Reviewed by Diane Squires
Rating: 5.5 Beans
ell, it's a sad commentary on the state of films today when the disasterpieces of my childhood start looking good in comparison. Case in point: Vibes, starring Jeff Goldblum and Cyndi Lauper (the girl with the hair who wanted to just have fun). This movie is bad. I know it's bad, you know it's bad, people who spent the last two decades on Mars hiding in caves with their fingers in their ears know that it's bad... However, when you compare it with Battlefield Earth, it starts looking pretty good.
Jeff and Cyndi are cast as psychics. He plays the classy, intellectual one who works at a museum, and she plays the one with the lowerclass accent who is putting herself through beauty school and dresses like a hooker. It would have been a more interesting movie if Jeff had been the trashy hooker-ish one, but frankly I don't think that was an option for the producers of this movie. Cyndi's entire range is limited to playing a person with a brooklyn accent and an ugly wardrobe.
For reasons that make only a limited amount of sense, Peter Falk hires Cyndi and Jeff to go with him to South America and seek out... um... something or other. It's this ancient um... thingie, and everyone who touches it gets all wacky, and I'm a little unclear on why it's such a good thing to go and find. Seriously, I watched the movie and I still don't know. Maybe I blocked it out.
This isn't really an adventure movie, it's more of a comedy about a couple of zany psychics in Peru plus Peter Falk. They kinda get chased by bad guys in between the episodes of hilarity. For example, they go to a swanky hotel and Jeff pretends to be Cyndi's wierdo brother. Cyndi does some wild dance with some guy. Ooooooh the wackiness. Oooooo the giggles and tricks and japes. Are you laughing yet? well, I'm glad someone is, cause I sure as hell wasn't.
Now, if you don't know how the movie ends... oh come on, how can you not know? Of course Cyndi ends up with Jeff! So what if he's a semi-normal guy with a day job and she's a loser magnet in a tube top? This is a movie, and we all know that the auto-plot-script-generat-a-tron that writes ALL of Hollywood's movies is programmed to write a happy ending, where these two fall in love, defeat the bad guys and live happily after in the land of closing credits.
By the way, Cyndi's psychic talent is that she talks to this ghost who pretty much tells her all the answers, so she isn't really psychic, she just found the perfect scam partner. Anyway, in the course of the stuff with the thing and the psychic and the energy and all that during the climax of the feelm, her ghost decides to take a hike into the light. So now Cyndi is just some freak, without any psychic powers... but hold on, here's the ghost of Peter Falk to turn her back into a psychic again and... am I the only who thinks this is a little sick? I mean, Peter Falk's ghost hanging out, looking on at Cyndi and Jeff in their intimate moments? I mean...
What kind of twisted bastard would put Peter Falk through that???? It's just pure sadism for sadism's sake and around here, we don't tolerate that crap! Six beans for being crummy eighties flick, minus one for being less sucky than Battlefield Earth, plus .5 for torturing Peter Falk after he's dead. That's grand total of 5.5 beans and it deserves every one of 'em!
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