Friday, June 3, 2016

ZAPPED! (1982) (Blu-ray Review)

ZAPPED! (1982) 
Label: Olive Films
Region Code: A
Rating: R 
Duration: 98 Minutes 
Audio: English DTS-HD MA 2.0
VIideo: 1080p HD WIdescreen (1.85:1) 
Director: Robert J. Rosenthal
Cast: Scott Baio, Willie Aames, Scatman Crothers, Robert Mandan, Heather Thomas, Felice Schachter
Synopsis: When a lab accident leaves high school student Barney Springboro (Scott Baio, TV’s Happy Days and Charles in Charge) with telekinetic powers, it’s a comic free-for-all in Zapped!  Encouraged by his friend, the hormonally minded Peyton Nichols (Willie Aames, TV’s Eight is Enough and Charles in Charge) to put his powers to good use, Barney exacts revenge on school bullies, cheats a little at sports and improves his luck with the girls, culminating in a prom scene reminiscent of Carrie … with laughs. Zapped! co-stars Heather Thomas (TV’s The Fall Guy) as Jane, the cold-as-ice high school beauty; Felice Schachter (TV’s The Facts of Life) as Bernadette, feminist class president, nerd and the girl of Barney’s dreams; and Robert Mandan (TV’s Soap) as high school principal Walter J. Coolidge.

Few actors scream 80s cheese to me the way the face of Scott Baio does, from his appearances on Happy Days as "Chachi" onto his starring appearance on the ludicrous 80s TV sitcom Charles In Charge the guy is a slice of bonafide 80s awesomeness. Here he appears with his future Charles In Charge co-star Willie Ames, Baio is a nerdy science geek Barney and Ames is his jocular friend Peyton, the star of the high school baseball team. Together these two find themselves in amidst horny 80's tomfoolery after a lab accident imbues Barney with telekinetic powers, what transpires is a oddball 80s mash-up of Brian De Palma's Carrie by way of Hard Bodies with an Exorcist homage thrown in for fun. 

There's a lot to pick apart with this movie if you're so inclined, but as a nostalgic slice of 80s comedy this is fun stuff. Sure Willie Aames might be one of the worst actors ever but both he and Baio exude a certain nice guy charm that is hard to deny, and then we have the lovely eye candy of blond bombshell Heather Thomas as the popular girl who our teens lusts after while Barney slowly begins to fall for the nerdy, school reporter who won't leave him alone. 

Along the way we have the always awesome Scatman Crothers as the physical education teacher who has a very strange and surreal hallucination about riding bicycles with Albert Einstein and a salami cannon, I shit you not! This one is rated R and proud of it with copious amounts of nude women and some strange sexual scenarios you won't soon forget. If you loved 80s sex comedies like Hard Bodies but wished there was a lunatic science fiction element thrown in for fun then this is the movie you've been waiting for.

Zapped is a fun time, my love for it is surely enhanced by a massive amount of VHS era nostalgia so I cannot guarantee you will get the same mileage out of it that I do, but if you love '80s comedies there's a fairly good chance you will have a blast with this one. Happy to see more '80s comedies arriving on Blu-ray, always worth a few bucks for some good laughs. 2.5/5

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