Sunday, July 12, 2015

Roller Blade (Donald G. Jackson, 1986)

Roller skates, big hair, butterfly knives, leotards, portable cassette players, black thongs, neck-gore, skateboard punks, shopping carts and hand puppets. Oh, hi. In case you're wondering, I'm not just listing random things in order to kill time. You won't believe this, but all the stuff I just mentioned actually appears in the amazing Roller Blade at some point or another. Sure, it's lacking a few things here and there (for starters, there are no black silk stockings featured in this film whatsoever), but as far as post-apocalyptic skate-sploitation flicks go, it's pretty much got everything you could ask for and more. It's true, it doesn't quite reach the dizzying heights of Shredder Orpheus when it comes to overall greatness, but it's definitely better than Prayer of the Rollerboys. While it's true, Roller Blade and the films I just mentioned do have a lot in common, I think this particular film, written and directed by Donald G. Jackson (Hell Comes to Frogtown), has got the others beat in terms of sheer insanity. I know, Shredder Orpheus is all kinds of insane. But once you see the outfits worn by Mother Speed and her roller-skating sisters, you'll start to see what I'm getting at.

The only way to describe their outfits is like this: Imagine if the Ku Klux Klan decided to consulate Gucci to remake their signature look.

While it pains me to compare their look to that of the KKK, their outlook is all about peace and understanding. That being said, they will straight-up stab your ass if you as much as look at them funny. But, if they like the cut of your jib, they might just heal your ass. That's right, the sisters can heal people. And they do so by waving their magic butterfly knives over the affected area.

Of course, the haute couture KKK outfits and butterfly knives that heal are just the beginning when it comes to understanding the scope of this film's nuttiness.

As things get underway, I wouldn't chastise you for thinking that this film had a Fred Olen Ray quality about it. Hell, I, too, thought the film reeked of Fred Olen Ray (and believe me, as someone who has seen Evil Toons, that's a stench you do not want to reek of). However, the second Mother Speed (Katina Garner), the leader of The Cosmic Order of Roller Blade, and Marshall Goodman (Jeff Hutchinson), the protector of the Third Harvest of the New Order, open their mouths and start conversing with one another, I knew this wasn't your typical slab of cinematic trash.

As Mother Speed and Marshall Goodman are chatting, Sister Sharon Cross (Suzanne Solari) is writhing in bed. Having a nightmare, one that involves Baby Saticoy dragging her into a vat of acid, Sharon's black thong would dig into her anus with every writhe. How do I know this, you ask? Let's just say I've been watching hot chicks in black thongs writhe for quite some time now.

Anyway, it would seem that in the old days, people skated for fun. But now people either skate or they die. Case in point, Hunter (Shaun Michelle), a freelance bounty hunter, stabs and kills some guy who wasn't wearing skates. Now, would he have lived had he been wearing a pair of roller-skates or riding on a skateboard? Who's to say. All I know is, those who do not skate in this film's universe are easy pickings.

The so-called "Roller Patrol," lead by Marshall Goodman, try to police this unruly wasteland (L.A. during the Second Dark Age), but it's clear to anyone with eye-holes that still sort of work that chaos is calling the shots.

What's that? Who leads chaos? As most of you know, chaos doesn't usually have a leader. But if you were to ask the demented Doctor Saticoy (Robby Taylor), he would probably tell you that he's the one in charge... of chaos.

Since the Roller Patrol are no match for Doctor Saticoy, it's up to the Cosmic Order of Roller Blade to stand up against his unique brand of villainy. Unfortunately, three roller blade sisters are captured by the Samurai Devils, a gang affiliated with Doctor Sacticoy... (Don't forget Baby Saticoy.) Ah, yes. Baby Saticoy. The face of chaos for the majority of the film.

As I was saying, three roller blade sisters are captured by the Samurai Devils. Two of them are forced to wrestle one another, while the third one watches from the discomfort of  a shopping cart. If you thought writhing in bed caused your black thong to press tightly against your anus, you should see what wrestling does... to your anus.

Don't worry, though, Mother Speed launches a rescue mission. And you can almost guarantee that the mission is going to be a success, as it's lead by none other than Sister Sharon, whose butterfly knife swooshes open with a shitload of vigor and at least six tubs worth of moxie.

When word gets out that Doctor Sacticoy wants someone to steal the Cosmic Order of the Roller Blade's magic power crystal and that he's willing to pay a hefty sum for it, Hunter jumps at the chance (after all, her Walkman needs new batteries). In order to infiltrate the cosmic order, Hunter pretends to be a damsel in distress. The plan is to have the sisters think that she wants to join the order, and when they're not looking, nab the magic power crystal. However, things get a tad complicated, when Hunter, who is re-branded as "Sister Fortune," starts to bond with Sister Sharon.

I can't say I blame her. I want to bleed to death all over Sister Sharon's supple hindquarters... let my blood nourish her smooth thighs and tasty buttocks.

Things go from being a tad complicated to extremely complicated when Waco (Sam Mann), a shopping cart pushing bounty hunter (dig the swimming goggles, man), kidnaps Marshall Goodman's son for Doctor Sacticoy. But don't worry, things go back to being a tad complicated when Waco sees Sister Sharon's aforementioned smooth thighs and tasty buttocks. What I mean is, Waco switches sides when he realizes that's there's more to life than ball bearings.

Even though Roller Blade looks like it was made for no money, it still manages to create the sense that this world actually exists. You see, by simply using their surroundings (Sun Valley, California) in an imaginative manner, the producers were able to construct a universe that seemed authentic and totally lived in. It didn't hurt that old-timey second person singular pronouns were added to the dialogue during post-production, and that Michelle Bauer makes a brief appearance as a "Bod Sister."

Smart, funny and profound are three words. And, believe or not, I'm going to use them to sum up my feelings about Roller Blade. And while I'm at it, you can add: Sexy, unique and stupefying. Go forth now and skate the path of righteousness.


  1. not sold on this one it gives me a Vegas in Space vibe

    1. Vegas in Space vibe, eh? I suppose it could worse. I mean, it could have given you a Starrbooty vibe.