Directed by Larry Clark
Written by Christos N. Gage
Produced by Lou Arkoff, Colleen Camp & Stan Winston
Cinematography by Steve Gainer
Music by Zoë Poledouris & Angel Roché Jr.
Cast: Andrew Keegan, Tara Subkoff, Richard Hillman, Tiffany Limos & Stephen Jasso.
2002/100 mins/Color/5.1 Dolby Digital
1.77:1, 1.33:1 anamorphic/English/US/NTSC Region 1
Review from the Columbia Tristar Home Entertainment DVD
"The future sucks."
Prior to directing KEN PARK, Larry Clark was a hired gun for one of Cinemax's Creature Features lineups based on old school 50's Monster flicks. Films like Roger Corman's 1958 original TEENAGE CAVE MAN have been remade with a new revamped modern style. So being a horror movie and Larry Clark fan, this film seemed to have the makings of a fun little horror flick -- or at least a good piece of sex, gore and cheese. During a heated argument with two of the characters in TEENAGE CAVEMAN, a line of dialog is said that pretty much sums up the movie entirely: "Look at you. Like a bad B-movie!"
The backdrop for TEENAGE CAVEMAN takes place sometime after an environmental apocalypse which kills the majority of mankind. The remaining survivors are forced into a prehistoric existence. Communities have to be restructured with primitive ideals and basic survival skills to carry on. A group of teenagers leave their tribe after the murder of a religious extremist leader to find the truth of what is really out there. But who and what the group finds may change humanity forever.
Insert the over-the-top Neil (Hillman), and his life partner Judith (Limos, KEN PARK), in a long abandoned city who take the group of teenagers in their home with open arms (and legs). Shortly thereafter the group are convinced to disrobe and get in a hot tub, thus begins Larry Clark's direction. The group gets to know each other personally through orgies, where cherries are popped and masses of alcohol and cocaine are consumed. In between the abundance of soft nudity (boobies bouncing about and such), people start going missing and Stan Winston gets to work with varying degrees of quality gore. Neil confesses to the group that he was experimented on years ago and is now one of the remaining survivors of the experiments (Judith included) which resulted in immortality. Unbeknownst to the teenage cavemen the two have a plan to create a race of super humans like themselves that never die. Of course conflicts arise and people die, get laid, and there is a kick ass monster at the end of the film that should have been introduced earlier.
TEENAGE CAVEMAN is a unique little oddity. The film is pretty much alienated into segments -- in the caves as cavemen, nudity and orgy sequences ala KIDS and BULLY (what Clark does best), and the horror monster movie which follows. It is hard to discern whether the movie is good or not. TEENAGE CAVEMAN has its fair share of terrible moments like the drunken banter and laughter from Hillman's character, the shouting from Limos' character, and of course some stiff acting, but then there are the good moments like the nudity, the campy ridiculousness of the naive teens, and the monster make-up with some really nice gore scenes. The film isn't a gore fest by any stretch of the imagination, but it does have some memorable FX shots that are great such as the decapitation or the exploding body. It was interesting to see two of the stars of Clark's newest KEN PARK here as well, Tiffany Limos and Stephen Jasso who also get down and dirty (more so) in KEN PARK. So the verdict for TEENAGE CAVEMAN is the same as the dialog undoubtedly placed purposely into the script "Like a bad B-movie!" If you know what you're getting into it should be a somewhat painful, but enjoyable ride.
Columbia Tristar Home Entertainment gives the viewer the option to watch the TEENAGE CAVEMAN snipped to a pan scan 1.33:1 aspect ratio or the way the film should be viewed, anamorphic 1.77:1 widescreen. The video is standard quality for today's standards, but better than a lot of the cheapie straight to DVD horror flicks. The caveman sequences are dull and drab, but the shots of the outside world are more saturated with vibrant color. The audio here is presented Dolby Digital 5.1 and works well with the film. The shouting by Limos and even more the drunken laughs from Hillman can be a challenge to endure in 5.1 but for the limited need for a fantastic sound mastering, it is almost unnecessary for a B-movie like this. The cheesy slapping and punching sound FX do shine through. The 'Special Features' herein are a needless 2:25 min supposed 'Making-of Featurette' consisting of people wasting your time with the type of clothing used in the picture, a 'Photo Gallery' split into four sections 'Monster Sketches', ,Building the Monster', 'Behind-the-Scenes Photos', and 'Production Stills', providing a couple decent behind the scenes shots and sketches of the end monster. Next up are some trailers for 'Creature Features' films, BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA, and URBAN LEGENDS: FINAL CUT. It would have been nice to include a real making-of with some short interviews with the cast and Clark.
This Film Features:
Review by Chris Mayo. All Right Reserved. 2004. ©