DVD Review – Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films (2014)
Before viewing Electric Bugaloo, my history with Canon movies was at a minimal, from what’s listed and discussed in the documentary, it’s Masters of the Universe! That was it and hell, I think that was at least 15-20 years since I’ve last seen it. So you can imagine my surprise as I see this detailed history reiterated by the stars and the men behind the scenes of one of the most notorious film studios in existence!
The documentary introduces to us GUY ONE and GUY TWO, the men who run a large chunk of Israeli cinema and bought their way into Hollywood! They started with a series of black and white skin flicks and teenage romps much in the vain of Porkys to convincing the likes of Christopher Reeve to star in Superman IV: Quest for Peace and getting Rocky to star in a movie about the sport of…arm wrestling! It’s a truly incredible history of truly bizarre work behind them.
I don’t want to repeat every point and subject brought up in the documentary, but it’s amazing to see the amount of ground they covered, Ninjas, horror, fantasy. But it’s how reckless and carefree, they signed each other’s cheques, they started productions in random countries and wouldn’t mention it to the other! At times it sounds like ground breaking indie cinema, or times it looks like a complete shit-show!
Coming out of the viewing, I have to admit there are probably half a dozen Canon films I really fancy checking out now! I’d have to imagine that there is a huge cult following dedicated to various levels of Canon cinema – Ninja movies, grind-house horrors and of course Chuck Norris.
They would show us how they would discover trends – like break dancing and quickly development a movie starring the street performers and if other studios caught wind and had their own projects; Canon would always make sure they would be first in the cinema.
It’s these stories that make this documentary and absolutely engrossing watch. I don’t even know the running time to this doc! I just sat and watched it, never took my eyes of the screen, never looked through my phone, Google image searched the chick from Life Force, none it! This documentary captured my attention and my imagination.
DVD Special Features
The biggest crime committed to this documentary though is the UK DVD release; I’m stunned that there are no extras on this DVD. I would imagine an abundance of extra interviews, maybe more sordid stories, heck I would have loved it if they just had a catalogue of trailers included, listening to that great movie trailer voice describe titles like Schizoid, X-Ray etc.
It’s very unfortunate; I mean there are sound options, but there are no subtitles! The only positive about the release is that damn catchy opening song is played constantly on the DVD menu screen!