Wednesday, June 7, 2017

MALIBU HIGH is Not The Sex Comedy You're Looking For (Review)

Director: Irvin Berwick

Cast: Jill Lansing, Stuart Taylor, Katie Johnson

Vinegar Syndrome / All Region / Unrated / 1.85:1 widescreen (1080p) / DTS-HD Mono / 90 minutes

Extras: Group commentary track with: Producer Lawrence Foldes and Actress Tammy Taylor / Video interviews with: Producer Lawrence Foldes, Actress Tammy Taylor and Actor Garth Pillsbury / Q&A from a screening at the New Beverly Cinema w/ Producer Lawrence Foldes, Actress Tammy Taylor & Actor Alex Mann / "Struggle for Israel" (1976) - a short film by Lawrence Foldes / "Grandpa & Marika" (1975) - a short film by Lawrence Foldes / Original theatrical trailer / Production still gallery / Reversible cover artwork

BUY FROM GRINDHOUSE VIDEO

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High school student Kim is having a tough time of things at the moment; she has been dumped by her boyfriend Kevin for a rich girl, her grades are slipping, she has no money and all her mother seems to care about is cleaning and bitching. Kim tells her best friend that the nonsense ends today. So she begins working for Tony the pimp and things start to look good for her; new clothes, new car and good grades (via her sleeping with, then conning her teachers). She then meets a higher class pimp, Lance, who frees her from turning tricks in a beat up old van and that violent scumbag Tony. After getting in deep with Lance, she is manipulated into becoming a mercenary for her new employer and things inevitably go downhill when she is hired for a job she doesn't want to do.


Looking at that cover for Irvin Berwick's Malibu High, you might get the impression (and rightly so) that this movie is one of those light and fun sex comedies from the '80s that we all know and love; but you would be very wrong. This movie is a straight up exploitation film filled with topless high school chicks, teens gone wild and of course, unexpected violence from the badass prostitute-turned-mercenary. You may also think that the very attractive young lady on the front cover is the main character, but you would be incorrect again. That is the main character's boyfriend's new girlfriend. "Why wouldn't they put the main chick on the cover?", you may ask. Well, I would say it's because she wasn't the most attractive chick in the movie. Hell, she's a lot hotter now judging from the recent interview with her on the blu-ray.


I really enjoyed the pacing of Malibu High and the twists and turns that come quickly and often. The basic premise reminded me vaguely of one of my favorite exploitation series, Robert O'Neil's Angel trilogy that started in 1984. High school girl and prostitute who gets mixed up in the violent underworld. There is not much more that tops the exploitation of "young high school girls", their budding sexuality and turning them into killing machines. The movie never gets very explicit in either the sex or violence departments. There are lots of boobs and sexual situations but the boffing scenes consist of lots of topless groping, rolling around and kissing with panties on. The violence mostly comes at the end and it's not much more than an episode of "Hunter" (I heart Stepfanie Kramer). Malibu High is sleazy, well paced and on beautiful high definition blu-ray from Vinegar Syndrome!

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