Film Reviews

Joe Bob Briggs

Is it my imagination, or are there a whole lot of little kids gettin' medicated every day?

I hear about this drug Ritalin all the time.
"Yeah, my kid's on Ritalin. He was so hyperactive we had to give it to him to calm him down."

And you go: "Wow! You mean your kid is taking some kind of Kiddie Prozac? You've got him on pills?"

"Sure. He was wild. He was crazy. He was climbing the walls. Then we found this shrink who recognized the symptoms. He had some kind of hyperactive attention-deficit syndrome."

But here's the scary part. You ask 'em what exactly their kid was doing that was crazy, and it's all the same things I did for years--I just didn't know I was crazy.

Stuff like:
Won't pay attention to the teacher. Won't wait his turn in line. Fidgets all the time. Yells too loud. Runs up and down the hallways. Loses his lunch box. Never finishes his homework. Fights in the playground. Always talking in class when he's supposed to be quiet. Won't go to bed at night.

And so you listen to this list of stuff, and you wanna say, "Sounds like you've got what's known as a little boy!"

When I was a kid, 90 percent of the boys in my school would've qualified for Ritalin.

Parents go really nuts if their kid fights a lot.
When I was growing up out in far West Texas, we used to have nine, 10 fights on the playground a day. We had close friends who fought on a regular basis.

I had to get my braces rewired three times due to various scuffles. Sure, we'd get in trouble--with parents, with teachers, with the Babtist Sunday-school teacher. But nobody thought we were crazy. Nobody wanted to give us drugs.

And all that other stuff--like forgetting your homework and roughhousin' on the living room furniture and yelling in the backseat of the car--was just considered being male.

It generally didn't get us anything more than a swat on the pants.
Maybe if I'd been on Ritalin all those years I'd be more obedient and respectful today.

Speaking of raging testosterone, it's time once again for a women-in-prison flick.

You've heard of Caged Heat. Now we've got Caged Hearts, starring Carrie Genzel and Tane McClure as two starving actresses who kill a drunk ex-boyfriend and end up in the Bimbo Big House, where they are beaten, abused, strip-searched, gang-tackled by lesbos and finally sent to "The Hotel," which is, of course, a secret mansion where beautiful inmates are used as prostitutes by the evil male judges and attorneys.

This is one of your better women-in-cages efforts, thanks to director Henri Charr, who also made Under Lock and Key.

Charr seems to be making a career out of this stuff. (He also seems to be recruiting actresses out of topless bars, judging by some of the silicone action we've got going here.)

Henri always obeys the Golden Ratio of 85-to-5:
Eighty-five minutes of helpless female inmates being tortured, enslaved and hosed down.

Five minutes of female inmates rising up against their male oppressors, escaping and striking a mighty blow for feminism.

Thirteen dead bodies. Thirty-five breasts. Excellent shower scene. Lesbo gang-rape. Multiple catfights. The old pillow-case-over-the-head trick. Sleazeball aardvarking.

Flaming prison guard--and I don't mean he's gay. One riot. One gun-battle. Gratuitous aerobic dancing. Bimbo fu.

Drive-In Academy Award nominations for...
*Taylor Leigh, as the evil, bitchy prison warden.
*Chloe Cross, as the friendly and wise inmate who says, "If you wanna stay alive, you don't say anything," but fails to pronounce the word "escape."

*Tane McClure, as the enormously talented blonde who puts on Victoria's Secret lingerie and says, "We'll do anything you say."

*Dink O'Neal, as the evil prosecutor who says, "Get rid of your pity and compassion for the guilty!"

*Nick Wilder, as the sensitive public defender who decides he'd rather do the right thing than have a lot of sex with prisoners.

*Lenny Rose, as the brutal captain who tells the prisoners, "You are filth!"
*And Carrie Genzel, as the spunky little kung-fu cutie who takes off all her clothes and says, "We do this to survive."

Three stars.
Joe Bob says check it out.
JOE BOB'S FIND THAT FLICK This week's noggin-creaser comes from... Maxine Ardoin of Dallas:

"Many years ago, probably in the '60s, there was a TV adventure series--I think it was called 'Soldiers of Fortune.' The two male leads offered their services for hire, a la Paladin. Recently, while watching the Clint Eastwood movie The Unforgiven, I thought I recognized one of the men from the TV series playing either a deputy or friend of cruel sheriff Gene Hackman.

"Can someone verify the title of the series and identify the two leads? Am I correct that one of them appeared in a supporting role in The Unforgiven?"

A video will be awarded to the correct answer. (The winner chooses from a list of about a thousand titles.) In the event of a tie, a drawing will be held. Send "Find That Flick" questions and solutions to Joe Bob Briggs, P.O. Box 2002, Dallas, TX 75221, or fax them to 214-985-7448, or e-mail them to Joe Bob on the Internet:

Victory Over Creeping Liberalism!
The Starlite Drive-In, on East Club Boulevard in Durham, N.C., has survived yet another year, thanks to the gun shop on the premises that helps pay the bills.

Kathy Bednarz and Robert Groves, who own the place, live in a trailer on the lot. In addition to the gun shop, they also rent space to a flea market and a video club to help keep the dream alive.

Graham Carlton of Raeford, N.C., reminds us that, with eternal vigilance, the drive-in will never die.

Dear Joe Bob:
On the way to the cheapest casino in Las Vegas, I passed by Wayne Newton's Arabian horse ranch. I'm having trouble imagining Wayne on a horse. Has he ever been on one?

W. Jung, Meeker, Colo.

Dear W.:
Wayne has been on a horse fewer times than he's sung "MacArthur Park," but more times than he's gone bankrupt.

Copyright 1995 Joe Bob Briggs. (Distributed by NYTSpecial Features/Syndication Sales)