Well… it’s finally out! “Bitch Slap” is here at last…. Your Favorite Catgirl Princess has been awaiting this one for such a looonnng time I had begun to think it would never reach DVD. Sometimes that’s a bad thing…. usually telling one that a film was just sooooo darn bad it would never have made back it’s money in a Theatrical release. