Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Apple: A (Somewhat) Live Blog


(This extended movie trailer provides evidence that everything I'm about to say is true.)

A few years ago, my friend Alex introduced me to this insane, non-sensical low-budget musical called The Apple. What the hell is The Apple, you say? Well, the Apple is a 1980 science fiction rock opera set in a futuristic 1994 (!!!)  that deals with a corrupt music corporation run by the devil who has taken over the world. These two young Canadian singers come on the scene and I guess they are kinda like Adam and Eve (just go with it) and there is an apple, and their lives are basically destroyed, and there's a lot of dancing done in giant group numbers to crazy songs. Wikipedia says, "set in America but filmed in Germany, [Te Apple] was released in West Germany as "Star Rock" in 1979. The film was critically panned and a box office bomb when given an extremely limited U.S. release. It is one of the few movie musicals that has not yet been a live musical." Seriously, somebody needs to make this happen. If I'm not getting a Broadway production of Rebecca, I want a Broadway version of The Apple. C'mon, Julie Taymor. The public cries out for you.

This movie is one of my "So Bad It's Good" gems. Another friend of mine, mentioned on the FB that she was going to watch it tonight and I figured I'd turn it on and do commentary on it as well. I haven't been drinking, so I don't know how this is going to work in terms of me maintaining my sanity. You may want to pour yourself a glass of merlot before we start...

11:15pm: We begin our journey. Thank you MGM for having te balls to bring us this movie. I wonder, how much money was lost in the endeavor?

11:16 - Oddly dressed people are running around screaming while being chased by other oddly-dressed people on motorcycles. They're outside some kind of United Nations building, but they are going to some kind of rock concert. Everyone keeps screaming as they make their way inside. Are they excited or terrified? Am I excited or terrified? The answers to both question is: I simply don't know.

11:18 - It's a rock stage show. There's a white dude and a black chick in gray metallic bathing suits along with swim caps. They shout great lyrics like "Hey Hey Hey! BIM's the only way!" and some other non-rhyming gems like "There ain't no good! There ain't no bad! There's ain't no happiness! There ain't no... tears!" What "sad" was too obvious? The studio audience is totally into it, those mindless fools. There's gotta be at least two dozen back up dancers on stage for this number. What spectacle! It's huge! That's what SHE said!

11:22 - It's Mr. Boogaloo aka The Devil in the control room. I can't understand a word he says through what I guess is an Eastern European accent? I wish I knew how to get closed captioning on Netflix! Boogaloo's cracked out assistant tells Boog their crap BIM themes song scored 150 hearts! What the fuck does that even mean? We'll never find out. But it's a good score, I guess.

11:25 - Our "heroes" Alfie and Bibi take the stage to sing an original love song called "Love The Universal Melody." The audience hates it at first, but then they shut up and listen. They've been won over by choice lyrics like "la, la la la la!" Bibi looks a bit like Susan Dey during the Partridge Family and Alfie has the partly vacant/ partly frightened stare of a Will Ferrell character.

11:28 - The guy who plays the evil henchman Shake is just ABOVE AND BEYOND. I don't know how else to describe his acting choices nor his intonation on the line delivery. It's so over the top. It's amazing. Plus Shake's covered in like a three-inch coating of silver glitter.I stop the movie to check IMDB to make sure he's still alive. He is! He does a lot of theater. Good for him.

11:34 - Alfie and Bibi score 151 hearts (which means?) and Boogaloo takes action making the sound guy play interference (if anyone sees hims doing it then he's DEAD! VERY DEAD!) and the crowd gets angry and turns against them. Alfie and Bibi finish the song in disgrace and bewilderment. They basically stay that way for the next 90 minutes. I guess they lose the competition... even though they had the higher score? Who knows! No one bothered to explain the rules. The whole thing is rigged by Boogaloo.

11:39 - There's some kind of post-contest celebration at Boogaloo's, and Alfie and Bibi are invited for some reason, so they decide to go for some other reason. Nothing's explained! Boogaloo wants to sign them to his Evil Music Label, I guess. Everyone starts wearing BIM triangles on their foreheads as a fashion statement too.

11:41 - The metallic bathing suit duo from earlier are apparently named Dandi and Pandi. Pandi is the girl. I mean, obvs. right?

11:42 - At the party, Dandi clearly wants to Do It with Bibi, while Pandi wants to Do It with Alfie. Have I mentioned Alfie's pants are the tightest pants ever? Because they are. He's wearing jeggings before there jeggings were even a thing!

11:43 - Rule for life: When all else fails, say "MOOSE JAW!" it's hilarious, everyone around you will laugh. Shake says it like 15 times in a row. Alfie and Bibi are from Moose Jaw. LOLOLOLOL!!!

