Monday, December 10, 2012

Tuff Turf (1985)

Synopsis: It’s a Brat Pack version of West Side Story without all the singin’ and the dancin’. [Ok, I stole that line from an episode of Newhart].

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “In the shadows of Hollywood’s bright lights lies the dark and violent underside of Los Angeles – TUFF TURF – the mean streets where Nick Hauser (Paul Mones, ‘Streets of Fire’ and ‘Warriors’) his girlfriend Frankie (Kim Richards, ‘Assault on Precinct 13’) and his gang, the Tuffs, reign supreme. That is, until Morgan Hiller (James Spader, ‘Endless Love’) moves to town.”

What Did I Learn?: Mystery solved: It was Robert Downey Jr. who let the dogs out!!

Really?: 1) I’m pretty sure the film’s all-white street gang(!) would last about 15 seconds in any confrontation with actual criminals. 2) The movie’s action sequences, such as the gang stealing Spader’s bike in the school parking lot, or Kim Richards jumping from table to table and doing cartwheels in a nightclub, are so terribly timed and choreographed they defy description. 3) Not that many teens would hit on the girlfriend of the local gang leader, let along foil a mugging.

Rating: Tuff Turf is a cheesy, nearly forgotten teen exploitation flick featuring pre-LessThan Zero performances from Spader and Downey. While Kim Richards is fun to watch (especially when she’s oozing sexuality on the dance floor), the script is atrocious, and the film consists of terrible scene after terrible scene. Tuff Turf is a Tough Turd to appreciate. 4.5/10 stars.

Would it Work For a BAD MOVIE NIGHT?: My guests howled with laughter last Saturday night, so most definitely yes.

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