Michael Delahoyde, PhD

Professor of English

Pterodactyl Women From Beverly Hills

PTERODACTYL WOMAN
FROM BEVERLY HILLS
(1997)


Notes: 50thStreet Films / Troma Entertainment. 97 minutes.
Pixie Chandler: Beverly D’Angelo
Dick Chandler: Brad Wilson
Sam / Salvadore Dali: Brion James
Susie: Moon Zappa
Dr. Egbert: Stephen McHattie
Tommy: Aron Eisenberg
Jenny: Sharon Martin
Dr. Harold Harold: Carmine Zozzora

Executive Producers: John F. Remark, Jay Rifkin
Produced: Philippe Mora, Bruce Critchley
Written and Directed: Philippe Mora
Co-Producer and Special Effects: Scott Billups
Music: Roy Hay.


Summary: Wesee “Beverly Hills: Two Million Years Ago” – that is,footage from Planet of Dinosaurs (1978). In present day, Dick Chandler and his coworker discover fossilized pterodactyl eggsbut are cursed by a witch doctor for defiling sacred land: “You’ll be in deep waste matter discharged from the alimentary canal.” Dick’s wife will become a pterodactyl and the other paleontologist turns into a lizard. This is dismissed initially as an experience of sunstroke.

Pixie Chandler starts acting weird, unattributinglyquoting Dorothy Parker (“Trapped like a trap in a trap”)and telling her friend Susie, “Don’t disempower me with infantilisms.”Eggs make her uneasy and when she is disgusted by marinated chickenfeet she decides to become a “vegetarian” (except sheloves fish). She dreams she was flying over L.A. as a pterodactyl,ends up in a tree in the morning, lusts after raw carp, and indeedtransforms into a werepterodactyl.

Pixie and Susie visit a guru, Sam, who servesblue martinis and tells Pixie to reconcile herself to her occasionaldinosaur form. A government cryptozoologist is on the case andPixie is convinced to turn over an egg she has laid. Her familychanges its collective mind and retrieves the hatchling, as Dickrecalls the curse in the desert.

Sam visits Susie in his own pterodactyl formas the family ventures off in search of the witch doctor towards”dreamtime land” where they ironically point out stockfootage, claiming to see “Stoposaurus Motioncus.” Itturns out that Sam had dug up the witch doctor’s great grandmother,but Pixie is off the hook if the family leaves the baby pterodactylthere. Sam wanders off into the desert, and maybe it was all asunstroke dream again.


Commentary:This film is weird and good. The humor is bizarre and usuallynot forced. And the Blue Martini song certainly belongs on theCD collection of dinosaur movies’ greatest hits.