The Rube’s Review: Prayer of the Rollerboys (1990)
So The Rube was thinking: what ever happened to rollerblades? I remember as a teen, everyone had a pair. Some people used them as a form of exercise, others used them for play (especially hockey during offseason). I had them because as a teen I used to be a big hockey/ice skating fan (The RUBE on ICE!). Though I would rather go ice skating, when I wanted a quick skating fix I would queue up my favorite mix tape in my Walkman, slap on my black Bauer rollerblades and skate up and down the Venice boardwalk… and then *POOF!* everyone just decided to hang them in the closet never to speak of them again. Ah well, at least we’ll always have the 90s.
Prayer of the Rollerboys is your run of the mill futuristic anti-drug/anti-hate that is very reminiscent of an episode of 21 Jump Street. In the future, the United States is on the verge of national bankruptcy and with very few jobs out there for the middle class, most Americans are struggling and live-in centers, makeshift shanty towns or tents and trailers. Griffen (Corey Haim) is a lucky/unlucky to have a job delivering pizzas. While doing a pizza run to the BAD side of Los Angeles (armed with only a straw hat, a M-16, and a post apocalyptic battlevan), he comes to a burning crack house and saves the life of a “Rollerboy,” one of the local in-line skate gangs that are trying to buy back the streets… for America!
Turns out, the Leader of the Rollarboys is Griffen’s childhood best friend, Gary Lee. In return for risking his life to save on of his generals, Gary Lee takes “Griff” under his wing and explains that it’s time for (White) American’s to take control of their country. With the help of slinging a new drug called Mist, heavy recruitment and “The Day of the Rope” coming soon, they will victorious! …but what Mr. Lee doesn’t know is that his new best friend is being forced undercover (by the lovely Patricia Arquette) for the Police/FBI to take down these rouge gang of rapscallions before it’s too late. Oh, and there’s some boring crap about Griff’s kid brother getting strung out and their African American father figure being beat to shit by the Rollerboys.
One of my favorite things about this movie is that apparently EVERY CHILD KNOWS HOW TO SKATE and how someone can easily fire a gun of any caliber while rollerblading and not be knocked down by the recoil. Overall, for all of the film’s heavy preaching, the it really isn’t that bad of a movie. The story is actually well written and very intriguing, I especially enjoy the drug lab trailer scenes with Bango (Mark Pellegrion). Yeah, Corey Haim is terrible but the acting ability of his co-star Chris Collet really makes up for it… kinda sad that he didn’t make it big in Hollywood.
Even though it only received a limited DVD release, you should be able to find this gem at your local hole in the wall rental shop or online for a couple of bucks. Also, if you’re looking a equally good movie to make a bad night double feature, I would recommend Class of 1999, which I’ll save for a later Rube’s Review.