Picks and Pans Review: No Holds Barred

updated 06/19/1989 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 06/19/1989 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Hulk Hogan, Joan Severance

To buy a ticket to this movie is to hang around your neck a sign that says, "I am pathetic. I am desperate. I do not know the difference between entertainment and a poke in the eye with a sharp stick."

Racist, misogynist, dumb, sadistic, lazy and tiresome, the film is about a big bout between a huge heroic white guy and a huge villainous black guy.

Hogan is, of course, the hero. Among pro wrestling's living caricatures, he seems one of the most good-humored. This movie, however, mostly highlights his bald spot, his tendency to use vicious wheezing as his main acting technique and the immense size of his head. (During his love scenes with the big-eyed, long-legged Severance, one thinks of a male walrus necking with a lady antelope.)

Hogan is a supernoble wrestler who's lured into a no-rules fight with Tiny (Extreme Prejudice) Lister. Lister spends the movie snarling and has an eye problem that, given the wild faces he puts on, makes it seem as if he is making fun of crosseyed people. Goading Hogan to fight is TV exec Kurt (Miracle Mile) Fuller, who uses Severance as his representative until she realizes how dastardly he is.

The film was directed by Thomas J. Wright, lead director for TV's Beauty and the Beast. He is expert at rendering head-bashing, crotch-kicking and wheelchair-knocking-over scenes. (PG-13)

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