13 July 2012

Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death

United States - 1988
Director - J. F. Lawton
Paramount Home Video, 1989, VHS
Run Time - 1 hour, 30 minutes

Is there actually a cut-off point when parody becomes self-parody? That is, is it clear, can it be clear, the point when making fun of something or someone says more about the mocker than the mockee? Or is it a sliding scale subject to variations in context and interpretation? The great questions of the universe may never be answered. We do however have Cannibal Women In the Avocado Jungle of Death, a film written and directed by J.F. Lawton, the man who brought us Pizza Man and The Hunted.

As tempting as it is to prove my intellectual superiority by talking trash on this movie, about how it's funny but it's so bad and I'm sooooo aware of that, it's much easier to be honest. After watching CWAJD I retired to my study and consulted the ultimate arbiter of objective truth, Wikipedia where I discovered that there were a number of clever references in this film that I had completely missed. Oh, it's true, CWAJD is low budget, looking more like a Corman produced Filippino production from the same era, and the dialogue and acting are a bit flat (sorry Bill,) but it's far better than it pretends to be.

The foundation of my argument rests on the fact that despite ample opportunity, this film didn't rely on nudity to compel viewership. It could easily have made fun of feminism (it does) and been chock full of boobs thereby undermining its parody of men. But it didn't and so, even though Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death was way over my head, what I was able to understand was worth it.
Thanks to zhukaiww for the trailer.

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