Back in 1985, there was no internet. If you wanted something racy, you stayed up until 2:15 AM and turned on HBO or Cinemax, where chances were that that something racy was going to be Malibu Express. It’s a cultural touchstone that still instantly bonds you with anyone who watched this way back in those analog days.
Cody Abilene — even the name makes me tear up a little — is a wealthy playboy/private-investigator. Think Thomas Magnum with worse aim, more money and the opportunity to actually get laid by a bevy of women, unlike that TV show. He’s played by Darby Hinton, who started his career on the Disney Daniel Boone TV show before going to high school in Los Angeles and Switzerland then attending college on a cruise ship. Really, he did — it’s called the World Campus Afloat Institute for Shipboard Education and it went around the world to study various cultures.
The plot concerns hacking computers for the Russians, a topic that was as hot in 1985 as it is in 2019, as well as sex and shenanigans amongst the very rich. Other than being a detective, Cody spends the majority of this film’s running time following the three f’s — fighting, fleeing and well, that third of the three f’s — with a bevy of beauties including Playboy Playmates Kimberly McArthur (she’s in Easy Money), Barbara Edwards, Lorraine Michaels, and Lynda Wiesmeier, who shows up in Joysticks and Cirio H. Santiago’s Wheels of Fire.
Cody’s main girl may be police officer Beverly Mcafee, but let’s face facts. Sybil Danning’s Contessa Luciana is the whole reason why I’ve seen this movie more times than I can count on my body parts. I’m not even going to try to apologize for thirteen-year-old me and my raging hormones. It’s Sybil Danning, a reason to believe in the existence of a Higher Power.
This entire movie is basically a remake of Sidaris’ first film, Stacey. It doesn’t matter. There’s less of a plot than gunplay, car chases, sex scenes and bikinis. Andy didn’t make movies to make you question the human condition or ponder the infinite abyss. He made movies to entertain you at 2:45 AM.
While many think of this movie as the initial “L.E.T.H.A.L. Ladies” or “Girls with Guns” film, no major characters or cast members appear in the other movies. That said, in Hard Ticket to Hawaii, Cody’s brother Rowdy shows up.
You can watch this on Tubi or grab the amazing new blu ray from Mill Creek Entertainment. They previously put out an entire set of Andy Sidaris films, but this new release has a cleaned up presentation and extras. I love Mill Creek — not just because they sent me this for review — but because they get hard to find films and release them into places like Walmart!
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