11:45 - Bibi looks out over a balcony: "I've never been so high in my life!" This is before she even takes any drugs!

11:46 - Bibi takes a bunch of drugs handed to her by Dandi without any thought or hesitation. Then they start making out. Hey Bibi, you're supposed to be in love with Alfie! We're only 20 minutes into the movie! Slow down, girl!

11:48 - Dandi and Bibi sing this song called "Made for Me" it has a million cutaway shots to dancers in costumes and wigs that would make the people living in the Hunger Games capital look subdued.

11:50 - Alfie finally finds Bibi kissing Dandi and pulls her out of there. He barely reacts emotionally. They don't discuss the drugs or the kissing. They just leave. Where's the drama??

11:53 - I guess it's the next day now? Bibi and Alfie have come to Boogaloo's Evil Empire building to sign a contract of some sorts - even though they kinda suck musically and they definitely lost the big contest. It's a contract for their SOULS, see? Bibi is totally into singing on with BIM, but Alfie thinks it's an awful idea. Their scenes together are ice cold. I swear these two hate each other.

11:55 - Boogaloo apparently isn't ready for them when they arrive, so naturally this totally insane musical number explodes in the lobby while they're waiting. It's called "Show Business" and stars... Mr. Boogaloo, who you might recall can't see them because he's busy. But he's right there! And there are over 100 extras doing the choreo here. It's crazy.

11:58 - Finally they go to Mr. Boog's office. He wants them to sign right away. Alfie wants their lawyers to look at it first. Bibi wants Alfie to stop ruining all their chance!. I can't figure out where Alfie's accent comes from. It's not American. Nor Canadian. Austrian?

12:00 - Alfie has visions of an earthquake in the office, with terrible destruction and dismay. He stares at it all with total indifference.What does this mean? Does he have special powers of seeing the future and not caring?

11:02 - Now we're in some weird alternate universe that's underground. Dandi is in a g-string. He's singing the title song "The Apple." There are more dancers than ever before. Have I mentioned the choreography in this movie was done by Nigel Lythgoe - executive producer of American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance? It's the highlight of the film, hands down. It keeps you watching. Choice Lyric here: it's a natural natural natural desire! with an actual actual actual vampire!

12:06 - We're magically back in the office. Alfie won't take the contract. Bibi wants to do it even without Alfie.  So after a huge production number nothing has changed! Well, Alfie's pants seem tighter than ever. He leaves, Bibi signs.

12:08 - Booglaoo sings another song called "The Master." It's sort of the Apple's version of Rainbow High. Bibi is getting decked out. All her descamisados expect her to outshine the enemy! She won't disappoint them!

12:10 - We barely can catch our breath before it's time for the movie's best number "Speed." It basically is a music video where Bibi sings about America being on drugs. The lyrics require her to keep screaming "Speeeeed!" "Speeeeeed!" It's amazing and will definitely get stuck in your head. They are employing at least 8 smoke machines to cover the background dancers here too. LOTS of smoke!

12:13 - An old lady on the street is being accosted by police officer for not wearing a BIM triangle on her face. It turns out she's Alfie's landlord.

12:14 - We learn Alfie wears tighty-non-whitey briefs and that's all he sleeps in. And the Landlady just comes into his apartment. Does Bibi normally live here with him? Like so many things in this movie, it remains unclear. Does Alfie have a sexual relationship with his much older landlady? Quite possibly.

12:16 - Alfie sings "Where Has Love Gone." to his landlady/inappropriate love interest. It's a new original song he just wrote or something! Choice Unrhymed Lyric: I've searched every street of this cold wicked city. I don't know where else she could be. I hear that he's well and she's happy, I'll believe it when she tells me so.

12:18 It's the national BIM hour! Everyone has to stop what they're doing and dance as part of the National Fitness Program. Boogalooo means EVERYONE! Of the many scenes we are subjected to witnessing, my favorites are firefighters dancing in front of a burning building, doctors dancing in an operating room while the patient dies and an assortment of nuns in a park. They are breaking it DOWN.

12:22 - Bibi is the new craze with all the kids. Nobody cares about Dandi and Pandi anymore which doesn't sit well with them. A crowd of extras rushes Bibi. Did any of them put this movie on their resumes later on? Alfie tries to fight through the extras to get to Bibi, but instead he gets the shit beaten out of him by BIM security. Bibi starts to reconsider her sorry state of being. She doesn't actually help Alfie in any way though. She's such a bitch, that Bibi.

12:25 - Bibi and Alfie sing an EPIC sad song, "Cry for Me." She sings it while at the window in her penthouse suite in hooker garb. In the words of Latrice Royale, God God, Get a Grip Girl! Alfie sings as he drags his broken body up the stairs of his 5-flight walk up.  Naturally it's raining during the song. There are big thunder and lightning effects to let you know how bad tings are right now for them. Choice lyric: Oh, Alfie, I wish that I were DEAD. I'd rather die than know that I hurt you. How can I go on? You were the only hope left in this hopeless world! And now you're gone. You're gone!

