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Released: Jul 01st, 2002
Running Time: 112
Director: Jonathan Morgan
Company: Wicked Pictures
Cast: Joel Lawrence, Randy Spears, Sydnee Steele, Brad Armstrong, Julia Ann, Devinn Lane, Nikita Denise, Kylie Ireland, Kristal Summers
Critical Rating: AAAAA
Couples, fans of the participants. Anybody who wants a plot, this'll keep 'em busy for hours.
After a barn-burner of a sex scene with Randy Spears and Sydnee Steele - one of those intense go-rounds where they trade off passion and control - she lights up a post-fuck cigarette and gets him to take her to the nearby diner, with the portentous line, "We need to talk."
The diner is one of those brightly-lit, smoky, B-picture all-night dives and they walk by Joel Lawrence, sitting at the counter, but the camera stays on Lawrence as he grouses to partially-sympathetic Kylie Ireland about how he can't get a break as a screenwriter. We see him over Steele's shoulder as Steele overhears him and Steele says, "Another struggling screenwriter. Do they bus them in, or do they manufacture them somewhere?"
Turns out Lawrence had a pitch go well earlier this afternoon and the great big producer wants a treatment tomorrow. (Steele: "Shoot me now.") His idea, Lawrence tells Ireland, is a dark comedy involving a hitman with a mid-life crisis. Camera fast-trucks left with an audible whoosh to Mike Horner, anguished, who says to Brad Armstrong, "So why won't you do it?"
Armstrong, bemused, says "Morals, ethics, whatever ye want."
Horner, surprised, replies, "Morals and ethics? You're a goddamn hired killer."
Armstrong turns to Horner and says, in a measured, matter-of-fact tone as deadly as a Molotov cocktail thrown in a Belfast riot, "Mr. Miller. Keep yer voice down."
Horner is a blocked writer who wants to have his wife killed by hitman Armstrong so he can write about his anguish. This is explained in the next scene, a flashback with Armstrong and his tootsie Julia Ann.
Jump-cut back to reality, to the diner, to Spears talking with Steele. (Time is flexible around here.) Steele says her husband suspects something's going on between them. "We should be scared shitless," she tells him. "Do you know what he would do if he found out about us?"
"I've been his partner a long time, I know what he's capable of," Spears says. Cautious, not scared. Aware.
Okay, so we've got two stories, in tandem, Lawrence's fictional screenplay about the writer and the hitman, and this real-life cheating-spouse scenario with Steele and Spears.
"Y'see those two people?" Armstrong says to Horner, gesturing over his shoulder at Steele and Spears. "She's cheating on her husband. That's her lover. I've been following her for a week."
Whoa! The fictional hitman is shadowing the real lovers? Maybe it isn't just time that's flexible around here.
And a moment later a remark by Horner gets overheard by Lawrence, who points out that that was what he was just thinking of.
We're just getting started. Enter Nikita Denise and Devinn Lane, with Lane facing a crisis in their relationship: Lane's not sure that she's a lesbian (although there is no question in Denise's mind) and we ping-pong over to watch them talking in their booth when Lane says that she has to trade places with Denise now because that guy over there (Lawrence) is a jerk who just pitched her asshole boss, a great big producer, another bad movie idea and he pretended to like it and told Lawrence to bring it back tomorrow but he isn't going to buy it, just to teach Lawrence a lesson. And that's not all.
Chinese box? This vid is a Rubik's cube. You get one side straightened out and two others get screwed up. It's tied together with visual cues, with words said in one context smash-cut into another, with pans and fades and over-the-shoulder shots transitioning between separate/distinct/unified realities. Interspersed are six sex scenes, including a delectable g/g with Lane in her schoolmarm glasses busying herself sucking a dildo while Denise tongues her clit - before they go to the diner. And Ireland and Lawrence flashing back from the diner to their good old days before they separated.
The pieces get tied together, in different ways, leading to three climaxes, any one of which would have gotten the job done. But the excesses work.
Pre-noms: Screenplay Jonathan Morgan for directing, editing. Rod Hopkins for art direction. Whoever did the moody piano music deserves a credit, and certainly a pre-nom. Jake Jacobs for videography. Mike Horner for non-sex performance. And acting kudos and a pre-nom to Brad Armstrong for a letter-perfect Irish hitman with a heart o' gold to go with the bullets o' lead he's no doubt toting.