What a glorious movie this is. A celebration of all that makes human beings what they are, plus wonderful home-made sets, sleazy rock n roll music, ultra-violence, a psychedelic colour scheme and never a dull moment. It’s very obviously a labour of love for all involved, and if it comes to a festival, blu-ray store, or streaming service near you, you should definitely watch it.
In the town of Dullsville, a bunch of sleazy methed-out assholes invade a gay bar and beat the crap out of everyone inside – but the manager has a business card for someone who’ll be able to help. That someone is “The Cockslinger”, aka Sir Beauregard, aka Beau, and his Maritime Muscle Services, which in the beginning is just one man – Reginald Lumpton III, aka Lump, a character who the promotional materials say is based on a legendary 19th century prize-fighter and dandy. Off they pop to help out the people of Dullsville, and an indication this isn’t going to be your run-of-the-mill movie is when the fight turns into gore-drenched mayhem. I’ve not seen a baseball bat so violently rammed somewhere it shouldn’t be rammed for quite some time! Beau and Lump leave the homophobes a bloody and beaten mess, and kidnap one of them…I’m not entirely sure why, if I’m being honest.
This isn’t the real plot, just a delightful place-setter for a story about Kitten Navidad (B-movie legend who was last seen by the ISCFC in “Red Lips”) as Beau’s mother. She’s in charge of a whorehouse where GILFs satisfy the needs of the rich and powerful, with her fame and fortune the result of owning the Golden Cock, which isn’t a metaphor, it’s a magic penis made out of gold. Turns out the cock belongs to Hijra (played by rock-n-roll superstar King Khan), who’s part of some Asian porn ring but is a good guy…only the cock is stolen by Kitten’s second-in-command Billie Jean, who takes it to Wanda the Giantess, her lover, who has all sorts of world domination plans.
The rest of the movie is every bit as lurid and amazing as that paragraph would have you believe. Beau enlists his old friend Salome and works on turning the kidnapped homophobe, one Squirt, to the side he’s been repressing, and tries to restore his mother’s fortunes by fighting Wanda and taking back the golden cock and all the other jewels that were stolen from her. There’s literally never a dull moment.
Think of it as mix of Derek Jarman and Ted V Mikels, with a healthy dose of good old rock-n-roll mixed in. Writer/produer/director/designer Josh Sinbad Collins has made videos and worked with a who’s-who of underground r-n-r’s finest – Billy Childish, The Cramps, The Trashmen, The Mummies, The 5,6,7,8’s, and The Monks. The Mummies make a brief appearance in “Fags…” and I was cheering the entire time – they’re one of my favourite bands ever; plus, a majority of the cast seem to be drawn from that same milieu, in similar bands and burlesque troops (most notably the great King Khan, of course). He’s also worked with Ray Dennis Steckler, maybe the sleaziest of all the old-school b-movie directors, featured by us in “One More Time” and “The Hollywood Strangler Meets The Skid Row Slasher”. He’s worked for Derek Jarman, too, way back when (I just discovered). Basically, it’s good stuff from queer cinema, sleazy b-movies, and rock-n-roll, thrown in a pot and stirred with a gold cock.
The invasion of “Freaky Town” at the end is great, showing the model work off to its fullest. It’s not remotely realistic, it’s better than that – grungy and home made and wonderfully colourful. I have very little even slightly negative to say about this wonderful movie.
All manner of lifestyles are shown and enjoyed, although gay ones are obviously front and centre. Beau and Salome indulge in some very athletic and public sex, and then Beau walks through his mother’s knocking shop and seems comfortable round all the hetero action going on in there. Even though every lesbian in the movie is a villain, they seem to have a fine time with each other too – and there are many unclassifiable creatures enjoying themselves in every way. It’s a riot of gender and sexuality and it’s wonderful! Plus, you know, there’s people getting their heads caved in with a golden cock, shown in grotesque detail.
I’ve barely scratched the surface of the sheer amount of stuff on display – the numerous gangs, the cult who think Salome is the resurrected god/dess “Shemali”, El Vez, the Bollywood number, just what Beau is packing “down there”, and so on. I guess if you’re going to make movies as rarely as Collins (his other directing effort was 1997’s “Pervirella”), you’d better make the most of it.
Kudos to everyone involved, because I bet they didn’t make much money and they must have worked hard as hell. Chris Asimos is superb as Beau, King Khan is great and Aimee Nichols as Wanda the Giantess is really good too. But really, apart from Kitten Navidad (who never could act, even when she wasn’t just phoning it in in stunt-casting gigs like this), it’s a fine cast.
With people like Chuck Tingle re-inventing the erotic gay novel, and movies like this showing us what a wonderful rainbow world we could be living in if we just abandoned our small-minded morality, it shows how diverse entertainment has become – that we can have weird parodies of and homages to gay entertainment, and not ones that need to exist in any sort of ghetto. But scumbags – rich, powerful scumbags – are trying to roll back the gains that have been made by exceedingly brave and dedicated LGBT+ activists, so we ought to have a grand time watching movies like “Fags In The Fast Lane” and then be devoted to making sure we can live in a future with many more movies like it.
Rating: thumbs up
PS – I’m not super-versed in this world, so if I’ve said something stupid or offensive (I hope not, but you never know) please consider it a teaching moment for me and not that I’m an idiot. Also, any homophobes reading this can stop visiting this site for ever.