DIRECTOR: JERRY BORETTO. RUNNING TIME: 81 mins. VIDEO: LAVENDER FILMS. PRICE £11.99 CERT 18
Virile amateur rugby player Tom Tranny’s stag night takes a turn for the worse when he finds himself chained naked to a lampost and abandoned by his friends, just as violent thunderstorm breaks. Facing the prospect of a long, cold, wet and humiliating night, he unexpectedly sees the possibility of salvation when he spots the stripping ‘traffic warden’ from his stag party approaching him. His relief rapidly turns to horror when a flash of lightning reveals the stripper’s true form – an alien drag queen! Sadly, despite this brisk opening, what should have been a tense paranoid thriller along the lines of The Stepford Wives finds itself fatally undermined by its giveaway title. Consequently, director Jerry Boretto opts for crude and obvious shocks rather than suspense. Nevertheless, he does manage to generate some tension early in the movie as the women of a small Yorkshire town gradually suspect that something is amiss with their men-folk. The accumulation of small incongrous details in these sequences – the rugby club captain’s wife notes that he has stopped farting in bed, whilst the local butcher takes up an interest in interior design, decking out his shop in pastel tones, local pubs near-deserted, previously macho coal miners mincing down the street – is surprisingly well handled. For the most part the film concentrates on Tranny – who, apparently none the worse for wear, duly attends his wedding the morning after his alien encounter for his nuptials – and his bride, the lovely Lucy Van Neck.
She quickly notices a marked change in his behaviour – at the wedding reception he uncharacteristically spurns alcohol and openly admires the floral arrangements – culminating in his inability to consummate the marriage due, he claims, to a sporting injury. Once they return home she frequently finds him cleaning the house and listening to Judy Garland records. Moreover, he seems to recoil from female contact – especially her Aunt Mary. Frustrated by Tranny’s apparent ‘fanny fright’, Lucy embarks on a torrid lesbian love affair with her best friend. Incredibly, even when her husband walks in on them engaging in some hot girl-on-girl action he his not aroused and simply walks out of the room and makes a cup of tea. Things finally come to head when Tranny’s best man nearly drowns in a boating accident on a local lake – when Lucy tries to revive him with the kiss of life, he recoils from the touch of her lips before bursting into flame. A horrified Lucy confronts her husband, who confesses that he, and many of the town’s other men, are actually alien homosexuals – the only survivors of a series of vicious gender wars on their own planet – who have travelled to Earth to try and mate with Earth women in a desperate attempt to perpetuate their doomed race. However, they had underestimated their inability to become sexually aroused by women of any kind, and were now planning a programme of mass artificial insemination instead.
The latter part of the film chronicles Lucy’s increasingly desperate attempts to find help – all phone lines out of the town are permanently engaged and the local police spend all their time limp-wristedly polishing each other’s truncheons. Banding together with some of the town’s other frustrated women, she goes in search of the town’s last remaining ‘real men’ – these mainly consist of several beer-bellied alcoholics found in local pubs, the clientele of a local brothel and several acne-ridden teenagers discovered masturbating over a girlie magazine. The final arbiter of their authenticity is to see if they can manage an erection when faced with a naked woman. In a predictable climax, the alien spaceship is located by Lucy and her heterosexual vigilantes in a nearby wood, the missing menfolk aboard it, wired up to some phallic looking devices. As the men are released, their alien doubles burst into flame and die. The film ends with the town’s women happily reunited with their pot-bellied, beer-swilling husbands. Director Boretto has claimed that the film is actually a satire on society’s attitude toward sexuality. Others feel that its portrayal of homosexuals simply reinforces grossly offensive homophobic stereotypes. Either way, it’s cobblers.