THE LAST AMERICAN VIRGIN is the cult-classic 1980’s teen comedy about close-knit group of high school friends, Gary (Lawrence Monoson, Mask), the shy guy; his friend Rick (Steve Antin, The Goonies), the ladies man; and David (Joe Rubbo, Hot Chili), the comic foil, and their exploits in pursuit of love… or at the very least… their first time! Also starring Diane Franklin (Better Off Dead), Louisa Moritz (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest) and Kimmy Robertson (“Twin Peaks”), this funny, dramatic and nostalgic time capsule chronicles the ups and downs of friendship, romance, and the bittersweet memories of youth, set to a classic 80’s soundtrack.
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The Last American Virgin returns to Blu-Ray via the MVD Rewind Collection with a 1080p transfer which appears to be sourced from a solid older master. The film was previously released in the US by Olive Films and overseas courtesy of Arrow Video. From what we can tell, it appears the source is likely the same across these releases, so any differences are basically negligible. This setting of the film largely takes place during the daytime or in brightly lit rooms with certain hues that radiate off of the screen. The palette is pleasantly suffused as it captures the bright colors of the outfits and the pops of neon lighting. The white levels are pretty stable with no digital noise popping up in the sun baked locale. The black levels in the nighttime adventures and in the shadows are admirable with a fair amount of depth and only sporadic banding.
The transfer maintains a decent consistency throughout its presentation with only the odd instance of fluctuations in density. The transfer does reveal some fetching detail in the production design of various interiors and within the texture of clothing. This transfer maintains a pleasing amount of organic film grain that does not appear to have been digitally tweaked or robbed of its texture. The core source is in good shape with no instances of any significant damage to ruin the experience, although there is the expected amount of minute nicks and scratches present. This is a perfectly pleasant presentation of the film even without a new scan.
MVD Entertainment brings us this new Blu-Ray with an LPCM 2.0 track that delivers in all of the ways it needs to. One of the biggest selling points of this film is the knockout soundtrack. From the opening moments, the music never lacks in power or fidelity as it radiates from the speakers. The exchanges of dialogue hold up favorably, coming though crisp and clear without being stepped on by the tunes or sound effects. Environmental effects are fairly delineated including engines and classroom chatter. There is not much in the way of notable age related wear and tear. MVD Entertainment has done a great job here. Optional English subtitles are provided on this disc.
- The First American Remake – Interview with Boaz Davidson: A 36-minute interview with the writer/director in which he discusses his early interest in movies, his first steps into filmmaking, making a very personal depiction of his life with Lemon Popsicle, the decision to adapt the story for America, the tweaks that had to be made for Americans, the approach to the sex scenes, the emotional moments conjured by the ending, the importance of the music and more.
- Memories Of A Pizza Boy – Interview with Lawrence Monoson: A 26-minute interview with the star in which discusses the role as his breakthrough, the audition process, the direction of Boaz Davidson, the most memorable scenes, the dramatic shift in the narrative, small moments that bother him, the connection he had with Diane Franklin, murmurs of a sequel and more.
- Babe Of The Eighties – Interview with Diane Franklin: A 21-minute conversation with the actress in which she discusses her career around this time, her interest in the realistic elements of the script, justifying the ending of the movie for herself, working with Boaz Davidson, memories of her co-stars, shooting the nudity, the professional nature of everyone, the place of abortion in the film and more.
- In Praise Of Smaller Movies – Interview with Cinematographer Adam Greenberg: A 21-minute conversation with the cinematographer in which he discusses his preference for smaller productions, his collaborations with Boaz Davidson, his output in general, working with the performers to keep them at ease, the shooting locations and more.
- Photo Gallery: A collection of stills from the production of the film are included here.
- Trailers: This disc provides the Original Theatrical Trailer (1:55) and the TV Spot (0:28) for The Last American Virgin. The disc also features trailers for other MVD releases including The Go-Go Boys, Men At Work, Ski Patrol and At Close Range.
- Poster: A fold-out poster of the cover art is included in the case.
The Last American Virgin is a teen sex comedy that stands out within the well saturated genre. The vignette-like approach to the exploits of this group of friends lends itself to decent laughs and titillating engagements. What is less expected in the powerful tonal shift of the last half hour which takes it from fairly disposable to utterly captivating. You will feel a certain type of way about these characters as the credits finish rolling, but the fact that the movie sticks in your mind and encourages lengthy discussions is a testament to what it achieves. MVD Entertainment has offered up a Blu-Ray with a solid A/V presentation and some worthwhile special features. This is a movie that deserves to be seen simply for how much it breaks with tradition, and this new release is the perfect way to experience it. Recommended
The Last American Virgin is currently available to purchase on Blu-Ray.
Note: Images presented in this review are not reflective of the image quality of the Blu-Ray.
Disclaimer: MVD Entertainment has supplied a copy of this disc free of charge for review purposes. All opinions in this review are the honest reactions of the author.
Dillon is most comfortable sitting around in a theatre all day watching both big budget and independent movies.