“Nam was hell….Prison unbearable….But coming home
Entire Story in Fewer Words than are in this Sentence:
The bigger the teeth, the mightier the cock.
Things are off to a flying start as the first image we see is a man getting dressed. Quick cut to another man zipping his trousers. Before you know it, we’re staring right at Gary Busey’s chest; not very hairy, but pretty well-oiled for a man about to leave prison. Busey is Buck Matthews, which might as well be Throbby McTool for all the subtlety it possesses. His main enemy in the film is a brutal biker who resembles Mr. Clean, although rather than being completely bald, he maintains a coonskin cap type thing on the back 1/3 of his skull. Whatever it is, it’s extremely unflattering. And gay. The biker has a Bennett-style moustache as well, and is constantly screaming to go “one-on-one” with Buck. And did I mention that Clean’s gang dress in green pantsuits and wear chain-mail vests? Well, at least that dude who looked like John Matusak did. But Clean is a sensitive sort, especially when he gently weeps at the scene of his friend’s gruesome death. Clean also presides over a massive compound where, in longshot, we can see numerous bikers showering together. As for Buck, he’s bitch-slapped by a sheriff (and likes it), and in an 80s Action classic, takes a stick of dynamite, smears it with Vaseline, and shoves it up the ass of a biker punk in order to get information. Clean and Buck, needless to say, meet in a climactic battle, and their grunts and groans prove both deafening and cock-stiffingly good.
I sure as shit didn’t expect this – 31 sons-a-bitches take a dirt nap during the course of this low-budget effort. Busey kills most of them himself, but Yaphet Kotto is also on hand to dispatch with a few bastards as well. And did I mention that the final battle resembled Normandy in its madness and destruction?
How bad is it really?
The plot is standard Death Wish junk: a man is released from prison, which angers a local biker gang, who then rape a nurse, kill his wife, kidnap his daughter, and die in the desert like dogs. Only instead of Bronson’s wooden Indian approach, we get Gary Busey’s coked-up, surfer dude look. But I’m getting ahead of myself – this film actually begins with the Survivor tune already made famous by Rocky III! Imagine the arrogance! Busey’s wife is killed when the bikers crash through the windows and ride through the living room, overturning couches and – the animals – throwing salsa on the walls. They’re pissed, of course, because Busey stepped in to prevent a rape. Such things will not stand! To make matters worse, after Buck’s wife is dead and buried, she is dug up – casket and all – dragged behind a motorcycle, and deposited in Buck’s driveway. And things get truly silly when Buck lassoes a biker while standing in the back of a speeding truck! The guy he nabs is the same one he later ass-fucks with dynamite. Still, I’m not sure the movie needed Kotto in a WWI-era bi-plane, scarf and all, dropping grenades on the biker hideaway while James Brown screeched on the soundtrack. Perhaps it did.
Only Kotto’s, “I love it! I fucking love it,” after bombing the shit out of the biker drug labs and shower facilities. Pretty dull.
Stupid Political Content:
Typically for the Reagan era, this is a paranoid fantasy about the breakdown of law and order and the rise of hyper-masculine vigilantes to scrape the scum off the streets. In other words, because the government will always fail you, it’s best to load up and lay waste to those who threaten hearth and home. As always, citizens have been weakened by years of Great Society liberalism, so they naively trust crooked sheriffs and swishy social workers. There you go again. Leave it instead to hardened ex-cons who love Jesus, fuck their wives, and have a hard-on for Old Glory. It also helps if the bad guys are drug dealers, so you can see what assorted non-whites are doing to our babies! Buck is also a Vietnam vet, and like Rambo, he just wants to live peacefully, only the Mondale-loving Commies won’t leave him be! Because these un-American assholes instinctively hate those who fought and bled for Uncle Sam, they must be slaughtered and sent to the devil. As a way to drive the point home, the bikers go out of their way to smash Buck’s case containing war medals; that is before they go crazy with the salsa. Buck also gives a passionate pro-vengeance speech in a bingo hall, although its Christ-like message of murder en masse is foolishly ignored.
Busey gets clever and stretches a wire across a darkened street, just as bikers are riding by. Gloriously, one of the dirtbags is decapitated. The helmet containing the head flies through the air, while the mannequin-like body rides on. Buck also kills four bikers with a booby-trapped love doll. Clever man, that Buck.
What You Learned:
When the gays come for your children, they’ll be riding Harleys. And when you lose a loved one, murdering a small town will bring closure.