18 May 2010 | lor_
Hardcore salute to softcore almost works
Explicitly styled as a tribute to "the late great Russ Meyer", this Faster Pussycat homage emerges as an unusually knowing tribute by hardcore video makers to the tradition of softcore porn. While the first half is entertaining, it falls apart due to the exigencies of delivering endless sex footage, and would have seemed interminable if projected back in the theatrical porn era.
At least Elizabeth Starr's effort is fun and delivers the goods, unlike the recent slumming expeditions by Tarantino and the disappointing Bitch Slap by Rick Jacobson. Those were self-aggrandizing exercises that didn't care a hoot about the fans.
Starr is also self-indulgent, casting herself in a co-starring role but acting poorly (while she adequately directs the other players). She is a porn star of gargantuan proportions - photos of her in earlier incarnations reveal an attractive woman with a normal figure, but a la Heidi Montag she got carried away with cosmetic surgery. She specializes in distributing fetish videos (of many types), and this feature absorbs Meyer's big bust fetish.
Opening scene is fun, as Pussy LaMoore (Summer Cummings) and Ruby Rockets (Starr) get into a cat fight out in the desert, each trying to smother the other with her humongous boobs. It's almost as if soft porn doyenne Doris Wishman actually WAS her protégée Chesty Morgan, rather than merely foisting the top-heavy '70s starlet on the world.
With the assistance of the Devils Car Club (of Venice, California), Starr unveils 4 terrific vintage autos including 2 T-birds, and the action scenes (even including crane shots!) of cars chasing around the desert are very well done, far more interesting than in Bitch Slap (whose setting and many scenes unwittingly mirror this earlier video). Using a 3-camera shooting style (reminiscent of the indie features directed by Fred Williamson), Starr creates an impressive video look, UNTIL the show falls apart in the second half.
Nominal story of 3 babes in fast cars terrorizing a couple played by lovely porn star Daphne Rosen (a fave of mine, appearing here with normal figure, before she too succumbed to one nip/tuck too many) and Rod Long (a tall porn thesp who I'd previously seen opposite Starr in the big bust classic Boobcage 3) is solid viewing as long as the action (including sex scenes) remains on location in Mojave. But when Starr goes indoors for an endless lesbian scene (it seemed to last for over an hour!) involving Kandi Cox and Tiffany Towers the video self-destructs. This exercise in cunnilingus keeps cutting back and forth between two camera angles, but there is no color grading, and the screen goes from pinkish to orangeish over & over in sub-amateur fashion. I don't think Jacques Rivette (who used the same technique cutting endlessly from 16mm to 35mm footage -but in black & white- in his classic L'Amour Fou) would approve.
On the way our top-heavy auteur also salutes porn maverick Nick Millard, with the heroines dressed in colorful (red, white or black) knee-high patent leather boots, a staple of Nick's feature films. Instead of casting Nick's superstar Uschi Digard, whose career was also closely identified with Russ Meyer, Starr brings back Kitten Natividad in a non-sex cameo, that is not flattering at all to fans' memories of her in her prime.
Best performance is by spunky Summer Cummings, who oddly looks like Uma Thurman (circa Pulp Fiction) with two volleyballs taped to her chest. She treats this nonsense as if auditioning for Kenneth Branagh, and I pitied her having to give a b.j. to a horrible specimen Dik Silver, whose particular ring-piercing will cause most mainstream porn fans to cringe. But this is fetish time, not straight-ahead porn.
Ron Jeremy appears as Silver's daddy (and Cox is his unlikely daughter, also pierced) in a half-hearted salute to hillbilly porn, replete with the hints of incest (see: Sex Family Robinson), in a probably unintended tribute to the early '70s folksy softcore films of Bethel Buckalew. The inevitable "Special Features" segment of the DVD inflicts a 17-minute deleted sex scene of Rosen and Jeremy that is pure torture to watch. It is so bad, and Jeremy so over-the-hill and ugly that I would recommend it for showing to young women as part of an aversion therapy program to cure them of any heterosexual tendencies (a la the old therapy applied in unenlightened times to homosexual men), and convince them to pursue the lesbian life style. I'm sure Starr would gladly donate the footage.