Cinema Epoch // 1996 // 94 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // December 5th, 2006
A land where time stands still and the exotic action never stops...
Straight from the vaults of USA's Up All Night emerges this prehistoric epic, populated by stop-motion dinosaurs, shabby blue screen work, the lamest music video interlude ever put to film, creepy breast implants, grunting, grinding, growling, and loincloths by the kiloton.
For aging action star Tony Markham (Jeff Rector), life has dead-ended. His career is struggling, he's bored with his relationship to bimbo girlfriend Daphne (Griffin Drew) and the Hollywood press is dogging him. But all that's about to change.
After stumbling on a mysterious relic, Tony is transported to Dinosaur Valley, a land stuck in between time, where dinosaurs and cavepeople co-exist. After a run-in with the brutish cavemen, Tony meets Hea-Thor (Denise Ames), a heavily made-up blond cave-hottie with a bikini top that's prone to falling off at inopportune times. She takes Tony to her fellow cavegirls, all wearing equally tenuous tops. They fawn over their new stud, and he is only so eager enough to indulge in their primitive carnal desires.
Fast-forward through some awkward love scenes, slow-motion topless running and pterodactyl attacks, and Tony will unsheathe his inner hominid to defend the girls against the marauding cavemen ...and maybe, just maybe, fall in love.
This is one corny movie, friends. Like 100 acres of prime Iowa real estate corny. While there is plenty of nudity, Dinosaur Valley Girls is first and foremost a comedy, or, rather, a feeble attempt at a comedy.
In fact, the only laughs that this turkey can generate will be of the inadvertent type, e.g. "Look at how crappy that dinosaur looks! It sure is crappy! Ha ha ha ha!" The scripted jokes uniformly tank and actors delivering them boast the comic timing of a whale shark. And sight gags rely mainly on the women's clothes randomly falling off, which might just be the kind of sight gag you can get on board with.
Speaking of nudity, here's the lowdown: there's lots, notably from B-movie princess Griffin Drew who parades around topless for most of the first 15 minutes. Once Tony transports to Dinosaur Valley, it's all about Denise Ames and her backup girls. Ames is attractive enough, but the other girls look bored and -- frankly -- medicated and it appears they traded silicone for bocce balls for their implants. Again, this is mainly a comedy and shouldn't be considered an erotic journey; there are a few sterile love scenes and that ridiculous music video and that's about it.
Finally, prepare yourself for nonstop grunting. Ugh, so much cave-talk that gets old real fast, and we're not dealing with Golden Globe nominees either. The English dialogue burden is shouldered squarely by Rector who wanders around while every other character gets away with guttural throat sounds for their line readings. I know it's a necessary ingredient in the caveman movie, but I'm still irritated.
Still, that being said, there is an intangible charm that hearkens back to those late-night cable schlock overtures. Stop-motion dinosaurs and leggy girls in leopard-print get-ups grunting incoherently does have a certain allure, and if you can get past the utter lack of wit and logical narration this flick might scratch that schlock itch.
The 1.85:1 non-anamorphic widescreen video transfer is big-time unimpressive and likely looks no worse on VHS. The 2.0 stereo mix does the job but with zero fanfare. On the other hand, you'll get a Triceratops-sized pantsload worth of extras: Writer/Director Donald Glut's interesting commentary, a few deleted scenes that won't be missed, alternate nudity-free "family-friendly" takes, some stupid program called "Dinosaur Tracks," hilarious cavegirl auditions, a making-of featurette, photo galleries and a cave-English dictionary.
The movie sucks, but it's not a hurtful sucking -- more like a playful, harmless, nudity-drenched, super-low-budget sucking.
Not much worth excavating here.
Review content copyright © 2006 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2014 HipClick Designs LLC
Scales of Justice
Studio: Cinema Epoch
* 1.85:1 Non-Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Running Time: 94 Minutes
Release Year: 1996
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Director's Commentary
* Making-of Featurette
* Deleted and Alternate Scenes
* "Dinosaur Tracks" Episode
* Photo Galleries
* Cavetalk Dictionary