Plot: Two rednecks fresh off a hunt are driving like maniacs on a crowded road, almost forcing a tanker truck into a serious accident. Soon however, the hicks are pulled over and as he passes, the truck driver laughs and honks, which causes the rednecks to chase him down and threaten him with violence. He is so shaken up by this, the truck driver soon veers off the road, crashing through the fence of an animal park, which leads to a flood of animals. Now lions, tigers, bears, rhinos, elephants, and yes folks, even the sadistic ostriches are on the loose and while park officials are on the task, it is a Herculean task to recapture all the escaped wildlife. As the animals roam the open landscape, they encounter all manner of people and other animals, often with intense, violent results. As if the current dangers weren’t enough, the rednecks are back as well, looking to do some big game hunting. Can the park officials keep the public and the animals safe, or will mankind be overthrown by the animal overlords?
Entertainment Value: A true epic of made for television movie proportions, The Beasts Are on the Streets is a bonkers experience that never fails to entertain. A animal apocalypse is triggered by rednecks, unleashing a torrent of over the top, eye popping scenes and wild moments. The story is of course ridiculous, as a single fence seems to hold back the entire animal park’s population, but with bananas cinema like this, the details simply don’t matter. I do have to mention, these animal scenes are quite real and can be uncomfortable to watch, but the movie says it was well supervised and animals weren’t harmed. This leads to scenes like a tiger and a bear having an epic battle at a carnival, lions casually strolling through a hospital, ostriches working with rhinos to topple asshole motorists, and countless other very real, even surreal moments of animal chaos. This kind of movie will never be made again, likely for good reasons, but it does offer some incredible moments of spectacle. Even beyond the beasts on the loose, the movie has great camp value, with colorful characters, humorous production gaffes, and just surreal scenes. I had an absolute blast with this movie, so for fans of wild cinema or when animals attack movies, you need to see this one.
No nakedness. There’s no time for romance with wild animals on the prowl, though we do get a little relationship drama. No real blood aside from some non graphic gun shots, but there is ample action to be found. A roadside explosion, tranq hunts, and of course, the wealth of offbeat and memorable animal scenes. Rhinos ramming into cars, lions harassing parrots, a bear chasing children, a lion stuck in an inferno, and a shadowy lion showdown are all present, but that’s just a sample of the madness in this one. I’d say the dialogue is overly dramatic, but I suppose with wild animals on the loose, it would be rather dramatic. The interactions between the wild animals and various citizens provide some humorous moments, such as an old lady in her nightgown trying to shoo away an ostrich. I think my personal highlight was an elderly rich woman stunned to learn that elephants were in her yard, but she handles it with such grace and humor. Also get some redneck talk and Philip Michael Thomas is here, so not bad. On the crazy side, we have the bananas animal scenes, including a child cowboy playing rodeo with an ostrich and a lion entering an operating room during open heart surgery. Add in the camp and cheese, and this one puts up some solid wackiness. I also have to mention the ridiculous wig worn by the park official’s daughter, just priceless.
Overall Insanity: 8/10