Truth in advertising achieves new heights with THE GREAT BIKINI OFFROAD ADVENTURE, a made-for-video celebration of nature at its very finest, shot on location in the wilderness and white-water environs of Moab, Utah. Brazenly flaunting a plot which is simplicity itself, it manages to
segment and satisfy its target market in ways that far more expensive efforts might do well to imitate.
Duke Abbey (Floyd Irons) is a grizzled old-timer eking out a peripheral existence in the Mojave Desert, providing off-road jeep tours to vacationers. He's about to lose his business to foreclosure, and a voracious strip-mining concern plans to turn his little corner of paradise into lunar
landscape. When his perky niece, Lori (Lauren Hays), and her two college buds, Paulina (Avalon Anders) and Trisha (Laura Hudspeth), show up over spring break, a little good old-fashioned brainstorming produces the solution to Uncle Duke's financial woes: jeep tours featuring bikini-clad coeds as
tour guides--who aren't above losing their tops if the clientele so desire. Soon Duke's business is flourishing, as everyone from river rats to Japanese businessmen avail themselves of this new wrinkle in the tourism game. When his next-door-neighbor, a white-water river rafting guide, throws in
with them, business booms like gangbusters, despite a rash of corporate dirty tricks which border on the paramilitary. Eventually, the girls meet their quota, Duke makes his nut, and innate corporate greed is vanquished for yet another day.
Although the whole point of this exercise is to provide excuses to display comely young women with their shirts off, the tone is never spurious or unseemly, and everyone seems to be having a good time, which comes as welcome respite from the hyper-stylized passion generally on display in such
entertainments. This hearkens back to the golden years of drive-in exploitation, when Roger Corman types would give their zealous proteges a shopping list of exploitation staples--full dorsal nudity; frontal nudity from the waist up, etc.--and then turn them loose with a Bolex camera and a
In addition, this benign throwaway takes the opportunity to interject some good old grassroots populist agitprop. The subtext here--if such a thing is possible--is The Monkey-Wrench Gang, crusty naturalist Edward Abbey's 1975 cult novel about eco-warriors in the New Mexico outback, which
popularized the term "monkey-wrenching"--tossing a monkey wrench into the works of corporate do-badders intent on strip-mining or clear-cutting the natural environment. The character name "Duke Abbey" is a conflation of Edward Abbey and his fictional hero, Hayduke. There's even a character named
Hayduke, dressed in combat fatigues and camouflage paint, who is constantly sneaking around and blowing things up. None of this is foregrounded, or would seem obtrusive to the unenlightened, but it's tons of fun for those who stumble across it. (Extensive nudity, sexual situations.)
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 1994
- Rating: R
- Review: Truth in advertising achieves new heights with THE GREAT BIKINI OFFROAD ADVENTURE, a made-for-video celebration of nature at its very finest, shot on location in the wilderness and white-water environs of Moab, Utah. Brazenly flaunting a plot which is simp… (more)