Hardbodies (1984)
Hardbodies (1984)

Genre: Comedy Running Time: 1 hr. 28 min.

Release Date: May 4th, 1984 MPAA Rating: R

Director: Mark Griffiths Actors: Grant Cramer, Teal Roberts, Gary Wood, Michael Rapport, Sorrells Pickard, Roberta Collins, Cindy Silver, Kristi Somers, Crystal Shaw, Darcy DeMoss

 


 

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ike any movie entitled “Hardbodies” should, this one begins with a long line of sun-kissed beauties reclining on the beach, slathering lotion all over themselves. One of the girls even takes her top off, while several others soon wade into the water, where they splash and gambol and play keep-away with a bikini. This opening title sequence, featuring terrible music, then segues into a sex scene, where a couple isn’t afraid to moan and roll around in the buff.

The story proper begins with Scotty Palmer (Grant Cramer), the local beach sexpot and player, realizing that since he’s three months behind on rent, his landlord has the right to serve an eviction notice. He doesn’t want to resort to any scams, but he’s getting desperate for some cash. As Scotty attempts to ignore his woes, he continues to spend time hanging out on the sand, laughing with his pals, and reenacting the orgasms he had the previous night to envious onlookers. And the girl, Kristi Kelly (Teal Roberts), proceeds to mime her own nocturnal activities to sunbathing partner Kimberly (Cindy Silver), at another spot down the boardwalk.

Meanwhile, three older men with plenty of disposable funds rent the best house on the beach. Their goal is to find some hot young women – or “hardbodies” – willing to party (or, more specifically, just to have sex with them). But they don’t know the first thing about approaching the seemingly never-ending supply of girls parading around with exposed flesh. When the middle-aged trio witnesses Scotty’s successes with the ladies, they pay him for some pointers (with both a salary and a place to stay). “We don’t want you to pimp for us,” they assure him.

And yet, that’s very much what it feels like. “Sounds kinda sleazy,” muses Palmer, who nevertheless accepts when he returns to his house, which is already occupied by a new tenant. There are plenty of objectionable things going on in this film – from the double-standard of Scotty’s unyielding promiscuity and his disgust toward the idea that Kristi might also be seeing other people, to a dog trained to steal bras, to various scenes of sexual harassment. Of course, it’s all disguised by the playful humor, the makeover montages, and the pitiful moments of rejection endured (and earned) by the unfitting trio of losers. Of course, everyone laughs and smiles when the heavier one, Roger “Rounder” (Michael Rapport), pretends to be a photographer for a modeling agency, resulting in a large assortment of blondes showing off their naked figures in a mini-competition. “He tricked me into taking my clothes off.”

Inexplicably, the oldest one (Sorrells Pickard) finds a young blonde to bed, just as everyone else at a massive soiree manages to pair off. It’s not long before further shindigs follow, soaked in booze and babes. When the regular girls aren’t comparing their breasts or demanding sex marathons or getting wasted, Scotty teams up with a producer working with a gym, generating waves of muscular women willing to reveal skin.

A hint of conflict arises when Hunter (Gary Wood), the sordid one, gets aggressive with Candy (Crystal Shaw) and then sows distrust with Kristi, who really ought to have misgivings about Scotty anyway. Hunter may be the jerk, but it’s difficult to side with Palmer, particularly when his main source of charm comes from swatting a fly with a spatula, before then continuing to cook his eggs with the very same utensil. In general, “Hardbodies” promotes moral and financial recklessness, drug and alcohol abuse, ineffective revenge plots (confusingly, the older trio isn’t shown to be villainous at first), and a lesson or two about adolescent love (and an extremely last-minute message about education) – all obscured by frequent, bared breasts. Rather than being fun and sexy, the movie is mostly awkward, uncomfortable, and too severe to be enjoyable.

– Mike Massie

  • 2/10