I feel like I grew up with Susan Sarandon and Goldie Hawn. In 1974, I watched a TV movie called The Last of the Belles. I fell in love with the young woman playing the title role (Sarandon). The following year Sarandon's career started to take off when she starred as Janet (Slut) in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I saw Goldie even earlier, in 1968, at the beginning of her career in Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In. Of course, since then Sarandon has five Oscar nominations (Atlantic City, Thelma & Louise, Lorenzo's Oil, The Client and Dead Man Walking) and Hawn has two (Cactus Flower and Private Benjamin). They've both won once (Cactus Flower and Dead Man Walking). And they are both total babes! So, naturally, I was looking forward to seeing them together in The Banger Sisters.
What a disappointment! I don't know where to start in describing it. Apparently, the director, Bob Dolman, didn't know where to start either. It's his first time as a director. The Banger Sisters is about two women (Sarandon and Hawn) who were groupies back in the late sixties following rock groups such as The Doors. The ,two women eventually drifted apart and Sarandon is now a repressed housewife and mother of two teenage daughters (Erika Christensen, Eva Amurri (Sarandon's real-life daughter)). Hawn hasn't changed at all and is still working at the same bar where Jim Morrison once passed out on top of her. But suddenly Hawn is fired and decides to look up her old friend. So far so good. But that's only the first 5 minutes. Unfortunately, the next hour of the movie is mostly taken up with a very uninteresting subplot about Hawn and a guy that she picks up on the road (Geoffrey Rush). Rush is OK. He is also heavily nominated for Oscars having three nominations and one win. But who wants to see him and Hawn doing anything, when the trailer for the movie promised that this was a movie about Hawn and Sarandon! I'm not sure but I think this subplot gets more screen time than the supposed main plot. In fact, if you really want to see The Banger Sisters, I advise arriving at the theatre two thirds of the way through the movie.
Actually, the last bit of the
movie where Goldie and Susan finally get together isn't that much better
but it's such a relief that it seems good. And Hawn and Sarandon are good
together for the few minutes that they are together onscreen. The Banger
Sisters should have been a good movie. The whole Geoffrey Rush
subplot should have eighty-sixed. The movie should have started with
Hawn encountering Sarandon's daughter (Erika Christensen) tripping LSD
after her prom and then taken off from there. The whole relationship
of Sarandon with her daughters, which should have been juxtaposed with
her past with Hawn at the same age, is barely touched on. After wasting
most of the movie on Geoffrey Rush, there isn't much time for character
development so we see Sarandon suddenly snap back to her sixties self without
much motivation other than drinking a glass of wine. The only really
entertaining scene, other than Hawn and Sarandon dancing together in a
bar, is when Sarandon brings out her Rock Cock photo collection.
I'd like to recommend this movie but I can't. Don't go see it!