Episode 16 - Thrashin' (1986)
I remember seeing this movie for the first time on a whim. As a teenager in the early 2000s collecting DVDs I would buy pretty much anything - most of them I still can’t get rid of. This movie stuck out to me, sitting on that Best Buy rack in the new release section. It looked so bad I couldn’t pass it up; I’m so glad I didn’t
Thrashin’ is not a Grindhouse of Exploitation film in the true sense of the word. While it certainly can be considered an exploitation film because it takes a subculture of American society and exploits it for a profit it’s not like many of the other movies we cover. This film is important to me because it’s one of the reasons I created this podcast, it’s a movie so weird and so odd that I believe it needed to be shared with like minded people who haven’t had the chance to see it.
This movie is the pinnacle of the 1980s to me. The clothing, the hair, the dialogue, the people; it’s all proof that America just lost its damn mind for an entire decade.
The only reason this movie has avoided complete obscurity is because of two things: it stars Josh Brolin (right off his first movie “The Goonies”) and has a cameo by The Red Hot Chili Peppers. If not for them, we might not be watching this right now. The film bombed; and bombed hard. It was regarded as a joke by skaters at the time and was the butt of jokes for over a decade; Tony Hawk even mentioned it in his memoir.
The story behind the film is absolutely fascinating. It was produced and written by a very eccentric and likeable man named Alan Sacks - who provides an interesting commentary and interview on the DVD version of the film. I won’t spoil anything here, the episode covers all the making of as well as the controversy and differences of opinions between Alan and his chosen director David Winters (who was best known as a Broadway Dancer in Westside Story).
I hope you enjoy the episode and the film (if you choose to watch it; which I highly recommend).
NEXT WEEK'S FILM:
Director: Jack Hill
Writers: Jack Hill (Story), F.X. Maier (Screenplay)
Stars: Robbie Lee, Joanne Nail, Monica Gayle