A series of reviews and random bits of pop culture ephemera that I'm watching, reading, listening to or whatever.
Wednesday, March 10, 2021
LADY STREET FIGHTER
Directed by James Bryan
Unicorn Video, Inc. VHS
Renee Harmon’s character’s sister has been killed. It has something to do with a “master tape” that the FBI and Assassins Inc. are after. Renee shows up in Los Angeles to find out what happened. She becomes involved in a web of kung-fu fighting/car chasing intrigue that leads her right to the top. I think. A man named Rick Pollard romances her but is he working for the FBI or the assassins or both? And, who is Mr. Diamond, the wealthy man who throws strange sex parties in his opulent mansion? And, who is that man who looks exactly like Dick from Don’t Go In The Woods, constantly lurking around in the background? And, why do I keep hearing the stock music from Invasion From Inner Earth?
James Bryan and Renee Harmon team up for the first of three movies. This one is the best. Mr. Bryan’s wonderful way of relating information is running on high. Renee looks good and kicks a considerable amount of ass. I think Don’t Go In The Woods and Frozen Scream are higher accomplishments for them separately. Together, however, this is their Duck Soup.
We start off with a rather disturbing torture scene made even odder by the strange-strange off key pop tune that plays near the end. Then, Renee shows up in a series of great outfits. She has a pretty cool stunt in a parking garage. She performs acts of kung-fu on assorted gentlemen. She takes a shower. (I’m not sure how I feel about seeing Renee nude.) She fellates a stalk of celery for what feels like hours on end. She falls in love with Mr. Pollard (and he with her). If you’re wondering why Ms. Harmon is cool, this is the movie to watch.
Mr. Bryan kept me on my toes throughout. Locations change. People appear and then vanish for long stretches only to reappear leaving my mind thinking “Who is that?” During the sex party, we keep cutting to a group of guys in bed sheets with drinks yelling “Toga! Toga!” The sound and the pictures don’t always match up right, which makes for gloriously disorientating viewing. (It’s the strangest during long scenes when Renee is kicking ass or lounging around and not speaking. When she suddenly does speak, her voice is always really loud and her accent more pronounced then ever. I fell off my love seat on more than one occasion.) Mr. B handles the action scenes with gusto. They are the most straightforwardly entertaining scenes here. It’s only in the plot where things go a little wonky because, although it is pretty simple, it gets doled out in strange portions. Well, it certainly kept me guessing, took me two viewings to piece it all together.
The film bobs and weaves and leaps around and punches you and shrieks at you and buzzes in your head and takes its top off and then, with a magic trick and the promise of a sequel, it’s gone. 72 minutes is the perfect length.
AUDIO AND VIDEO
Old, old tape. The whole movie had a yellow tinge to it but I think that was the print. The audio leaps all over the place. You know, Don’t Go In The Woods wasn’t compromised in its Special Edition. I’d like to see a spiffed-up version of this (and Executioner Part 2) on DVD. It’s too bad Renee won’t be able to join us for the special features.
Only in dreams, my sweet friend.
The film is like a woman screaming in your ear while she feeds you chocolate covered strawberries and, occasionally, kicks you in the balls. It’s that good!
The one film I kept thinking of when I was watching this was Double Agent 73. Yes, there are no Chesty-sized boobs with cameras in them. But, they’re both about women kicking ass and falling for double agents and stripping out of awesome outfits during their spare moments. Try a double feature. I will this weekend. I think it’ll be great.