Gia: Portrait of a Porn Star
- 3h 6m
Gia was the most beautiful and sought after star in adult films. The world truly was at her feet, nothing was beyond her grasp. Her meteoric rise was matched only by her catastrophic fall fr... Read allGia was the most beautiful and sought after star in adult films. The world truly was at her feet, nothing was beyond her grasp. Her meteoric rise was matched only by her catastrophic fall from grace Sex, Drugs and Fame can only get you so far.Gia was the most beautiful and sought after star in adult films. The world truly was at her feet, nothing was beyond her grasp. Her meteoric rise was matched only by her catastrophic fall from grace Sex, Drugs and Fame can only get you so far.
She and co-conspirator Spencer Benedict (the writer-director) worked together on a trifle "Sunny's Slumber Party" featuring an all-star cast, and both decided to try their hands at a non-gonzo show for a change as their followup. Benedict cops to having watched Angelina Jolie's TV movie about a famous model, and he and Sunny elected to do their own version here, not about the mainstream modeling industry but rather about porn modeling/stardom.
Many clichés are trotted out in Benedict's crummy script underlining the conventional talking points about what Adult Entertainment is all about behind the scenes, none of it ringing true or even sincere. Making matters worse, numerous pointless and ill-executed interviews with famous and flunky industry types are inserted randomly to give fake testimonials about the fictional, ill-fated superstar Gia.
Leone's acting is poor throughout, an irrelevancy in her hundreds of all-sex videos but fatal in a dramatic context. As her on-again/off- again lover Tori Black gives a fine performance, but it's not enough to salvage the 3-hour-plus mess.
In brief, Gia is a girl applying for modeling work to pay her bills, taken under the wing of a venal Herschel Savage (presumably playing a Jim South type amidst the various composite "industry" characters) and quickly slips into nude modeling and then porn acting. Monica Mayhem is briefly arresting as the femme still photographer who seduces Gia and leads her astray (sort of a modernized Suze Randall or Bunny Yeager role), and I was surprised at her very close resemblance to real superstar Stormy Daniels in look and styling - had this been a Wicked Pictures project instead of made by Sunny for release in her SunLust label's Vivid distribution contract one would have cast Stormy instead.
Much of her porn career depicted, quite poorly as we never get the sense of her meteoric rise which the "witnesses" (a la Warren Beatty's interviews in his trailblazing movie "Reds") like a smug & stupid sounding Ron Jeremy describe verbally, consists of humping tattooed nonentity Ariel King. King is actually the feature's co-producer Daniel Weber, hardly ready for prime-time as a porn performer and glaringly deficient casting in a "prestige" Adult project (afforded six shooting days spread over a 6-month period). IMDb explains the anomaly: Weber married his meal-ticket Sunny Leone the year after this stinker was made -sounds like an old "Perry Mason" episode plot set-up for murder.
Even performers I greatly admire add nothing with their "interviews": for example, Dyanna Lauren seems tongue-tied trying to say anything useful about the fictional Gia. And there's oodles of unsubtle plugola as Vivid employees ranging from Shylar Cobi (his name misspelled Shyler in the credits) to Mark Kernes hold center stage. Only one who makes a convincing impact is the underrated director Jim Powers, who conjures up an elaborate back-story extemporaneously that is far more interesting than anything in Spencer's script.
After her unconvincing rise, Gia's fall is blamed on drugs, but all we see is her smoking, presumably pot. A bit of dark eyeliner to give her bags under eyes is the entire depiction of a down & out Gia, ending up in the hospital with some Ali MacGraw "Love Story" type of fatal disease. Who says Adult Cinema can't be as phony as mainstream Hollywood?
Along for the ride besides the talented Tori are Lexi Belle and Jennifer Dark to provide some XXX content variety, Dark delivering anal sex for the fans. Sentimental ending is very poorly directed, only adding to the emptiness and ephemeral nature of the entire project.
- May 22, 2017