We all love to turn our brains off every now and then. Why?
So we can watch a decidedly horrible film, that’s why. Sometimes life can get the better of us;
taxes, bills, family issues… what better way to deal with our everyday dilemmas
than by forgetting all about them for two hours?
I look at a film like Bio-Dome and am flabbergasted to
think that some people actually take the film seriously. Any film that has two characters farting in
order to guess what they had for dinner cannot and should not be taken
seriously. Sure, by traditional
standards, it’s a bad film. Make no
mistake, I am not defending Bio-Dome as a post-modern masterpiece in
disguise. It’s as bad as you’ve
heard. But should that always be a bad
Bio-Dome is a quintessential film of the 90s. It has the fashion, the speech and the
attitude that made the MTV decade so memorable and infamous. In many ways, this horrible film can be
viewed as a time capsule of sorts. Sure,
the story is wafer thin… a couple of numbskulls unwittingly find themselves inside
a bio-dome, a highly sensitive economic community run by scientists that
monitors the growth and development of the environment, and must learn to love
the earth in the process. That’s
it. From then on, Pauly Shore’s Bud and
Stephen Baldwin’s Doyle (it isn’t a 90s film if it doesn’t star a Baldwin
brother other than Alec) run amok as only they can.
Simply put, Bio-Dome is a fun little movie; the type that,
if I’m channel surfing, I will gladly watch to waste some time. Besides, it wasn’t made to be anything other
than a waste of time. Random pop culture
references, crude humor, Shore’s stilted and on the verge of laughter brand of
acting, nonsensical developments in the story… the film was meant to entertain
at the most basic, immature level. I can
hardly fault a film solely for doing that.
Plus, it stars one of the greatest asshole actors in modern
cinema (and I say that with great respect) in William Atherton. His name may not be familiar one, but if you’ve
seen Ghostbusters, you’ll know him as Walter “Dickless” Peck, a member of the
United States Environmental Agency who unwittingly unleashed the captured
ghosts from their containment grid and caused complete anarchy in New York City.
Atherton plays the stereotypically smug villain incredibly
well and he does the same in Bio-Dome.
He is the perfect foil for Bud and Doyle, as his arrogance matches with stupidity
almost to a tee. Since Ghostbusters,
it seems that Atherton has always been cast as the obligatory weasel, something
that perfectly explains the nature of his character in Bio-Dome. And best of all, he seems to be in on the joke,
which makes the immaturity level in the film tolerable.
Other actors in the film include Joey Lauren Adams, Kylie
Minogue and Jack Black. It’s weird to
see them in a film like this, but they actually blend in quite well.
Bio-Dome actually gets surprisingly more and more
outlandish as it continues, but that’s just part of the charm. The film is populated with imbeciles, idiots
and knuckleheads (a mainstay in all of Shore’s films apparently), yet it is
surprisingly entertaining… only if you’re in the mood for that sort of