16 January 2015 | lor_
Excellent cast in drama mixing gambling & sex
Coming from Roberta Findlay's production company (though she's not involved in its filming), CLIMAX! mines the popular material of sex & gambling for its porn premise. It's a mildly diverting exercise with top East Coast talent of its era on view.
I recently saw a similarly themed but far better movie on the subject, the obscure JACKPOT derived from a lost classic THE VENUS TRAP starring Sharon Thorpe. This Henri Pachard 35mm film stars the underrated Cody Nicole as a hapless woman married to Eric Edwards. He's gambling in Atlantic City and inexplicably bets Cody's favors in a poker hand, won by slimy Joey Silvera. The bet was only for $500 -not credible (in JACKPOT dating 10 years earlier the similar bet for sex with a wife was priced at $500,000).
At any rate, Cody is used to living dangerously but hardly prepared for this callous action on the part of her hubby. Before the bet can be paid off the script (oddly uncredited) sets up many twists and turns that are fairly interesting, including a subplot involving top-billed Kelly Nichols as a decidedly warped wife of psychotherapist George Payne. Tish Ambrose also has a stand-out turn as one of his patients. Director Pachard appears in one of his familiar cameo roles playing pinball in the background of a well-staged 3-some featuring Silvera, a man you love to hate..