At first I was comfortably prepared to declare that the three actresses who appear in Boardinghouse are wearing the same pair silky smooth black satin disco pants. But as of right this minute, I'm not so sure. Why? It's simple, really. Unless director/star John Wintergate is a master when it comes to employing camera tricks, I doubt they would be able to make it appear as if two women were wearing the same pair of silky smooth black satin disco pants in the same scene (I doubt he even knows how to turn on a camera). No, what I think happened was, each of the three actresses who appear in silky smooth black satin disco pants decided to wear their own silky smooth black satin disco pants to the set, and no one batted an eye over the fact this flagrant display of trouser-based uniformity might cause a certain someone to lose an uncertain amount of shit some thirty-plus years later. What I think I'm trying to say is this: I want a pair of silky smooth black satin disco pants. Granted, I'm currently working on attaining the curves necessary to wear such a garment. But mark my words, my soon to be shapely butt will be housed in a pair of silky smooth black satin disco pants in the not-so distant future. Oh, you better believe it. (Um, hello? I'm sorry to keep asking this... But what on Earth are you babbling about?) Um, I'm clearly talking about silky smooth black... (Yeah, I got that. But why are you talking about them in a review for a shot on video horror classic?) Um, it's what I do. I watch a movie. Then after it's over, I type words pertaining to said movie. Duh.
And sometimes, if I'm feeling extra saucy, I like to describe the position the movie caused me sit as I watched said movie. And Boardinghouse had me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Though, to be honest, the reason I was sitting on the edge of my seat had nothing to do with the film's overall intensity, it was mostly upholstery-related. You see, the chair I was sitting on was poorly upholstered. Unable to provide me and my not yet shapely butt with the support I/it needed, I started to favour the outskirts (or the edge, if you will) of the tumbledown piece of furniture. Thus, creating the illusion that the film was scaring some but not all of the bejesus out of me.
In reality, the film, which, like I said, was shot on video, mostly confused and bewildered me. However, I'm not one to let confusion, or even bewilderment for that matter, ruin what is essentially an on the cusp of being watchable hot chicks in a haunted house picture.
If you're like me, and you have a soft spot for films that feature attractive women doing asinine nonsense pool-side in the early 1980s, Boardinghouse will deliver in that regard.
While most viewers will look at the seemingly-unending gaggle of semi-elegant ladies who end up at the boardinghouse at the centre of this cinematic mind-scrambler, and think to themselves: I would love to engage in state-sanctioned sexual intercourse with one or more of these women. I, on the other hand, simply want to possess their physical characteristics.
Oh, to be ensconced in the soft, flow-y glow-y mire of womanhood. Ensconced in womanhood. Ensconced. Womanhood. Mmmmm. Hey, would you look at that, the wind is causing my robuster than usual ponytail to sway to and fro like a pendulum.
(Hey, snap out of it.) What? Sorry 'bout that. I must have drifted off or something.
So, yeah, Boardinghouse is about this super-lean, mildly douchey guy named Jim (John Wintergate) who inherits the Hoffman house, a large residence on Mulholland Dr. with a dark past (many people have died mysteriously there over the past ten years).
Deciding to rent it out almost exclusively to hot young women, Jim goes back to astral projecting in his downtown office. No, wait... Jim has chosen to live with his tenants. At first I thought this was odd, as landlords don't usually live with their tenants. But judging by his pronounced pantie bugle, I'd say Jim's penis has somehow persuaded Jim proper to take advantage of the situation.
When the women do arrive and start moving in, a wave of relief washed over me. You know, because I want to be ensconced... (Yeah, yeah, ensconced in womanhood... we get it.) Even though it was difficult to tell at first, I'd say around six or seven move in.
If there's one thing I don't like about these types of movies, it's that they don't make it easy for us to distinguish one hot chick from another. Sure, having one "black chick" and one "Asian chick" made it somewhat easy. But still, I have to wade through three brunettes and a shitload of blondes. I know, life is hard.
A latecomer named Debbie (Lindsay Freeman), an English blonde, shows up and eventually gets a room. Things seem pleasant enough at first (nothing but non-stop pool parties and pie fights). But that all changes when a forthright brunette named Victoria (Kalassu... you heard me, I said, Kalassu) starts having weird visions. In fact, most of the women start having weird visions. But Victoria's weird visions seemed extra... weird. And I think it has something to do with the fact that she has recently taken an interest in astral projection (she checks out a ton of books on the subject at the library). Which, of course, she picked up from Jim (she watches Jim move a bar of soap with his mind while taking a bath).
In order to protect the squeamish, director John Wintergate has devised a method to shield easily triggered audience members from harm. And he does this by flashing a warning (the image of a black leather glove) accompanied by a synth flourish.
Let's be honest. The warnings, apparently titled, "Horror Vision," were kinda unwarranted. I mean, other than some spewing fake guts and some self-induced eyeball popping, the gore in this movie is pretty tame. But then again, I'm sucker for synth flourishes. So, yeah, it's got that going for it.
Don't let gore-hounds or shot on video aficionados fool you, Boardinghouse is all about hot babes under duress in a domestic setting. Some wear silky smooth black satin disco pants, some wear short shorts (which were just called shorts back then), some wear studded bracelets... Actually, some wear silky smooth black satin disco pants and studded bracelets. I know, talk about your win-win.
Anyway, if you're like me and want to be surrounded by as many women as humanly possible at all times, you can't do better than Boardinghouse. (Are you sure about that?) Not really.
This review, by the way, is a review of the 98 min theatrical cut. There's a "rare" 157 min on the second disc that comes with the 2013 Slasher // Video release of this film. Surrounded by women or not, I don't think I have the stamina to make through a 157 minute version of this movie. I'm sort of curious... Nah, I better not. My brain cells need a break.