Bathroom Break for O

12:30 -The Landlady nurses Alfie back to health. She gives him a poor man's "Peoples is Peoples" type of speech to motivate him to try to save Bibi. Dude, she is NOT worth it. Live a good live with Landlady instead! But alas, no. Oh, Landlady, he was never yours to lose. Why regret what cannot be?

12:33 - Alfie goes to a Boogaloo party to save Bibi. He runs into a bunch of transvestites who are not sweet and not from Transexual Transylvania. Pandi gives Alfie a drink, but it's roofied and he gets woozy and  then she rapes him! She does! Seriously! While singing this horrible disco song called "Coming For You," no less! It's prominently featured in the trailer embedded above.There is absolutely zero subtext to the lyrics. Is this supposed to be a sexy rape? A funny rape? A legitimate rape? Regardless of how you categorize it, I don't know why any of this is okay. The actual Doing It is represented by a dozen couple dancing the kama sutra positions while Pandi makes panting noises and Alfie screams for Bibi. Holy Jeebus, make this terrible song end! Finally it does. Alfie puts his clothes back on and stumbles toward an exit but before he goes, he finds Bibi Doing It with Dandi. Then he blacks out.

12:42 Alfie wakes up suddenly outside in some park in Germany. Was it all just some horrible nightmare?

12:44 - Unfortunately no. Bibi wakes up the next morning feeling hung over. Shake is there in metallic bikini briefs asking her to go in the sauna. She declines. Your loss, Bibi! Shakes is the best you can do at this point! Bibi thinks she remembers Alife being there, and Pandi confirms that he was. She neglects to mention the RAPING HIM part of the evening. Suddenly Pandi has a change of heart and decides to help Didi escape because Alfie loves her so much. How does she know this? Maybe because Alfie was screaming her name while Pandi was raping him? That's a pretty good guess.

12:50 - Police come to the park where Alfie is now congregating with hippies. They run off into the trees. So very random. Is this movie goona wrap up already?

12:52 - For some reason Shake lets Bibi leave the BIM compound. I guess the plot demanded he do so. Pandi stays behind. Pandi then sings a song called "I Found Me" which is a song about how raping someone changes the rapist too, or something like that.

12:54 The landlady tells Bibi that Alfie left to live with the homeless hippies in the park. Bibi sings a verse of "I Found Me" about how you find the person you love after you sleep with the bad people who help your career, or something.

12:56 Some hippie guy that looks like Captain Caveman takes Bibi into a cave deep in the park to find Alfie. He sing this weird hippie song called "Child of Love" Alfie and Bibi reunite and... embrace. But they don't kiss. Have they kissed once in this entire movie?? They are not in love, guys. They hate each other.

12:59 It's some time in the future. Over a year, since Alfie and Bibi now have a kid together who is toddler-sized and Alfie has a full hippie beard. Armored Police Officers advance on the hippies. They are there for Bibi who broke her BIM contract. Bibi has a huge ridiculous butterfly painted on her forehead. Arrest her for that crime, boys!

1:01 The police decide to cart all the hippies away. Bibi worries what will happen to them. Alfie's all "don't worry. he's coming." Bibi's all, "who's coming?" Alfie's like "Mr. Topps" and Bibi and the viewing audience together are like "WHO'S MR. TOPPS???"

1:02 - Then there is a glowing cadillac floating in the sky. It's the cheapest looking effect ever. A man gets out of the car.  While it's still floating in the sky. And he kinda Glinda-bubbles his way down to the surface. This is Mr. Topps. If you think maybe you missed an earlier scene where he was introduced or mentioned, you haven't. This is new for everyone.

1:03 - Mr. Topps is... God? Umm... okay? He tells all the hippies to walk up into the sky. Alfie and Bibi and their kid walk off into the sky. Pandi follows them leaving behind Dandi. Shake looks chagrined. Boogaloo asks Mr. Topps where he's taking them all. Mr. Topps hasn't thought that far in advance. Nice planning there, God. Will they go to another planet? Yeah, maybe. Another PLANET??? Then Mr. Topps walks back into the sky... leaving BIM to rule the rest of the planet? Well, okay. I guess.

1:07 - The end? Yes, that's the end. WHAAAAAT? We hope you liked the costumes and the dances and the songs. Disclaimeer: No sense was made during the making of this film.

I LOVE THIS MOVIE. I WANT TO WATCH IT AGAIN RIGHT NOW.

(Does Boogaloo actually win? Does Shake become Serpentor? YOU DECIDE!)

Good night, everybody!


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