SUPERGIRL Helen Slater, as the Amazonian adventuress from the planet Krypton, is able to leap tall leading men in a single bound.
Supergirl does in fact flip over Hart Bochner, a good-hearted gardener who later falls under the evil spell of the heroine's adversary, Selena, played by fiendish Faye Dunaway. "Hey, weren't you over there?" asks our love interest as the caped crusadette goes over his head in a gravity-defying scene at the seashore.
While Slater pumped iron to build up her biceps for the part, Dunaway merely pumped up her shoulder pads for another role in the "Mommy, Dearest" mode. Not since the Wicked Queen started talking to her mirror has such an outrageous villainess stalked so pure a young thing.
Selena, her sister Bianca (Brenda Vaccaro) and her mentor Nigel (Peter Cook) are "considering nothing less than world domination." Luckily for camp followers, someone with a few kinks is always feeling totalitarian.
David Odell bases his zany script on the comic book escapades of Supergirl, Superman's cousin from another dimension. She and other refugees from the pulverized planet Krypton have created the artificial haven, Argo City -- architecturally it has the look of a meltdown at a Cheese Doodle factory.
Peter O'Toole, as the madly organic city planner Zaltar, is redecorating a bit when Mia Farrow (in a cameo as Supermom) critiques his latest modification: "Zaltar, if you want my opinion, you're starting to repeat yourself here with all airy glittering stuff."
It is a wonderfully wacko work, sparked with Cook's oomph, Dunaway's cackle and the superstar power of the sensational Slater. What a face! As long as people prevail over effects, "Supergirl" glitters, she glows. Alas here, as in the last two super adventures, the effects -- not so special, not so new -- tend to slow the show some. Producers Alexander and Ilya Salkind insist on lots of flight time, but it doesn't matter much, balanced out as it is with socko action comedy.
Only one real bit of criticism, for Supergirl's ears only. Is it really advisable to wear a skirt when you're doing all that flying?
SUPERGIRL -- At area theaters.