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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Teens > Porky's The Ultimate Collection (Fox/DVD-Video)

Porky's The Ultimate Collection (Fox/DVD-Video)



Porky's (1982) - One Size Fits All Edition


Picture: C+   Sound: B-    Extras: B   Film: B-



The raunchiest mainstream movie of its day, the once controversial Porky's seems a lot tamer 25 years later.  And when compared to the relentlessly vulgar gross-out comedies of today (like the current hit Knocked Up), Porky's now seems like harmless fun.  Written and directed by the late Bob Clark (he and his son were killed in April, 2007 by a drunk-driving illegal alien), Porky's was the sleeper hit of 1982, leading to two sequels and creating an entire lowbrow '80s subgenre -- the horny-teenagers-trying-to-get-laid comedy.  Loosely based on Clark's own experiences while attending high school in Ft. Lauderdale in the early-to-mid 1950s, the film itself is essentially a series of naughty, sex-related episodes involving a group of carnal teenagers attending south Florida's Angel Beach High circa 1954.  At school, the fun-loving crew must contend with a fascistic head gym coach named Miss Beulah Balbricker (Nancy Parsons), who's continually outraged by their lascivious antics.  Off school grounds, the Angel Beach gang gets on the wrong side of a corpulent, mean-spirited redneck named Porky (Chuck Mitchell), owner and operator of a notorious nightclub/brothel located in a rural, rival neighboring county.  The funniest vignettes include a scene where the most sex-starved of the group, Pee-Wee (Dan Monahan), gets spotted by the cops while being stranded outdoors naked; a gag involving the name "Mike Hunt"; a shower-room prank interrupted by Miss Balbricker and her subsequent report (which even the principal can't help laughing about); and a cheerleading coach (the always sexy Kim Cattrall) who shows everybody why she's nicknamed "Lassie."  Porky's sure ain't high art, but if accepted at the level of lightweight locker-room humor, it's fun.  The new One Size Fits All edition contains a feature-length audio commentary by Clark; two retrospective featurettes, the theatrical trailer and TV spots.  On the downside, however, the 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer appears to be the same transfer used on Fox's previous DVD edition.  The picture quality looks to be a bit better on Porky's II, but the age again shows on the transfer of Porky's Revenge -- making its DVD debut.



Porky's II: The Next Day (1983)


Picture: B-   Sound: B-   Extras: C-   Film: C-


The Porky's trilogy parallels another lowbrow comedy series set in the American South -- the Smokey and the Bandit trilogy.  In both series, the first one succeeds as mindless fun.  The second one starts out funny before fizzling badly.  And the third one is just plain bad.  In Porky's II, the whole Angel Beach gang is back, but conspicuous by his absence is Porky himself, despite the film still carrying his name.  Here the gang still finds time to battle the humorless Miss Balbricker while taking on a hypocritical, self-righteous preacher and crooked local politicians.  All the funny moments are confined to the first 30 minutes.  Porky's II only did about a third of the business of its highly successful predecessor, and contains only about a third of the laughs.  Even Clark, who returned as co-writer and director, admitted this first sequel was done to make the money for him and his cast that they didn't make on the low-budget first one.



Porky's Revenge (1985)


Picture: C+   Sound: B-   Extras: C-    Film: D


Clark smartly decided to sit this one out completely, leaving the directorial chores to veteran TV producer/director/actor James Komack (Welcome Back, Kotter, The Courtship of Eddie's Father).  Here the Angel Beach gang once again clashes with Porky (unlike Porky's II, at least the title character is in this one), and Miss Balbricker mellows after she's reunited with an old flame.  Repeating the same jokes ad nauseam (like characters getting caught naked in public), Komack and company clearly lacked any fresh ideas in this tiresome rehash.



- Chuck O'Leary


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