Review: Beach Babes From Beyond (Grindhouse 7)/ Cert: 18 / Director: David DeCoteau / Screenplay: Alexander Sachs / Starring: Joe Estevez, Joey Travolta, Linnea Quigley, Sarah Bellomo / Release Date: Out Now
Back in the early '90s, direct-to-video maestros Full Moon Features set up a subsidiary, TorchLight, which was tasked with producing sci-fi themed sex comedies. Beach Babes From Beyond was their historic first release, and Starburst would be remiss if we didn't devote a review to its reissue on DVD – after all, we pride ourselves on our uniquely comprehensive coverage of all things genre-related. Well, that's our excuse anyway.
The plot needn't detain us long. Out for a weekend jaunt across the galaxy, a trio of space vixens crash land on the coast of California, where they fall for (and engage in slow-mo soft focus sex with) a trio of hunks, two of whom are staying with surfer hippy Uncle Bud (Estevez) at his run-down beach shack. Bud's in a spot of bother though. He needs $30,000 to fix up his hovel so it won't be condemned. Luckily, this is exactly the same amount of money as is on offer as first prize in a bikini contest, and one of the bodacious space babes is a whiz with a thread and needle.
All right, so it's not the most eventful or action-packed of movies, or the most PC either. But, with its lazy charm, it's sun-kissed visuals and its healthy hedonism, it's a surprisingly easy one to like. It ambles along, cracking jokes, exhaling ozone and throwing breasts at the screen, all to the strains of some rather decent surf pop. The whole thing feels like one of the zanier episodes of Baywatch, and if you're a sucker for that Hofftastic show, you'll probably like this. Anyone wanting to research early '90s bikini fashions is also likely to have a field day.
Someone had a lot of fun with the casting: the brothers of John Travolta, Patrick Swayze and Martin Sheen take on supporting roles, as does Sylvester Stallone's mother (and very nice she is too, Sly), while none other than Burt (Robin) Ward crops up as a smooth business exec. The acting is a bit rough around the edges, but the young folks are nice to look at and very personable.
This disc comes with a very jolly behind-the-scenes documentary, and steamy deleted scenes which, if included, would have taken the film in a harder, blue movie-ish direction. As it stands, Beach Babes From Beyond is rather cute and innocent. It's also a movie which touches on important themes of togetherness in a world and a universe that all too often seems divided... okay, no, it doesn't, but it's still well worth a sneaky watch.
Extras: Extended scenes / Original Videozone / Full Moon Trailer Park / Original Trailer