15 December 1999 | monsters from the id
It Ain't Bird-Watching
In a moody and noir-like story of love and murder, we follow the sexual education of a young innocent plunged into the Bohemian world of artists' lofts. Sounds like the company line, eh? Actually what we have in "I'm Watching You" is a well-paced "erotic thriller" with a fine balance of nudity and plot, an attractive cast, and an evocative sound-track
The lively and uninhibited Jacqueline Lovell plays the painter's model, Alisha, who never misses an opportunity to shimmy out of her dress or join in an energetic romp with the handsome young artist. With Alisha as her role model and guide, and through the urging of a stranger on the phone, Laura evolves from innocent girl to wanton woman (even if she has to struggle with lines like "I guess it was the way I was raised. Pleasure is evil.it's a sin.." to emphasize her innocence) And we become watchers too, watching Laura as she indulges in a bit of exhibitionism at the window of her loft and finally progresses to masturbating while the mysterious stranger listens on the phone.
And fortunately, because this movie follows the unwritten rules of "erotic thrillers", the next stage of Laura's sexual education is a girls' night out, complete with lingerie modeling, dancing, and finally the seduction of Laura by Alisha
We also have two very torrid scenes with the manipulative wife of the artist (played by Vanessa Blair) and her infidelity with the artist's agent, with some mild S & M moments making the mercury rise in Laura's thermometer as she watches from her window.
All of which leads me to the innocent heroine, played by Lori Dawn. The IMDB lists only one other film, also made in 1997, with her in the cast. It's a Kira Reed vehicle called "Madame Savant", which unfortunately hasn't entered my late-night cable circuit. Perhaps it's a personal preference for pretty redheads, but I couldn't take my eyes off Lori throughout this movie. And of course my natural reaction is to want to see more; why else do we assemble around the flickering altar late at night? I know the adult movie business is unstable, actresses come and go (literally), appear under new names, get out of the business and marry wealthy producers, get out of the business and marry broke saxophone players, and so on. But it's a real disappointment when a face and form of such promise simply vanishes. Any recent sightings from you watchers out there?