Tom Hanks. Star of many different genres of film and can seemingly slip into any role with ease. Everything from Toy Story and Castaway to Saving Private Ryan, Hanks will have you captivated no matter what he does. He is the absolute top tier of actors in Hollywood today and among the most versatile. What better way to prove such versatility than with this film. Sure, it’s one of his first major films and if you’re looking for heart, depth and gravitas that you’re accustomed to with Tom Hanks, you’ll find none of that here. This falls into the wheelhouse of Porky’s, Meatballs or any other 80′s sex comedy, though in my opinion is easily the best in its field. Ladies and Gentlemen, brace yourselves for a Bachelor Party you won’t soon forget.
I saw this at an age where I didn’t understand sex or drugs but still found it beyond hilarious, and with a rewatch every few years it has lost only a little of its comedic elements with the passage of time. Many films viewed today from your early informative years and also from nostalgic point of view can sometimes not turn out the way you were expecting, often ruining the experience altogether. I watched it too much as a youngster and now it’s ingrained in my head (especially all the boob shots) so I don’t know if it’s funny because of the memory of it or whether it actually IS funny, I don’t know. What I do know is that for me, this film still is an absolute riot and certainly doesn’t take itself too seriously.
This 1984 film, directed by Neal Israel and starring Tom Hanks as Rick Gassko, the manchild school bus driver soon to be married to Tawny Kitean’s extremely hot fiancée Debbie (drooool!!!) has a bachelor party thrown for him by his friends before the big day. Debbie and her friends, while at her Hen’s Night, decide to crash the party dressed as hookers to make sure Rick is behaving himself and not “straying from the path” so to speak. To add to this, Debbie’s father who despises Rick with a passion is looking for any excuse to show his daughter the suspected scumbag whom she is marrying and employs the son he wishes he had, Cole, to try and barter for Debbie’s hand. Eventually the bachelor party veers out of control, as does Cole’s obsession for Debbie and hilarious consequences ensue.
Bachelor Party has so many moments of what makes 80′s sex comedies great. Plenty of debauchery, drugs, alcohol, Porsche tampering, donkey overdosing (see above pic), boobies, psycho ex-boyfriends and dick in a hot dog bun fun. Rick’s group of friends all fill each role perfectly, even if it’s blatantly stereotypical. There’s the batshit crazy mechanic who’s very good at quickly organizing resprays, the good looking but brainless hunk (Michael Dudikoff believe it or not), the little nerdy guy with high voice and no luck with women, the chronic depressive junkie who is always trying to kill himself, his best friend who’s a charming ladies man and brains of the whole operation and his “married to a dragon”, severely sex-starved brother. Together they are like The Avengers of bad taste and awesome parties.
The party itself goes from being a few friends in a fancy hotel room watching some porn and drinking beer to a few people coming, then a few more, eventually turning into the mother of all parties with people packed in like sardines. Also worthy of mention is some cracking set pieces including the aforementioned hot dog bun scene at the strip club which is pissfunny, a 3D fight in the cinema, the donkey show, Debbie’s dad getting caught doing some bondage, Rick’s moment of truth with an ex-hot-as-hell-girlfriend and dangling Cole from the balcony with beds sheets. There really are too many to mention, the film has a long train of set ups.
Bachelor Party was one of the more pleasing bargain bin finds I’ve ever had. It stands up to the test of time incredibly well. Hanks plays Rick to perfection as the man who never grew up as well as the rest of the cast delivering on the crazy premise, most notably is Debbie’s dad. His contempt for Rick is monumental and some great comedic moments happen between them in the beginning scenes of the film. Sure, the acting sometimes goes from over the top to wooden from various cast members but what do you expect from a 1984 sex comedy?
I highly recommend this if you’re into these sorts of films. I can get tired of this genre quite fast, but this film always manages to please on rewatches. Go and check it out if you’ve never witnessed Tom Hanks in a role you’ll never see him in again. This one gets a high three and a half stars out of five, I say high knowing that as much as I would like to give it four because of my nostalgic love for it and the fact that it’s actually good, giving any sex comedy four out of five stars just…. kinda…. doesn’t…. compute.