Ice Pirates


**
I think certain of these films and television in the late 70s/early 80s spun out of too much disco and cocaine. I seriously thought I was watching a space pirate MGM movie comprised of costumes and sets taken from Buck Rogers. I personally love Buck Rogers, and there is quite a bit Gil Gerard in pirate, Robert Urich. Bobby occupies his lead pirate with the macho masculinity, devil-may-care smiling, rope-swinging, musketeer-behaving, sword-unsheathed swashbuckling anti-hero swagger that could be expected in the early 80s. The costumes, robots, personality, action sequences, plot developments, special effects, humor, and science fiction additions to this film reek of 70s schlock, still maintaining it's desperately clinging, death grip clinching hold onto the 80s. All you need is a crescent moon with coke powder on its nose and a spinning, glimmering disco ball hanging overhead to further call to remembrance where Ice Pirates gets it engine gas to drive. Sure there's plenty of Atari and Arcade emerging its influence, reminding us of where the video game age was beginning to surface until it would bleed into the everyday. With pimp robots speaking jive, Anjelica Huston lopping off heads, time warp aging our heroes and villains as they do battle with Earth's water their attention to elderly, white-afro geriatrics in a manner of two or so minutes, Mad Max bounty hunters giving chase in skull-face dune buggies with Urich and princess trying to stay ahead, a future where assembly lines include castration chompers and lobotomizers as those going through speak in high pitch with blond coifs shortly after, a goof's surviving head ordering around unicorn-riding Amazon women, and a water crises in a galaxy instigating those with and without battling for control. A robot pisses itself while another slips on the puddle! Monks are spared the castration/lobotomy machine because there might just be a God and the risk might be unwise! Urich uses his charms to influence a green female alien, in green blouse she admires, to take her to a desert planet to reconnect with an ole pirate buddy. There's Urich and Mary Crosby (the one that shot JR) making love as a tape produces various atmospheric back drops and idyllic locales to suit their moods. John Matuszak of the Oakland Raiders, and later as Chuck of The Goonies, always around when Urich and sidekick robot expert / mechanic, Michael D Roberts are trying to escape yet another dilemma their pirating places them. More droids than you can shake a stick at, most of the time played as comedy relief and slapstick. Ice Pirates (1984) has its lame appeal, is certainly of its time or past its expiration date even then one could say, this has it's place with the likes of The Apple and Roller Boogie. Of course Logan's Run or Rollerball might even stand above it as a superior, big brother patting it on its head. I can envision Buck Rogers putting an arm around Ice Pirates, welcoming it to a drink...at Studio 54. Can't forget to mention Ron Perlman as a fellow space pirate who loses his hand and collapses in the time warp in white wig due to old age, dressed as if he worked at Pirate Pete's Fishbarn. John Carradine has one single scene, getting the lowdown from his second in command. Mary Crosby, as the princess looking for her dad somehow managed to look sexy in spite of the costuming. And Urich deciding not to go through the motions, taking this preposterous presentation and making the most of it. This is the thing of cult cinema. Some perhaps consider it a cult abomination.











Comments