Porky’s (1982)

Porky’s (1982)

“You just got to show them who’s boss.”

Synopsis:
When a group of horny teenage boys are thrown out of a sleazy strip joint named Porky’s and a corrupt sheriff (Alex Karras) damages their car, they vow to get their revenge.

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • Comedy
  • Revenge
  • Teenagers
  • Virginity

Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, this “smutty juvenile comedy” centering “on a group of jerky high-school boys who have sex on the brain” is amazingly “unfunny”, with “all the humor… vulgar and sex-related.” The characters are “repulsive”, the acting is “awful”, and director “Bob Clark’s idea of a good joke is having one character embarrass himself/herself sexually and having lots of other characters stand around laughing.” However, given what a “phenomenal commercial success” this flick was (and the cult following it continues to maintain), film fanatics should probably sit through it once. Good luck.

Redeeming Qualities and Moments:

  • A surprisingly serious subplot in which a boy (Cyril O’Reilly) deals with both his abusive father and his anti-semitism

Must See?
Yes, but simply for its cult status and infamy as one of the first of the “Teen Sex Gross Out” films.

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One thought on “Porky’s (1982)

  1. Grudgingly, a must. Not because it’s all that memorable – it isn’t – but it’s a perfect example of a film that’s not as bad as its rep, and is instructive as crowd-pleasing fare with a difference.

    I had actually never seen it. But I avoided it til now cause I recall it had been given low ratings (1 star) in a number of places – and always assumed it was the kind of film 15-year-olds would consider must-see.

    Which, in a sense, is true. However, the way similar films these days treat the subject of juvenile sex, ‘Porky’s’ may come off as downright quaint.

    Needless to say, perhaps, I don’t find the film all that vulgar. Sure, it’s sex-drenched, but that’s really a fraction (surprisingly) of what the film is.

    If I don’t find it very funny, that’s probably because I’m gay and much of the humor comes from the not-very-bright antics of straight white boys.

    That said, there are actually a few funny sequences: I love the showdown between Kim Cattrall as the allegedly virginal Honeywell and Nancy Parsons (memorable from ‘Motel Hell’ two years prior) as Beulah Balbricker – a tensely entertaining exchange. As well, Parsons shines in her own showdown with a very game Eric Christmas when she’s determined to ‘bring to justice’ the boy she may very well secretly have the hots for. (You decide.) The opening sequence – which sets the film’s ‘tone’ – does have an amusing, all-too-familiar, everyday, teen-boy occurence set to amusing, counterpoint lyrics sung by Patti Page.

    A year after making this film, director/writer Bob Clark brought us his adaptation/collaboration of Jean Shepherd’s ‘A Christmas Story’ – a perennial favorite which airs every Christmas, generally all day long (at least on TNT). ‘Porky’s’ shares that same nostalgic, episodic feel.

    Overall, it’s a well-produced film. Rather predictable and with few surprises. But, ultimately, harmless really, and with more on its mind than ‘one thing’.

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