Editor’s Note: Sam took a swat at this best-forgotten ’80s comedy back on February 2, 2021, as part of its inclusion on Mill Creek’s B-Movie Blast 50-film pack. If there’s a film that doesn’t deserve as a second, fresh take, it’s Cavegirl. But here we are, as the film is also part of Mill Creek’s The Excellent Eighties 50-film pack.
I’ve been a fan of Daniel Roebuck ever since his chilling portrayal of Sampson Tollet in the juvenile delinquent classic River’s Edge. But in proof that all actors must start somewhere on their journey to becoming a stock player in Rob Zombie’s retro-celluloid house of horrors or picking up work in cool Don Coscarelli flicks, Roebuck made his feature film debut with this caveman-cum-jungle girl comedy. And at the risk of offending an actor I respect: this movie is as stone cold dumb as it looks. Can we blame this film’s inspiration on Ringo Starr’s Caveman? Eh, probably.
In one of the most-unlikely “high school students” committed to film, Roebuck stars as the way-too-old and oafy-dopey Rex, the type of guy that loves bones — as well as boners for unattainable girls — who gets a shot at the (cave) babe of his dreams. However, unlike Pauly Shore’s Encino Man from 1992, where the hot cave person comes to the present, Rex transports back to The Stone Age.
Ugh. Don’t you know your innocuous and implausible comedies, such as 1976’s Freaky Friday or 1988’s Vice Versa? A magic trinket does the job. In this case: Rex discoveres a cave wall-encrusted magic crystal. There he meets a cavebabe, Eba (Cynthia Thompson, who made her debut in Tomboy and ended up, in all places, a Ruggero Deodato flick, Body Count). And while Rex tries to get under her skimpy animal skins, he helps her tribe fend off a warring cannibal tribe. The end.
Now, if the character of “Brenda” looks familiar to you — but the actress name Stacey Swain does not — that’s because it’s Stacey Q! Yes, she the ’80s pop queen who made it into the U.S. Top Ten with “Two of Hearts” in 1986. Her song “Synthicide,” which was the debut single by SSQ, which cracked the U.S. Top Fifty back in 1983, appears on the soundtrack. That song, along with “Big Electronic Beat” and “Clockwork,” from SSQ’s lone album on Enigma Records (also home to the very-similar Berlin lead by ’70s actress Terry Nunn), also appears on the soundtrack to 1984’s Hardbodies (that, shockingly, hasn’t been “Mill Creek’d,” at least not yet). If you’re a punker and you love your zombies, you’ve heard Stacey’s soundtrack work before, on, of all places, The Return of the the Living Dead. Remember when Linnea Quigley stripped for Trash in the graveyard? Well, the song “Tonight (We’ll Make Love Until We Die)” blaring over the boombox is Stacey fronting SSQ.
Yeah, when the backstory on the soundtrack is more interesting than the movie, you know you’ve got narrative issues with your film.
This ended up being the only feature film writing and directing debut for rock video director David Oliver Pfeil, in which he also served as his own producer and cinematographer. It’s certain he had higher hopes for his passion project. But when you’re backed by Crown International, boobs rule over one’s artistic passions. But no worries: Pfeil went onto become a prolific opening credits designer for features films and television series. One his many credits was the opening titles for the film and series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century — which is the best part of that decrepit, plastic Star Wars knockoff.
You can watch Cavegirl on YouTube.