17 December 2007 | lazarillo
Late 80' direct-to-video film noir
This direct-to-video effort from the late 80's/early 90's is movie kind of like "Mortal Passions", a low-budget and vaguely sexy movie that is doomed to be lost among a glut of "erotic thrillers" that flooded the low-end video market about that time. Like that movie though it is a slightly different animal, definitely low-budget but longer on plot with interests beyond the purely prurient. It could kind of be seen as a late 80's version of a film noir with a downbeat, fatalistic atmosphere, but set in La-la Land during the 80's yuppie cocaine craze.
A young man (Christopher Parker) has come to LA from the Midwest to see a friend and try to get into acting. His acting dreams, of course, don't pan out though, and he finds his friend strung-out on cocaine and in debt to an obnoxious cocaine dealer named "Bruce". He briefly falls in love with an equally struggling, semi-porno actress, but their relationship quickly goes south because, among other things, she has to stop during sex to take phone calls from her agent. His only real friend is a local bartender played by 70's exploitation tough guy, William Smith. Eventually tragedy occurs and he turns into a "Taxi Driver" vigilante type.
Christopher Parker won't remind anybody of Robert DeNiro, nor will the rest of the cast. Smith is good, but he has a pretty small role. The girlfriend "Betty" has a nice body, but it's pretty unclear whether the character herself is a bad actress or the actress playing her is. The sleazy coke dealer is pretty realistic and convincing though. Like most "erotic thrillers" this has plenty of nudity in it, including a gratuitous strip-club scene, but it's real raison d'etre seems to be as a scathing criticism of cold and heartless Hollywood and all the innocent dreams that get broken there. It is fairly realistic I guess (except I seriously doubt someone would accidentally walk into an audition for MALE porno actors, like the protagonist does here). Good luck finding this, but see if you get a chance.