UNDERGROUND USA: INDIE CINEMA OF THE 80s - Eating Raoul (w/ Mary Woronov, Robert Beltran & Susan Saiger in person!)

Presented by Friday Night Frights

Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive

An outlandish mixture of ’50s-themed high camp, ’70s Robert Downey, Sr.-style bizarro satire and ’80s gross-out sex romp, the indie hit Eating Raoul is Cult Film Director Hall Of Famer Paul Bartel’s finest hour. Bartel and Mary Woronov star as a sexually conservative couple (“Paul” and “Mary”, natch) who, after they need quick cash to open their dream restaurant, devise an makeshift S&M operation to lure rich horndogs to their deaths. Beyond its savagely funny swipes at the Sexual Revolution (featuring squads of lecherous swingers, all whacked out like Mr. Farley from “Three’s Company” on PCP), the film is as much a love letter to our city as a prime Cheech & Chong vehicle, for it’s crammed full of nutty local characters and enough unmistakably L.A. locales to fill an entire season of Huell Howser specials. Woronov easily steamrolls over the film’s population of wackos and sleazoids with aplomb; with her distinct mixture of understated deadpan comedy, soft sensuality and no-bullshit ingenuity, Mary’s radiant heat has ensured that Eating Raoul remains a “classic cult classic” (Rob Lineberger, DVD Verdict).

Dir. Paul Bartel, 1982, 35mm, 90 min.

Watch the Cinefamily original trailer!