The Apple (1980)

Hey, all the things you could want from an off-beat Rock Opera, right?

The plot seems to make some glaringly accurate predictions as to the future of the entertainment industry. Only a handful of singers are hand-picked by record execs, and the cost is their soul. Their images are rebuilt, and the agents control the mass media.

This seems like an insightful and redeeming aspect, until you realize that the music industry hasn’t changed much in two decades. The same conglomerates that created the Backstreet Boys are responsible for assembling and promoting The Village People, among other crummy acts of the late 70s. Filmed at the trailing end of the disco revolution, it’s easy to see where this movie got it’s direction.

The lyrics are terrible, and the sound is forgettable. Other than the few songs sung by Mr. Boogalow, the lyrics and flow lack any hook to keep the viewer interested. I have this feeling I only liked Boogalow’s performances because of his exotic appearance and accent.

Just one sample from these horrid tracks:

“It’s a natural, natural, natural desire To meet an actual, actual, actual vampire”

Finally, the biggest scene in the film is completely ruined by sound recording. Those of you who think that acoustic theaters are a waste of space should watch the scene after the party where the couple are trying to sign a contract with Mr. Boogalow. There’s a HUGE song and dance number held inside a massive lobby, complete with flashy sequins and a bag of chips. The only problem is, the entire song is recored INSIDE THE LOBBY, so what should be a massively powerful performance ends up sounding pale and hollow.

Word to the wise: sometimes studio voice-overs for a scene are a good thing, especially when you cannot control the staging environment