out of each other, while big blue-green balls of special effects fly through the air blowing up buildings and whatnot.

Dr. Fallada informs our Fearless Nekkid-Vampire Hunters that these particular vampires have visited earth before, and are the source of all vampire legends. He also tells them that the way to kill the BSVG is with a leaded spike--not through the heart, perish the thought--but through the "energy center" a tad beneath the heart. He fortunately happens to have a fancy sword designed for just that purpose, which Secret Agent Man eventually picks up.

The whole plot is eventually wrapped up in the climactic showdown in an old church where the BSVG has been channeling all the captured "lifeforce" from the London citizenry up to her spaceship. It should come as no surprise that the showdown consists mainly of the BSVG standing naked while Railsback paws her like she was a White house intern. He tries like hell to insert his spike into her energy center, until he realizes he's aiming too low and with the wrong spike. Secret Agent Man shows up with the sword and all is well. The End.

Mathilda May should have been nominated for Best Actress for her performance. She has the most emotive breasts I've seen since Bo Derek in "Bolero." I laughed with her breasts, cried with them, shared their triumphs and their tragedies. They were truly Oscar-caliber hooters. And, if I may be allowed a fairly tasteless line of speculation, I couldn't help but notice how...um...bushy Mathilda May was at certain times in the film. So I wonder, in films with full-frontal nudity that expect to keep an R rating, do the actresses wear pubic wigs to guarantee that no actual naughty bits are revealed onscreen? She spent the whole movie wandering around with her greatest assets exposed to the world, but the male Space Vampires were always shot in such a way as to cover their genitals, a la "Austin Powers." Would a penis or a brief glimpse of actual female genitalia have given the film an X rating, since there was no NC-17 at the time? Not that I was wearing out my pause button looking for that brief glimpse...

So, is "Lifeforce" a total piece of crap? Of course it is. But damn it's fun.






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