Benny G (Glenn Robbins), Tommy Boy (Mick Molloy), Bobby Mac (Bob Franklin), Carl (Wayne Hope), and Corey (Gary Eck) were the members of 1980s superstar boy band, BoyTown, who attempt a comeback, targeting the grown up women of their own generation. Benny G's wife Holly (Sally Phillips) - an ex pop star in her own right, now happy in motherhood - is not that keen on the idea, but the boss of their original and now successful record label Marty Boomstein (Lachy Hulme), bankrolls the plan for old times' sake, but after a while the wheels come off the comeback tour and 20 year old secrets come out.
Review by Louise Keller:
The premise that a group of now middle aged blokes with bald patches and paunches re-form the successful 80s band that made them objects of hysteria promises a hearty laugh. But our expectations are not met. There are smiles, a few chuckles, but not many laughs in this gentle and warm-hearted script from comic Mick Molloy and his brother Richard, who brought us Crackerjack in 2002. The central idea works better than the execution in BoyTown, a comic spoof that falls flat, although is not totally out of tune.
Firstly, we meet the five former members of the boy band as they are today. There's Wayne Hope's Carl, the gay construction worker in tight shorts; Bob Franklin's Bobby Mac, the toupee wearing literature lecturer; Gary Eck's Corey's bumbling small-time radio announcer; Mick Molloy's Tommy Boy couch potato, and Glenn Robbins' Benny G who teaches physical education. The characters are likeable enough, but they are never grounded in any kind of reality. Hence the stakes are not real. Lachy Hulme's hot-shot record label manager Marty is simply a caricature.
What works best are the characters that are grounded. Sally Phillips' down-to-earth Holly is warm and real, as is her screen daughter Katie (Sarah Walker), and Lois Ramsey's Gran, who endearingly (but questionably) spends her life ironing Tommy Boy (Molloy)'s underpants. It is the subtle observations of these characters in every day situations that provide the mainstay of the film. Visual gags of old record covers, dinky choreography and cringe costuming are like amusing one-liners, and Gareth Skinner's original song concepts and lyrics ('take as long as you want in the bathroom...') are a hoot. Musically, however, it is hard to go along for the ride, while the sudden BoyTown resurgence and whirlwind world tour is pretty unbelievable, whirling above our heads. And the attempt to include meaningful issues of infidelity and paternity fizzle totally in the artificial environment.
There's an audio commentary on the DVD with Mick Molloy, Wayne Hope, Glen Robbins & Richard Molloy, and you can see deleted scenes, a behind the scenes feature, karaoke subtitles, music videos and more.
Published February 22, 2007
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BOYTOWN: DVD (M)
CAST: Glenn Robbins, Mick Molloy, Bob Franklin, Wayne Hope, Gary Eck, Sally Phillips, Lachy Hulme, Lois Ramsey, Sarah Walker
PRODUCER: Mick Molloy, Greg Sitch
DIRECTOR: Kevin Carlin
SCRIPT: Mick Molloy, Richard Molloy
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Mark Wareham
EDITOR: Angie Higgins
MUSIC: Gareth Skinner
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Penny Southgate
RUNNING TIME: 88 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: October 19, 2006
SPECIAL FEATURES: Audio commentary with Mick Molloy, Wayne Hope, Glen Robbins & Richard Molloy; karaoke subtitles; music videos; deleted scenes; behind the scenes; trailer
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow Home Entertainment
DVD RELEASE: February 21, 2007