Barb Wire (1996)
Pam's Big Break Broke
I recently watched the Pam and Tommy show on Hulu and I thought it was pretty good. There were definitely some 2020s political/cultural elements shoehorned into what was a very 90s happening, but it was interesting and, such a rarity these days, somewhat unexpected.
One of the plot points of the show was the release of Pam’s movie Barb Wire and how it was going to be the big thing that rocketed her from Baywatch babe to movie star. Needless to say that didn’t happen. The show has a scene were she and Tommy go to a theater and secretly watch the film and everybody is laughing at her and not with her. The movie was widely panned and Baywatch remains her artistic pinnacle.
Anywho, Fight Pizza set out to see if it’s really as bad as all that.
The film opens with lots of Pamela’s tits, which is good and normal, but not what you would expect from her transition to a serious film role. IMDB tells me the opening credits were Pam's idea and how she thought she’d be taken seriously with this Cherry Pie opening makes me question her artistic instincts. Killing the bar patron is slightly subversive, but the jumbo hooters and firehose leave a bigger impression.
There’s a shit ton of exposition in this movie, like David Lynch’s Dune or something, but basically blah blah blah survivors of the second civil war find safety in Steel Harbor and Pam’s got a bar there and she a tough independent chick.
Pam’s got that Batman growl and noir vibes mixed with Tank Girl girl power lines, but Lori Petty sure as shit didn’t have two basketballs attached to her torso. (This movie is really similar to Tank Girl in spirit and tone.)
Guest stars include Udo Kier as the slick bald maitre d and Boba Fett as love interest.
Lots of stuff happens, kind of.
In sum, it’s really not a bad movie and not worthy of massive amounts of scorn. It's got a crappy generic script more or less in line with the genre of 90s action/superhero movies with the added benefit of some fun design and direction. Pam's fine, the lame villain is far worse. The idea from Pam and Tommy that she got bad shake from an evil misogynistic public is confirmed.
Barb Wire is available on Showtime, which also has Bellator and some decent boxing. It’s also cheap as part of a package or with a student Prime account.
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