Sunday, 20 February 2011

Angel (1984)

"Honor student by day - hooker by night!"

This film has been on my most wanted list for the past 8 years. It's almost impossible to track down on VHS. I think EMI distributed this in the UK but i've never seen an original tape and i'd be interested to know if anyone out there has one.

My expectations were set to extremely high and this one didn't disappoint me. I was however amazed at how this film passed certification over here, what with the BBFC going crazy around that exact time, cutting all sorts of films. It's basically the story of a 15 year old schoolgirl who's making money out of prostitution after school to help fund her education.

The film is fantastic on it's own but the supporting cast go a long way to help make it the cult classic that it is today. You have Rory Calhoun playing the ageing ex-western film star who struts around the streets dressed in full cowboy gear, telling stories to anyone that will listen. You also get the killer played by Jon Diehl, he is amazing in this, so creepy. From a 30 second scene where he's sucking on a raw egg, to the head shaving scene where he tries to alter his appearance after the cops have recognised him. He goes down to the bone and blends in with some Hare Krishnas. For me he would have been better off joining an R.E.M. tribute band. The guy doesn't know how to run either!
My favourite supporting member though is Mae (Dick Shawn). I've never laughed so hard at a fight scene in my entire life. From the moment he/she opens the door to the killer at Angel's apartment I was in bits. Door opens; "Who does your hair? Dick face." Killer comes in and then a fight breaks out between the pair. "My luck! I gotta get into a bald headed fight." "About your breath..." It really is a hilarious scene but only for those brief moments, some light relief from an otherwise intense revenge flick. It also boasts a killer score.

If you can get your hands on it it's definitely worth your time and can sit proudly among the other films in it's genre. I think this would make for a great triple bill with The Stepfather and Savage Streets.

"Give a man something to suck on and he's happy."

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