Friday, November 18, 2016

#2,254. The Last American Virgin (1982)

Directed By: Boaz Davidson

Starring: Lawrence Monoson, Diane Franklin, Steve Antin

Tag line: "There's only one thing left to lose"

Trivia: An actress playing a call girl was propositioned during shooting on Hollywood Boulevard

It’s funny how your memory can play tricks on you. For years, I was under the impression that 1982’s The Last American Virgin was the raunchiest of the early ‘80s teen sex comedies. Sure, it has its share of sex, and T & A to spare, but like Porky’s and Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Last American Virgin offers more than a bunch of horny guys and the occasional set of bare boobs.

Produced by Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus, The Last American Virgin is a U.S. remake of 1978’s Lemon Popsicle, which is one of the all-time highest grossing films in Israeli history. Directed by Boaz Davidson (who also helmed the original), this version of the story follows three American teenagers: Gary (Lawrence Monoson), Rick (Steve Antin) and David (Joe Rubbo), on their never-ending quest to get laid. Rick is the ladies’ man of the group, and before long starts dating Karen (Diane Franklin), a classmate whose family recently moved to the area. The problem is that Gary fell instantly in love with Karen the moment he set eyes on her, and knows that Rick is only looking for a good time. Gary will eventually get his chance to prove his feelings for Karen, but will she return his affections?

The Last American Virgin is, indeed, raunchy; at one point, the three pals pay a visit to Carmela (Louisa Moritz), a feisty Spanish nymphomaniac who put the moves on Gary when he delivered a pizza to her earlier in the day. Before they’re rudely interrupted by Carmela’s boyfriend Paco (Roberto Rodriguez), a few of the guys manage to go all the way with her. In addition, the movie uses humor to tackle such hot-button topics as prostitution and STDs (a nighttime encounter with a loudmouthed hooker named Ruby, played by Nancy Brock, leaves the boys with more than good memories).

But The Last American Virgin is also effective at portraying unrequited love (Gary falls hard for Karen, and it tears him up to see his friend with her), and there’s a sequence involving teen pregnancy and abortion that actually goes a step further than a similar one found in in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (this movie’s operation scene has just as much nudity, if not more, as anything that came before it). And if you grew up in the ‘80s (like me), you’re gonna love the soundtrack, which features tunes by The Cars, Devo, Journey, and REO Speedwagon (among others).

As seen in the documentary Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films, Messrs. Golan and Globus unleashed quite a bit of trash on the American public throughout the 1980s. The Last American Virgin may look like trash on paper, but it is one of their best efforts, and presents the teenage experience better than many of the like-minded movies that followed it.

1 comment:

Peter Nielsen said...

I really, really liked this movie! For lots of reasons... there's drama... there's comedy... there's the beautiful Diane Franklin... there's sadness... and it feels real, 'cause this movie shows us that it's not all roses and sunshine, or as Darrell put it when we covered it way back, on Forgotten Flix... "This is the saddest f*#%ing movie I've ever seen!" :-D
And those that has seen the movie, knows what he means!