28 August 2018 | lor_
Sci-fi misfire that's worth re-examining
An ambitious project by Adult Cinema standards, Kim Nielsen's "Saving Humanity" represents extreme over-reach: a pornographer operating successful niche fetish websites aiming to create a serious movie with erotic content. Thoroughly out of step with contemporary preferences, it is nonetheless of interest.
That's because so few pornographers these days have the budget or the will to mount "real movies" in the XXX arena. Kim's miscalculation is that fans will want to sit through over two and a half hours of movie in order to see some occasional old-style 4-minute sex scenes, when in fact virtually all porn is now designed for stand-alone streaming in 20 to 40 minute vignettes. Even the frequent cross-cutting between scenes and sex scenes in "Saving Humanity" is archaic.
I was taken by a number of peculiar elements, as well as the satisfying casting. Lead role goes to a favorite (and icon in both fetish and lesbian genres) Sinn Sage, as a scientist circa 2054 working with fellow icon Celeste Star on time travel technology. James Deen is the unlikely president, his character sort of presaging the current "Salvation" TV series lead Darius Tanz, an industrialist who's become America's dictator.
The script by Kim and his previous director (of projects like "Revenge of the Petites") Harry Sparks ambitiously bounces back and forth among four time frames, with an explicit homage to Kubrick/Clarke's "2001". Cave people in the equivalent of 14,367 B.C., teens in 1958 and a group of lesbians in 2013 are all viewed on January 31 of their respective years, when a cosmic event changes human history. This is heady sci-fi, especially for porn, the sort of material one would expect from Brad Armstrong at Wicked Pictures, or perhaps Michael Ninn back in the VHS era.
But Nielsen runs ATKingdom, a group of websites with such specialties as women flaunting thick bushes "down there". That fact is exploited in this film, as not only the cave women but some modern counterparts cater to the recent audience interest in hairy vaginas.
Best aspects of the movie are the kickboxing/martial arts fights between Sage and Celeste, choreographed by "Rico B.", and good enough to prove that both actresses are deserving of mainstream cinema roles. The SPFX are also quite acceptable, but the pretentious story is not up to snuff in design or execution. Perfunctory XXX sex scenes might as well have been jettisoned given the indigestible total package here, perhaps why the feature sat on the shelf for a couple of years before being released by a decidedly non-prestige label, the gonzo (and foot fetish oriented) Kick Ass Pictures.
Besides Sage's empathetic performance, Celeste is fun overacting as a semi-baddie, Deen is wooden as usual in a dual role (not dealing properly with time-travel paradoxes the 2013 and 2054 versions of Deen co-exist via use of the Time Chamber) and various femmes including Skin Diamond and Andy San Dimas give quality performances. Beryl Aspen as a busty young cave woman is the sexual stand-out, but her career has gone nowhere beyond this film and other fetish Kim Nielsen assignments.
Most unusual element is naming Deen's character President Weinstein, an uncanny choice in 2013 several year's before Harvey's scandalous notoriety made the headlines. Like Harv, the President is a womanizer even in a future where sex is forbidden (yeah, right!), using his technical expertise to clone his girl friend, quite beautiful Tara Lynn Foxx, in search of the perfect woman. The characters' frequent talk about "Weinstein" gives the show retroactively considerable camp value, perhaps worth resurrecting for Midnight Movie bookings.