Friday, April 28, 2017

MST3K Redux: What Would Women Think Of Angels' Revenge?

When Mike Nelson and his MST3K crew mocked Angels' Revenge, which was Charlie's Angels disguised as The Dirty Dozen, they emphasized the absurdity of these women thinking they can bring down a drug ring through physical means (mainly through their cleavage and fighting in bikinis). They also talked a lot about how familiar faces had to do this movie to keep their flagging careers going, including Alan Hale Jr., Arthur Godfrey, Peter Lawford, and future Oscar winner Jack Palance.

When the Riffing Housewives, Mary Jo Pehl and Bridget Nelson, took this on, they just showed what they think such women would be concerned about while battling the drug dealers. Otherwise, it's a brutal pummeling on an example of "jiggle TV" as a movie. As Mary Jo asks at one point, "Are 90% of all Hollywood movies written by eleven year old boys?" She thinks that's how this movie was made. It's no coincidence all the male actors were in the credits before the women with the bigger roles were mentioned.

The story is about Michelle Wilson, a popular singer who learns her brother was beaten up by a drug pusher who got him hooked. She teams up with April, his teacher, who has a plan to destroy a processing plant outside of Los Angeles. The teacher uses the singer's fame to get the crew she needs, filled with expertise and breasts.
Mary Jo doubts the wisdom of this:  "You need a hit song to call the cops?"
Be grateful Ocean's 8 will have better actresses and writing, but then upset most men will see no difference between that and this movie.

What's interesting about this version is that it includes 15 minutes that was cut by MST for time and maybe dignity. There's a montage of the girls "training," but it's shown in three separate boxes, Once the girls pose in their mostly white jump suits, Bridget asks, "So what are they supposed to do after Labor Day?" For those who don't get that, just Google "wearing white clothes after Labor Day".

Another section that wasn't shown on MST is where Elaine, the cop, reported to her boss (Neville Brand) about the girls. The first scene is OK, but the second featured two of the girls giving him the drugs they seized still wearing bikinis. It's not exactly undercover work, but it's supposed to appeal to the men with eleven-year-old brains who wanted this movie.
Also, remember the scene where the girls bathe in their underwear after they blow up the plant? MST also cut away after that, but Rifftrax revealed the girls were held at gunpoint by some goons until April saves them thanks to a nearby helmet.

Now let's compare riffs. In some cases, the guys are meaner. In others, the girls are

Michelle's rear end is shown from above as she's climbing a ladder
MST:  Hey, you're giving away the plot
RT:  Spanx for the view

April and Keiko approach the drug processing camp
MST:  They're attacking a Klingon language camp
RT:  I didn't know they had auto shop in colonial Williamsburg

April:  "Women can make a difference"
RT:  If properly trained
MST:  The director wrote that so he could get laid

April slams her fist on a table
RT:  Meanwhile, Sally Hansen plots revenge
MST:  We will, like, bury you
(Combine them both, and it's a superior riff)

At a foggy beach, the girls meet one of the drug ring's goons and talks to Terry, an African-American stunt woman:  "Do you play basketball?"
MST:  This is offending one-celled animals
RT:  Sexist, racist, height-ist, AND NOT FUNNY

The girls bathe under a waterfall after blowing up the plant
MST:  And now, ladies and gentlemen, the reason this movie was made
RT:  Behold the waterfall of men's tears

The girls did recycle  two riffs from the original version, Those who saw both know which ones. There were also riffs on Rose Kennedy, La-La Land, Chevy Chase and the J. Geils Band.

You can get Angels Revenge at Rifftrax's website, and volume 2 of MST3K DVD set re-issued by Shout Factory.

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