The Shrimp On the Barbie

The video company is hyping this farce as if it were the second coming of Ernst Lubitsch. But The Shrimp on the Barbie, filmed in Australia, is not nearly as slick and smart-looking as the ads and posters for it in the video stores. And as a comic lead, Cheech Marin is certainly no Cary Grant, although he’s hardly the worst thing in this film. That honor goes to the silly plot (a spoiled socialite — Emma Samms of Dynasty fame — fakes a romance with dirt-poor Marin to spite her dad but then falls in love with the guy). In fact, Marin has a couple of genuinely funny moments here, doing his patented stoned slob routine (which should give you some idea of the film’s originality) and in a brief turn as a Pakistani Elvis impersonator.

Otherwise, this is sub-Bowery Boys stuff, limply helmed by ”Alan Smithee,” a nom de plume used from time to time by directors who, for one reason or another, want to be dissociated from films like The Shrimp on the Barbie.

The Shrimp On the Barbie
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