Barbarella is basically a bubbly female James Bond who wears a number of different skin tight space outfits, and somehow usually finds a way to lose varying degrees of said outfits throughout the course of her adventure.. In fact, the movie gets kicked off by having our title character float around in zero gravity and strip her clothes off as the opening credits "try" to cover up some of her more naughty bits.
This is not really a good movie, and it is quite campy, silly, and dumb, but even then, it is quite entertaining, and reasonably fun. The set and costume designs are really cheeky, the music is typical 60s poon palace music, and, despite not doing that great of an acting job, Jane Fonda definitely has a wonderful, likable, and certainly memorable presence as the title character. I also loved the hardly subtle dirty humor and sexual undertones here, definitely making this a product of its time.
If you're bored and want to kill some time (and maybe a couple of brain cells), and don't mind settling for dopey crap, then this would be a wise choice for viewing. It's not great, but it does at least put forth a little bit of effort, even if it ultimately comes up short.
The score seems to have been put together by the lounge singer Tom Jones in his tackiest phase. Jones seems also to have directed. What a catastrophic failure "Barbarella" is. This is my first Roger Vadim film, and it may be my last.
As an example of self-consciously "bad" cinema that I like: John Waters' early stuff. Waters, who was starting to make films around 1968, has vastly more imagination than Vadim had. Vadim died in 2000, incidentally.
I don't even really know where to begin with this one. The space adventures of Jane Fonda's sexy Barbarella are hard to review, because this has to be one of the most WTF movies that I've ever seen in my life. Every scene either had me laughing out loud or scratching my head and wondering what kind of powerful narcotics the writer/director/everyone involved with making this was OD'ing on.
The story is ridiculous. Barbarella is some kind of space traveler/astronaut, and she's been charged with finding a missing scientist named Durand Durand. That's right Durand Durand. Along the way, she encounters ravenous dolls, a man in three-fourths of a Chewbacca outfit, a blind angel (one of the more inspired and hilarious parts of the movie), a rousing musical performance that she ends up participating in in a rather intimate fashion, an invisible key to an invisible wall, and about 10 different wardrobe changes. It has to be seen to be believed.
The whole movie is campy, from the special effects, to the sets, to the costumes to the music. And the surreal plot and characters are just the icing on the cake. If you're fond of the particular brand of trippy 60's weirdness, then Barbarella is a must-see. It's like Star Wars mixed with Austin Powers, a hot blonde, and some LSD.
Unbelievably silly it has some fantastic lines of dialogue like "de-crucify the angel or I melt your face!" Great characters, a killer lava lamp, fur lined space ship and a villain called Duran Duran.
The evil organ of desire scene, and the opening strip tease still manage to be erotic, even though this film is dated. Cult with a capital C, this is never going to appeal to a mainstream audience, and yet remains my favourite movie of all time. A classic. And very pretty pretty.