This shot-on-video frolic ultimately commits camp-icide. Only occasionally as funny as its title, LA CAGE AUX ZOMBIES never consistently succeeds in reflecting horror movies through the prism of gay culture. Potential audiences will need high tolerance for gore, drag gags, and the
outrageously bombastic delivery of double entendres.
On their private aircraft, mobster Lenny Henderson (J.R. Clarke) and his butch associate, Moll (Betty Marshall) shoot their crime partner Frank (Theo Assimakopolos) and throw his body out of the plane. It causes a second plane filled with football players to crash in the Andes, where the survivors
become cannibals. Meanwhile, fed up with Lenny's abusive treatment, his high-strung wife Norma (Cathy Roubal) plots to steal his money and run off with her dippy but studly lover Brent (Eric Gladsjo). Norma's confidante/beautician, Tony (William Love), spearheads the anti-Lenny escape plan when
he's not off on an emergency cosmetology repair.
Suspicious Lenny opens fire at Tony's drag club, killing Brent. Somehow resurrected as a zombie, Brent powder-puffs a janitor to death and eats him. While Lenny scours the gay hangout for the money Norma has stolen, Brent becomes addicted to transvestitism as well as cannibalism. After reassuring
Norma, Tony sews the pilfered money into Brent's nightclub gown. Tony beautifies the corpses of the cannibal football players, who've been located and returned, but they too become zombies and ravage the city. Survivor Norma is never reunited with Brent, who, after smashing Lenny to death in an
auto junkyard, is last seen impaling Lenny's lesbian associate, Moll, with his penis.
The best way to approach LA CAGE AUX ZOMBIES is as a sort of pajama party for female impersonators and fag hags. The problem with this tasteless feature's self-aware decadence is that its stars and production personnel have a better time than the viewer. If you enjoy the spectacle of other
people's home movies, then you won't mind the scattershot nature of the gags or the hit-and-miss parodying of George Romero pics. The film does boast some genuinely subversive comic triumphs, like Tony pontifically reading about unsuitable hues from the book Color Me Beautiful. But the isolated
laughs can't obscure the bigger problem of the nature of post-modern female impersonation. In the good old days, men dressed up as larger-than-life women as a lark. In WIGSTOCK (1995) and in this film, the transvestites take their shtick way too seriously. Most of the cast appears to have studied
with Edith Massey, though one recognizably stylish professional, Beautiful Barb, is a hoot as a plastic surgery junkie who endures liposuction torture to resemble Susan Hayward. LA CAGE AUX ZOMBIES could have used more sophisticated hams like her and fewer crossdressing egoists with
finger-snapping attitude. (Graphic violence, extensive nudity, extreme profanity, sexual situations, adult situations, substance abuse.)
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 1995
- Rating: NR
- Review: This shot-on-video frolic ultimately commits camp-icide. Only occasionally as funny as its title, LA CAGE AUX ZOMBIES never consistently succeeds in reflecting horror movies through the prism of gay culture. Potential audiences will need high tolerance for… (more)