Ty Burr
October 26, 1990 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Ghosts Can't Do It

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
performer
Bo Derek, John Derek, Anthony Quinn
genre
Romance, Sci-fi and Fantasy

We gave it a F

The turkeys — movies so wrongheaded they become classics of mind-boggling badness — are made by people whose belief in their own artistry can’t be swayed by mere reality. Think of poor Edward D. Wood Jr., who truly felt his 1953 stinker Glen or Glenda? struck a blow for transvestism, and consider that the befuddled spirit of Wood lives on in the vanity films of John and Bo Derek. The couple has such total faith in John’s talent and Bo’s charisma-neither of which exists-that it’s almost touching.

In their latest effort, the virtually direct-to-video Ghosts Can’t Do It (classy title, n’est-ce pas?), Anthony Quinn tries to liven things up as Bo’s adored older husband, modeled on you-know-who. He kills himself with a shotgun early on, though, and spends most of the movie haunting Bo in poorly filmed close-ups, babbling about his lust for life and trying to convince her to kill a local stud so he can take over the body. (”I don’t know,” she says. ”That’s kinky stuff.”) Bo doesn’t get naked much, but she gives entertainment value by wearing some of the dippiest hats you’ve ever seen: The long, fuzzy earflaps on one make her look a bit like a gorilla imitating Cher.

Although Ghosts rambles from one pseudosexy nonevent to another, the real fun of this flick is in trying to figure out exactly what the hell is going on. Still, any movie that casts Donald Trump as himself already has one foot in Camp Heaven. When, in one scene, The Donald looks into Bo’s vacant blue eyes and says, ”You’re too pretty to be bad,” that crash you hear is good taste collapsing in the face of unstoppable kitsch. F

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