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The Strange Things Boutique




DVD region 2. Arrow Films

VampSick of life in their dorm at college, best friends A.J (Robert Rusler) and Keith (Chris Makepeace) attempt to join a frat house; bored with the knuckle headed initiation ceremony, they cut the crap, and tell the frat house members they will supply them with a stripper for an upcoming party. Problem is they have little money and no car, a problem they soon solve by enrolling rich nerd Duncan (Gedde Watanabe) to use his car - but only on the condition that they pretend to be his friends for a week.

They head off to New York in search of The After Dark Club and soon find themselves on the wrong side of town in a dive of a strip joint peopled by losers and vampires!

Rusler (Weird Science, Nightmare On Elm St 2) and Makpeace ( Meatballs, My Bodyguard) make for a good double act and Watanabe (Sixteen Candles) is funny as the nerd who has to buy his friends. DeDee Pfieffer fares less well as the romantic lead but is kooky without being too annoying, and of the supporting cast Sandy Baron really stands out as the After Dark's owner who tries to bring a bit of class to the dive by putting umbrellas in the drinks! Grace Jones does a very weird strip act which isn’t very erotic and has no lines at all, doing a lot of snarling and staring instead of talking.

I first caught this 1986 movie in the late Eighties / early Nineties on the BBC’s Moviedrome and it was great to see it again. Very much of it’s time, with a synthy soundtrack and bright green and pink lighting abundant in every scene it’s a fun 90 minutes that comes across as a Brat Pack horror movie with a nice streak of black comedy.

Arrow’s new two disc set is an improvement picture wise over the old Anchor Bay US disc and features some interesting extras - Disc One has the feature with an intro and commentary by Robert Rusler, along with the trailer, while Disc Two has interviews with DeDee Pfieffer, director Richard Wenk and producer Donald P. Borchers, as well as a featurette with director Wenk on his collection of Vamp memorabilia. Rounding out the set are a blooper reel, rehearsal footage and Wenk’s 1979 short film Dracula Bites The Big Apple that lead to him being hired to do Vamp.

Once again Arrow comes up trumps and delivers another cult movie packed with extras that are worth your hard earned. Keep up the good work!





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