Directed by Charles E. Cullen
Starring Nelson Oliver and Phillip Hurt
Runtime 3 fucking hours - Unrated
I normally give ratings ranging from 0-4 stars. Normality doesn't apply here.
What do you get when you cross Avatar and Inception? I have no fucking clue. Until then, we'll have to settle for "Bros on Bikes". This isn't the first Charles Cullen film to grace this blog. If you are a regular reader (which my statistics page indicates is unlikely), you already know that Cullen films are mind warping. If you have never used illegal drugs, you may want to after viewing this film. If you are a drug addict, then a viewing may compel you to quit. In other words, the 3 hour-long "Bros on Bikes" can leave you forever altered and puts you at risk of emotional and mental scarring. This may be why the "chicken man" has such a loyal cult following. His fans have spent so much time soaking in the material that they have been inadvertently lobotomized. Now they have to watch Cullen films because sensory overload has built up a strong immunity to normal forms of entertainment. This is all just a theory of course. Clinical studies on the phenomenon are scheduled to begin in the summer of 2053.
"Bros on Bikes" begins with the finding of a rare archeological artifact by a duo of gay bikers, Saltine (Oliver and Juanita (Hurt). These two lovers are members of the Krackers Motorcycle Club, which I dearly hope is fictional. Not all of the bikers in the gang are gay, but Saltine is the leader and he doesn't appear to be closeted. This leads me to believe they are a tolerant biker gang, sort of. It may be a useful visual aid to imagine that the "rare archeological artifact" was probably purchased at a local Goodwill.
The film is divided in to three fairly distinct chapters. The first chapter is solely dedicated to character development. It's an exploration of Saltine and Juanita's complicated relationship. Saltine doesn't always show enough affection for Juanita and that leads Juanita to, um, switch teams briefly. Naturally, Saltine is jealous and shoots a hole through Juanita's hand. This sequence has tons of hilarious one-liners but one stands above the rest. Just after being shot, Juanita declares, "You do care." That is followed by what felt like a 20 minute montage of psychedelic make-up sex. Saltine's penis is about 3 feet long and I know for a fact that it is
not a prop a strap-on. Oh so very thankfully, the majority of the sex takes place in silhouette. There is a mummy playing a theremin in the same room where the "magic happens". I suppose he's trying to provide a little music to set the mood. The most disturbing part about the scene is the absence of any lubricant.
The second chapter introduces us to the town our characters inhabit. Somewhere near Haiti and Jamaica is the little outpost of Mayor's Cove. The titular mayor of this town has simple policies, "no bikers, no gays and no coloreds." The Krackers are given a pass because they tend to the town's marijuana crop and "keep out the other trash."
The local radio D.J. doesn't subscribe to the racist, homophobic proclamations of the mayor. He's physical handicapped and the mayor's enforcers bully and intimidate him into promoting the town rules over the airwaves. Spinning some vinyl at a local bar's "soul night", the D.J. makes himself a target by playing "colored music", such as "Ben" by Michael Jackson. When the Saltines start dying by way of spontaneous head explosion, the mayor and his henchman blame the D.J. for attracting the trouble. Spontaneous head explosion is coincidentally how I describe my (lack of) sexual stamina.
As an aside, the D.J. is played by Ian Little. Let's hope that he never has to use a walker for real. His character's skills with a walker are virtually non-existent. His perseverance is on full display however, as he methodically makes his way down several flights of stairs. Also, this is the second Cullen film in a row where Ian Little has sustained a vicious beating. I'd suggest he start an intense regimen of Tai Chi so he can better defend himself.
The aforementioned beating takes place at the hands of The Krackers who have been absent from the film for about an hour. Apparently they are pissed off by their lack of screen-time and decide to take it out on the D.J. Actually, they have been dispensed by the town council at the advice of the mayor.
The final chapter begins with a lengthy romantic sequence involving Saltine and Juanita. No sex this time, just long walks through the park and a quick trip to the battery store to charge up Saltine's leg brace. Did I forget to mention that Saltine has a leg brace made of PVC pipe, springs, batteries and old-style fuses? It's not really important to the plot, but it is pretty damn funny. I also forgot to mention that Saltine is occasionally haunted by a rabbit. We're not talking about "Donnie Darko" or "Harvey". This rabbit consists of a plastic skeleton on a stick that has been retrofitted with a stuffed bunny head.
It's in the final act that the source of the exploding heads and bunny hauntings are revealed. Another biker, from parts unknown, murders a traveling band. He's wearing a denim vest that reads "Voodoo Dolls MC". After the roadside massacre this mysterious traveler turns up in the marijuana fields while Juanita is out tending to the crop. Juanita reveals to the stranger that he's gay. In return, the stranger reveals he is black, he's just got that "pigment disease like Michael Jackson." These revelations seem to develop a bond between the two. They share weed and rum while getting to know each other. The stranger pulls out a bag of goodies to show off to his new friend. Among them is a metal pendulum of the supernatural sort. The stranger hypnotizes Juanita with the pendulum and then, um, his head explodes. That's right, he hypnotized him to explode his own head. He does warn Juanita first, but that seems to be of little value since he was already in a trance.
I'm not sure how to end a film like this and I don't know that Charles E. Cullen is either. The ending he chose left me scratching my head. Come to think of it, head-scratching may have been just the reaction he was going for. There are no answers to the mysteries that lie in the heart of "Bros on Bikes". Even in its conclusion, the best we can do is contemplate the meaning of it all.
So am I recommending this film? Yes I am. Everyone should see this film. Good or bad doesn't matter. It's an experience not to be missed. There are times I wanted to pull my hair out, but there were other times that I laughed myself to tears. What more can you ask from a movie?
"Bros on Bikes" was released on Valentine's day and is available for purchase at Amazon.com.