Friday, February 26, 2021

BEACH BABES FROM BEYOND (1993) (Full Moon Features Blu-ray Review)

Director's Cut Blu-ray 

Label: Full Moon Features
Region Code: Region-Free
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 80 Minutes 
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo & 5.1 Surround 
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (1.78:1) 
Director: David DeCoteau 
Cast: Sarah Bellomo, Nicole Posey, Tamara Landry, Don Swayze, Joe Estevez, Joey Travolta,  Jackie Stallon, Linnea Quigley, Burt Ward, Michael Todd Davis, Ken Steadman

In the cosmic beach babe flick Beach Babes from Beyond (1993) three gorgeous alien teens from outer space, Xena (Sarah Bellomo, Bikini Drive-In), Luna (Tamara Landry, Sweetheart Murders) and Sola (Nicole Posey), steal one of their dad's cool retro-spaceships and head for the planet Beta 45 to cruise for guys with big brains. However, when they neglect to fill up the tank they run out of space-gas and are forced to crash land on planet Earth, near a California beach community.

There the meet Earthly dudes Dave (Michael Todd Davis) and Jerry (Ken Steadman, Mission of Mercy) who are from the Midwest, but have freshly arrived in sunny California to stay with Dave's meditation-loving uncle Bud (Joe Estevez, Charlie Sheen's uncle), a laid back former surf legend. The alien girls and the midwestern guys hit it off bigtime and all get caught up in a effort to save Bud from being evicted from his beach shack house by entering a beach bikini contest in hopes of winning the prize money and saving his home!   

Beach Babes From Beyond is a super-silly, cheesy beach party flick from the early 90's that is chock full of endless montages of bikini clad babes and surfer dudes frolicking and dancing on the beach, and peppered with loads of lets-save-the... whatever clich├ęs, and plenty of greased-up soft-focus softcore sex scenes of chicks with enormous fake breasts and guys with chiseled abs doing it. It's total cheese-fest and not a great movie by any standard, but it is direted by David DeCoteau (Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama) under his oft-used pseudonym Ellen Cabot,  with his tongue firmly in cheek. DeCoteau is a director who knows his way around a silly script and lots of flesh, so we're in good hands here. If you like early 90's softcore skin flicks and also enjoy 60's bikini beach movies this would be an easy romp to get a kick out of.

A note to the horror-nuts out there, there are no horror elements to be found in this one, it's a light-hearted sex romp with some science fiction elements. There's some cool space ship miniatures and scenes in outer space that are cool, not great, but cool. The interior of the craft that lands on Earth is super low-budget, the interior is a hodge-podge of found parts, the ship controls are obviously game controllers with visible suction cups holding them to the dashboard, hahah, gotta love it!

The movie is perhaps most notorious for featuring a cast comprised largely of more popular actor's extended family members. The alien parents of Zena's are played by Don Swayze (Patrick's brother) and Jackie Stallone (Sylvester's mother), as well as Joey Travolta (brother of John), plus we get horror-queen Linnea Quigley (Return of the Living Dead) as an evil swimsuit designer, and Burt Ward (Robin from the original Batman TV series) as the a judge for the bikini contest. The z-grade movie stunt-casting is sort of fun, but the acting in this one is generally  toilet water, but we get plenty of busty eye-candy if plasticine babes are your cup of tea. 

Audio/Video: Beach Babes From Beyond (1993) arrives on region-free Blu-ray from Full Moon Features in 1080p HD widescreen framed in 1.78:1 widescreen. This is being advertised the film in it's "rawest state as its director intended with every inch of skin and salaciousness intact", and "remastered from the original camera negative", but it does not have the depth and clarity you might be expecting. Full Moon have been stepping up their HD game as of late, but this image is problematic. The source shows plenty of grit and debris, particularly in the optical effects shots, as well as projector scratches and white speckling. Also not helping is that the film is shot with a glam soft focus that hinders fine detail and clarity. While I am quite certain that main body of this is a scan of the OCN there are obvious inserts from lower resolution sources that comprise the "Director's Cut" of the film, these mostly come by way of softcore sex scenes that are thick looking, almost like they have Vaseline smeared on the lens or shot through a veneer of fog. That said, this certainly looks superior to the previous DVD edition I had by quite a margin, the colors are solid, but it's not HD perfection and is inconsistent. 

Audio comes by way of English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo and 5.1 surround with no subtitle options. It's flat and not impressive but it does the trick. The soundtrack features cheesy surf-rock beach tunes by Donna Cristy, Joker, Fair Game (featuring Ron Keel of rockers Keel), Body Electric and Simon Stokes and Chris Pinnick, as well as recycling the tune "The Netherworld Waltz" by Edgar Winter from the movie Netherworld

Extras include eighty-eight minutes of raw behind-the-scene VHS footage which is cool, but I would have preferred a new commentary track with director David DeCoteau, who always does pretty solid and often candid commentaries for his films, which is maybe why they did not task him with it. Additionally there are sixteen minutes of Full Moon trailers. The single-disc release arrives in a standard keepcase with a one-sided sleeve of artwork featuring the original video key artwork, the same artwork is featured on the Blu-ray disc.  

Special Features: 
- Making of Beach Babes From Beyond (88 min) 
- Full Moon Trailers:  Beach Babes from Beyond (2 min), Barb and Kendra Storm Area 51 (2 min), Blade: The Iron Cross (2 min), The Dead Want Women (1 min), Fairy Tales (2 min), Head of the Family (2 min), The Ravaging (1 min), Slave Girls From Beyond Infinity (1 min), Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-A-Rama (1 min), Weedjies: Halloweed Night (2 min), 

Beach Babes From Beyond (1993) is exactly what it sounds like for better or worse. Honestly, I tend to lean toward the worse part of that equation, but it's hard to deny the silly fun of an early 90's lets-save-the-orphanage type bikini beach flick, coming of as something along the lines of Joysticks (1983) by way of Bay Watch if they were mashed-up on late-night Skinemax  

Screenshots from the Full Moon Blu-ray: