“Easy Wheels” video119

Directed by David O’Malley

New Star Entertainment

(1989) 94 minutes

by Kevin Kocur

I have to admit that I’m not sure which genre of movie our feature film is trying to be—hardcore biker flick, or comedy. Written by Ivan and Sam Raimi (“Army of Darkness”, the “Spiderman” series), “Easy Wheels” is the story of two biker gangs whose paths cross.

“Women Of the Wolf” is the biker chick gang led by She Wolf (Eileen Davidson). She Wolf was raised by, you guessed it, wolves. This group of estrogen-laden n’er-do-wells have been terrorizing central Iowa. Running cars off the road, blowing things up—the whole kit ‘n caboodle. They also have a disdain for men and recently decided to add stealing babies to their resume.

Meanwhile, in Arizona, the “Born Losers” are tearing up the highway when their leader, known only as Bruce (Paul Le Mat), has a “vision”. Bruce’s vision is so bad that it causes him to lose control of the bike and he has to lay ‘er down. When asked about his vision, Bruce tells his gang that something evil is afoot in Iowa and they must go there. I noticed that Iowa looks suspiciously like southern California, but with corn.

Of course all the biker babes look like they stepped out of a salon. Even at 70 mph. Being as this film was made in the 80s, that’s a LOT of hairspray! These cunning cuties appear to have some sort of plan. Bruce’s crew, however, is not as easy on the eyes — nor are they as bright. The scene with them confused by how to operate Jiffy Pop is one example. Speaking of salons, Paul Le Mat traded his greaser look (from American Graffiti) for blond highlights for this film.

It doesn’t take long for Bruce and She Wolf to meet and it’s lust at first sight. During one eye-rolling groaner, Bruce and She Wolf exchange sexy innuendos that only a 10 year-old would find funny. That scene pretty much exemplifies a lot of the movie’s lame attempt at jokes.

Not to say that there weren’t a couple of funny scenes. One of them involves Ben Stein, as a preacher, calling out bingo numbers in church. “B-19? Anyone? Bingo? Anyone? Anyone?” In another scene, the girls are watching a TV soap opera which spoofs a soap that Eileen Davidson stars in.

Eventually, Bruce figures out what the wily women are up to and the inevitable showdown ensues. Because it wouldn’t be a biker movie otherwise…..

I will give credit to most of the actors and actresses for actually riding the bikes in this movie. Granted, most of the bikes were 70s and 80s-era Japanese twins with electric start — which the actors mimicked kick-starting. Bruce is on a Honda VT500 Ascot, and She Wolf rides a Kawasaki 440 LTD (look for the belt-drive). I’ll let you try to figure out what everyone else is riding, should you risk watching this. If you do, look for a cameo by George Plimpton. And don’t forget the Jiffy Pop.

MMM

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