14 April 2003 | sweetride1960
Worst anti-fascist musical ever made
This is mostly a political statement with some of the worst directed and staged song and dance numbers ever. Since the film is 50% song and dance, would it be too much to ask for the dancing to match the beat or the singers to lip-sync properly? The director, writer, and producer of STRANGERS IN PARADISE, Ulli Lommel, also stars as a mesmerist from WWII Germany named Sage, who is cryogenically frozen in the 1940s to escape Hitler (also played by Ulli Lommel). A group of crazy California fascists thaw out Sage in the 1980s and try to get him to hypnotize gays and punks into being upstanding citizens. There are a few effective moments in the movie, like a record burning and a scene of Sage hypnotizing the fascists into punks. But really! The songs are imitation Doors songs for the most part, very dated sounding even in the 80s, and Ulli Lommel the director gets a very poor performance out of Ulli Lommel the actor. Sage is so out of it most of the time and can barely speak in a whisper, and then he has nothing interesting to say! The rest of the acting is designed so none of the actors would upstage the zombie-like lead actor, and all of the musical numbers are very messy. It seems to be a movie that Ulli Lommel made for Ulli Lommel, and maybe his grandkids would enjoy it but I thought it was a missed opportunity. See THE PRODUCERS instead.