Monday, April 11, 2016

Barb Wire, What Casablanca should've been

I know!  "Casablanca" will always go down as a near miss on the list of greatest films of all time.  Most critics agree that Ingrid Bergman was too frumpy and there needed to be a couple of exotic dance scenes to make that film a classic.  Hence we look at 1996's "BarbWire."  The 1990s were a decade made for Pamela Anderson and "Baywatch."  Though, neither survived that decade, it was part of America's playful identity for so many years.  A remake of "Casablanca," this time with no frumpiness and lots of gratuitous dances and nudity, is also part of Ms. Anderson's 1990s legacy.
During America's next civil war (in the year 2019), Steel City is the last bastion of freedom...more like anarchy.  Barb Wire, a part time bounty hunter/mercenary, runs a seedy night club.  As the film opens, she poses as an exotic dancer in order to capture a wanted one of the most steamiest scenes of the 1990s. Usually clad in revealing, tight leather costumes, always heavily armed, and with lots of attitude, she is neutral in the civil war, looking out for herself.  The evil, new government sends Col. Pryzer (Steve Railsback) into Steel City to capture some traitorous insurgents.
 Unbeknownst to Barb, one of them is her old beau, Axle (Temuera Morrison), who mysteriously disappeared from her life during the battle of Seattle (don't ask).  Axle is now married to fellow insurgent, Cora (Victoria Rowell), and together, they seek to flee to Canada and keep fighting.  A ticked off, and jealous Barb is the only soul who can help them, as her neutrality has produced many contacts.  Her love for Axle has turned to hatred.  Will she act out on her hatred and turn Axle, and his new love, into the tyrannical authorities?  Or does she still have a spark for him?  We suspect she still loves him as she lets him see her in a bubble bath, all naked and wet and.....well...never mind.
Lots of explosions, gunfights, torture, nudity, and fighting abound.  All of this gratuity includes an either leather clad Barb....or a nude Barb.  Steve Railsback is terrific as the Nazi like colonel, and Ms. Anderson is perfect for this role.  So, for those of you who have no patience for a frumpy Ingrid Bergman....enjoy "Barb Wire" and all it's gratuity.


  1. Somehow, I missed this classic movie, thanks for this detailed review, which made me feel as if I had studied in film class!