What are you doing with those wires, Christopher Atkins, star of The Pirate Movie and The Blue Lagoon? Don't you know you're going to shock Shakma, the simian star of Shakma, if you continue down the path you're currently leading? Okay, now that I got the obligatory "Shock the Monkey" reference out of the way, we can safely move on to less pedestrian ground. At around midway point, the thought, "Wow. This movie sucks," started to rear its scabies-laden head. Struggling to remain interested in this tale of a crazed baboon running amok through the halls of a teaching hospital, I began to get restless. Then I remembered something Ari Meyers tells Christopher Atkins near the beginning of the film. Informing Atkins that she has a surprise in store for him, I thought to myself: I've got to see this surprise. I mean, if I know one thing, it's that Ari Meyers (Kate und Allie) is the master when it comes to surprises. In all honesty, I kind of had an idea what her surprise entailed. Nevertheless, I waded through another forty or so minutes of intense, door humping baboon action in order to see this surprise.
Well, I have to say, not only was her surprise worth the wait, the film as a whole started to improve as well. I'm not kidding, the midway point thought, "Wow. This movie sucks," was soon replaced with, "Wow. This movie is awesome."
Granted, all that business involving drab-looking med students using walkie-talkies ad nauseam while playing some elaborate role-playing game was still kinda lame. ("All that business"? Don't you mean, "all that monkey business"?) But once you see Ari Meyer's surprise, you'll totally forget about that silly game. Of course, if there was no game, there would be no surprise. You see, since the med students are playing a role-playing game that revolves around saving a princess, Kim (Ari Meyers) decides to bring an extra layer of authenticity to the proceedings by dressing as an actual princess.
Not wanting to spoil the surprise, Kim keeps her plan a secret. If you look closely, you can see that Kim is carrying a large bag (a bag that no doubt contains her princess costume) when she enters the hospital. It should be noted, however, that Kim's decision to dress like a princess has nothing to do with authenticity. No, the only thing Kim is interested in is impressing Sam (Christopher Atkins), a blonde yet sensitive med student.
Only problem being, Sam is seeing Tracy (Amanda Wyss), a fellow med student. Well, there are actually two problems. In addition to the fact that Sam and Tracy are an item, there's a killer baboon ripping people's faces off on the fifth floor.
The kooky thing is, only half the characters in this film seem to realize that they're unwitting stars of a deranged baboon movie. In fact, Gary (Robb Edward Morris), "the black guy," doesn't find out that he's in a deranged baboon movie until the hour mark.
Anyway, when I saw Ari Meyers practicing crossing and uncrossing her legs in her princess outfit in the teacher's lounge, I immediately began to map out the long-winded spiel I intended unleash in its honour. But like I sort of implied earlier, while Ari Meyer's surprise princess get-up is the reason this review exists, the movie itself managed to slowly win me over.
The top-notch performance by the Chacma baboon at the center of this ape-tastic tale and the many despondent looks Christopher Atkins sports after discovering a mauled friend lying in a pool of their own blood were two of the main non-Ari Meyers dressed as a princess-related reasons this film gets my stamp of approval.
And, yes, you heard right. I called the baboon's performance "top-notch." What other expression would you use to describe the simian acting in this movie? There's no simple way around it, this is one talented cercopithecinae. Whether he's smashing violently against a locked door or smashing violently... against a locked door, it wouldn't surprise me if the baboon's fierce, go for broke attitude caused a number of people in the audience to expel a smallish amount of urine from their primary pee-holes.
Personally, I just sat there with mouth agape (my primary pee-hole was as dry as the Mojave desert), as I watched the baboon try to break down yet another locked door.
Okay, now that I got the prerequisite baboon door crashing talk out of the way. Let's get back to discussing Ari Meyers' princess outfit.
When we first meet Ari Meyers' Kim, she's dressed like your typical square dance attendee. Wearing a dress that goes all the way down to the floor(!), Kim, despite her conservative wardrobe, seems excited to play the princess in "The Game," a Dungeons and Dragons-style game that involves finding keys and solving puzzles.
Unfortunately, Kim's brother, Richard (Greg Flowers) must have overheard her talking about "The Game," because he manages to weasel his way into being a part of the fun. Seeing this as a way to ingratiate himself with Sorenson (Roddy McDowell), the lead doctor/animal torturer/'game master" at this particular teaching hospital/research center/polytechnic, Richard forgoes a night that is guaranteed to be filled with copious amounts of heterosexual intercourse to play this stupid game.
All right, maybe "copious" is pushing it, but it's clear that Laura (Ann Kymberlie), Richard's girlfriend, wants to fuck him pretty badly. The look on her face when she finds out the reason her pussy isn't going to be repeatedly stuffed with Richard's cock is because of some game is classic.
She's probably thinking to herself: The walls of my vagina are as smooth as expired creamed corn, yet you want to hang out with your frumpy sister and a bunch of dorks. Be my guest. *cough* Loser! *cough*
Enough about Laura's velvety box. Even though we get a couple of brief glimpses of Kim's princess outfit at around the midway point (the first comes near the forty minute mark), that doesn't diminish the impact of the scene where Sam gets his first look at Kim dressed as a princess. Sadly, it would seem that Sam is in no mood to compliment her, or even unfurl a half-chub, for that matter. If anything, Sam seems annoyed.
Sure, he's been busy watching his friends get killed one by one by a door-hating baboon, but would it kill you to at least tell Kim that she looks nice. Jeez.
Let's see if I covered everything. Ari Meyers looks amazing as a princess. The Baboon doesn't like doors. Laura has an agreeable vagina. Excessive walkie talkie usage. Black guy doesn't realize he's in a psychotic baboon movie for a solid hour. Uh... Did I mention that Amanda Wyss brings nothing to the table, wardrobe-wise? I didn't. Well, she doesn't. I mean, c'mon, Amanda, give me something to work with here. I'm not saying you have to dress like a princess. But the least you could have done was put on a jean skirt. Gawd. Other than forgetting to scold Amanda Wyss's wardrobe, I think that pretty much covers it.