Sunday, February 19, 2012

The 80s Movie Library: Disorderlies

If you’ve checked out my brief bio and read my blog posts, then you’ll have noticed that I’ve got a soft spot for 80s movies. I thought what better way to honour the movies I love than with a regular monthly feature dedicated to a different 80s film each month. So here goes…let’s begin with Disorderlies.

The film takes 80s rap group The Fat Boys and casts them as three reject orderlies who work for a nursing home with the dubious honour of being the worst run nursing home in the country. Add a ruthless, cunning and self-serving nephew looking for inept caregivers for his ailing millionaire uncle, and you’ve got a hilariously entertaining mash-up with cool music and ghetto fabulous fun.

The Fat Boys represent the bubble gum era of rap music when MCs rapped about “loungin’,” “cool stylin’” and breaking into pizza parlours for all you can eat pizza pies. What the Fat Boys lack in acting talent, they more than make up for with catchy songs, goofy personalities and their own brand of slapstick comedy.

The boys are Buffy, Markie and Kool – three bumbling, food-obsessed and troublesome nursing home assistants who are constantly on the verge of being fired. Then there’s Winslow Lowry, a gambler who’s deep in debt to a vicious gangster and is zealously awaiting his wealthy Uncle Albert’s death so that he can collect his inheritance. Lowry decides to expedite his uncle’s death by firing the existing healthcare staff and replacing them with incompetent orderlies. After all, he has to make it look like his uncle’s death is accidental, and what better way to sell it than to have completely inept caregivers looking after him. The Fat Boys fit the bill. Lowry hires them to care for his uncle, convinced that it’s only a matter of time before his uncle croaks under their care.

The Fat Boys are exactly what Lowry wanted - bumbling and irresponsible in caring for his uncle. They mix up his prescription medications so badly that they just throw them all out. Rather than deteriorate and die under the disorderlies care, the ailing Albert is actually re-energized by their crazy antics and feels more vibrant than ever. The Fat Boys call Albert “Cool Al.” They get him out of his wheelchair and take him to roller-skating rinks and clubs. They’ve even got him speaking Ebonics and picking up the ladies. Albert isn’t dying anymore. He’s living it up and has a new zest for life thanks to the Fat Boys’ unique quality of care. They inadvertently save the day.

Lowry is beside himself with anger over his uncle’s miraculous recovery. The gangster he’s indebted to is breathing down his neck even more, so while his Uncle Albert is partying with Buffy, Markie and Kool, Lowry aligns himself with the gangster and together they plot to steal his family’s fortune, off Uncle Albert and pin his death on the Fat Boys. Do the Fat Boys succeed in foiling Lowry’s nefarious plan and save Cool Al? If you’ve seen the film, you already know. If you haven’t seen it, you should!

Disoderlies is pure entertainment. Director Michael Schultz basically lets the Fat Boys’ goofy charisma and slapstick humour take centre stage in this fish-out-of-water tale. The Fat Boys are like an urban version of the Three Stooges and the film comes complete with cartoon sound effects when the Fat Boys fall down, slip, slap each other or bump into things. It’s a silly movie filled with enjoyable juvenile humour, infighting and slap fests, and it’s hard not to find the boys endearing and the film utterly enjoyable.

2 comments:

  1. I grew up watching this film. It's hilarious!

    ReplyDelete
  2. @thevoid99 - It's one that I always remember watching as a kid too.

    ReplyDelete

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