Troma // 1991 // 90 Minutes // Rated R
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // October 31st, 2003
"Sometimes the best man for the job is a woman."
Look in the sky. It's a bird. It's a plane. No, it's a squadron of highly-trained, danger-be-damned, D-cup Divas called the Tomcat Angels. Whether it's working relentlessly to graduate at the top of their class, embarking on big-risk fighter jet training maneuvers, infiltrating low-security enemy compounds, or knocking boots with their suave flyboy-toys, these Angels put the POW in female empowerment, long before Charlie's trio hit the big screen.
Callie Baker (Kerri Danesi) leads the airborne charge into enemy territory, a surprisingly lush and wooded Iraq, only to find herself shot down by a bogey, and soon a captive of a deranged, sex-starved general and his sadistic second-in-command. How do we know he's sadistic? He has a hook for a hand, of course! Other than this appendage, this guy is as ineffective an interrogator and intimidator as a nun. His repertoire is limited to raspy threats and a few limp-wristed slaps to the face, but apparently this is enough to crack the impenetrable training of the Tomcat Angels, as Callie immediately chooses to go with the general for a bonk or two instead of withstanding any more "torture."
Meanwhile back on AIRCRAFT CARRIER IN OCEAN file footage, which is the Tomcat Angels' base of operations, the remaining team members, led by Callie's main squeeze Captain Nash (Craig Shoemaker), develop a highly complex plan to retrieve their fallen angel: land their planes on a thruway and make it up as they go.
With the help of a defector, the rescue squad embarks on their mission, which will lead to the inevitable bullet-flinging toward the inept soldiers, a showdown with the general (who suffers from "Arrogant-Bad-Guy-Who-Pulls-a-Gun-Despite-the-Four-Assault-Weapons-Trained-on-His-Forehead Syndrome"), a wild Jeep chase, and -- despite the Tomcat Angels' constant raving about girl power through the film -- the female rescuers ending up in their underwear while engaged in a vicious firefight.
Troma's release of this 1991 "actioner" marks a possible first in DVD: one would be hard-pressed to find a disc, outside of a Discovery Channel documentary, that uses so much file footage. Whenever the Tomcat Angels (no coincidence the initials are T and A) take to the sky, what appear to be clips lifted from a Navy recruiting video are intertwined with crotch-up shots of the pilots in their cockpit. As such:
FILE FOOTAGE OF JETS FLYING AROUND
FILE FOOTAGE OF DIFFERENT JETS FLYING AROUND
And so on and so forth.
This movie is filth -- long and slow filth -- with all the ingredients in check to make it halfway-decent late-night fodder with friends and pizza. There are some great lines to be had here, including the nonsensical "American women are as arrogant as American men, even more so." Eh?
Tomcat Angels is presented in full-frame; the picture quality is grainy, due to the Dollar Store-level film stock used. Sound is in mono with the dialogue often retreating behind the oppressive ear-shredding soundtrack.
Extra features are spare, with some Troma trailers and a few advertising spots.
Tomcat Angels is branded as "high-flying, high-tech action," which couldn't be more untrue -- unless of course it refers to the real pilots who originally flew the missions captured on video that was pilfered for this movie. The dialogue is cringe-worthy, the Angels themselves are hypocritically sleazy, the action blows huge, and the plot is as compelling as your local classified section. But if you're renting this, you're looking for righteous trash, and Tomcat Angels serves it up something fierce.
The Tomcat Angels are ordered to continue flying over enemy space until each one is shot down, where they will be held interminably in a prisoner compound, forced to watch reruns of Laverne and Shirley and learn what female empowerment is all about. We're going to do it!
Review content copyright © 2003 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2013 HipClick Designs LLC
Scales of Justice
* Bottom 100 Discs: #16
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono (English)
Running Time: 90 Minutes
Release Year: 1991
MPAA Rating: Rated R
* Trailers: Citizen Toxie, Tales from the Crapper, The Hall Monitor
* "Make Your Own Damn Movie" Spot