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Released: Mar 01st, 1990
Running Time: 240 (combined)
Director: John Stagliano
Company: Evil Angel
Cast: Joey Silvera, Tianna (III), Kristana Knight, John Stagliano, Randy Spears, Brandy Alexandre, Lauren Brice, Sean Michael, Adam Carr, Nina Hartley, Kiki (VI)
Critical Rating: AAAA
John Stagliano dusts off his alter ego, Mario from a couple of earlier productions, and has Mario go on a kind of Field of Dreams excursion of the Sunset Strip.
Mario/Stagliano is like the baseball fan who wistfully remembers the glory days of Ebbets Field – of the Duke, Furillo, Hodges and Campanella. The game-winning home runs. The world championships. Only with Mario, it's strippers. Strip clubs aren't what they used to be, he rues. He points out parking lots and other banal monuments that used to be the sight of wild Saturday Nights, when a dancer would stick her bare ass in your face. And he seeks such a girl from times gone-by, named Crystal (Lauren Brice).
By chance, during one nightly amble, Mario comes upon such a club – Shadow Dancers – where the girls fulfill what other clubs leave to your imagination. But Mario finds himself immersed in a kind of cattlemen vs. sheepherders war. Pimp-with-a-limp, Randy Spears (he's great) has cops on the take, and he's trying to use them to do his dirty work by shutting down the place, so he can have the girls work for him.
Shadow Dancers 1 & 2 (you have to watch both tapes to make real sense of the story) is Stagliano's epic statement of the dance, the tease, and female body worship. Sex doesn't just roll of a bed in these two features. It's monumentally orchestrated – like Sean Michael's (a heretofore much underrated performer) Michael Jackson dance routine before he takes on four ladies – this scene alone may well go down as an adult classic. Evidence Stagliano's cumulative sex scene nominations between AVN and XRCO, and you realize the man knows how to put it before the camera. Here, he does it in ways many others still aspire.
Both features, in nice packaging, are sure to be among the huge hits of 1990. Worthwhile from every aspect.