Ah, the 70s. A simpler time, when a person could go to a cheerleader camp, have themselves a lovely little chainsaw massacre and biker gangs roamed the great plains. Well, times have changed and, sadly, biker gangs are now as scarce as the mighty buffalo...and nearly as hairy! Well, let's reach way back in the old movie vault and check out a movie from a time when the mighty biker roamed freely and only a few, strong bare-footed men were willing to stand up to them. That's right, it's the 1967 classic, Born Losers and it'll have you wanting to face off with your local biker gang.
This is officially the first 'Billy Jack' movie, and tells the story of a small California town that's being terrorized by a biker gang...the Born Losers, naturally. Well, after the gang attacks and rapes several local college girls, the local police want them to testify to put the evil hog jockeys in prison. The problem comes when the cops don't put the bikers in a holding cell and they set off to intimidate all the witnesses in town. Now, the only person who isn't afraid of these hairy ne'er-do-wells is a Vietnam vet/Native American, Billy Jack. Billy thinks that right is right and wrong is wrong and to hell with the law if it won't protect the innocent and sets off to protect one witness and stop the bikers from winning the day.
Now, if this sounds simple, then you're right...it is! But, that's the beauty of Born Losers, it's a straight forward 70s revenge movie, and it started the Billy Jack cycle...which, I believe caused Tom Laughlin (the actor who played Billy) to lose his mind. You see, after the sequel to Born Losers, Billy Jack, Tom was suddenly a b-movie star and the third movie, The Trial Of Billy Jack, clocked in at over 2 hours long and killed the franchise...not that there really was such a thing as a franchise film series in the 70s.
I'm giving Born Losers 4 out of 4 cigars, it's a pretty cool little action/revenge flick that doesn't pretend to be anything that it's not. And, let's face it, who doesn't like to see evil bikers get the crap kicked out of them!