Monday, July 4, 2011

The Van - 1977

"The Van" - 1977
Dir. by Sam Grossman - 1 hr. 32 min.


This movie was so terrible, I had to poke around on the internet to try and find out more about it.  And to my horror, it appears that I watched an edited version of this film (most of the reviews mention copious nudity, which was nowhere to be found in the version streaming on Netflix right now).  I had just figured that it was a poorly done made-for-TV movie, as there were periodic points where there was a black screen for several seconds.  Instead of being for commercial breaks, I guess they were sloppily-done edits to stand between myself and boobage.  This begs the question of why on Earth you'd want to edit out literally the only interesting thing in an awful movie, but that seems to be exactly what had happened.

I can't offer a fair assessment of a butchered movie, but I doubt it would have helped much.  Bobby (Stuart Getz) graduates from high school, which means that he can finally accomplish his life-long dream of owning a custom van.  Unfortunately, the van turns this happy-go-lucky kid into an absolute monster.  That's really a shame, since the van is completely awesome (it features a white fur interior, a waterbed with a mirror mounted directly above it, the then-state-of-the-art duo of a CB radio and 8 Track stereo, a mini-fridge, and even a toaster).  But under it's evil influence, Bobby passes on college, gets into multiple high-speed chases with the police, drives under the influence repeatedly, sexually assaults women, kidnaps his true love, and ends up having to drunkenly drag race the town alpha male, Dugan (Steve Oliver), in order to make his car note.  And nobody calls Dugan a turd!  Except Bobby, of course, who also completely slept with Dugan's girlfriend to console himself over another girl who didn't want to talk to him a couple of nights previous.  And Danny DeVito's in this movie for a handful of minutes as well, proving that he was born looking pretty old.

Since all the fun bits were cut out of the version I unwittingly was subjected to, the complete awesomeness of the van itself is the only thing left that was any good (although I have to imagine that in the event of an auto accident, literally all the cool stuff in the van would fly out of place and fully murder it's driver).  So, please don't bother watching this, and especially don't watch the edited version on Netflix right now.

* / 5 - NF Streaming


  1. Me too, just watched this on Netflix last night, I originally thought it was about an evil van that killed people (seem to remember a movie like that way back when). It was an interesting time capsule of the late 70s in how hot the girls were and how moronic and socially inept the guys were. Like you, after viewing this, I had to find out more about it, and came across user reviews on imdb referring to all the awesome nudity. To my horror, I realized I had wasted an hour and a half watching a 70s teen sex comedy that had all the sex removed! A truly pointless endeavor. I really wish the version on netflix wasn't neutered.

  2. It's a bad situation, because I don't think I'd want to re-watch it just to see what was cut out. But at the same time, I do feel a bit cheated!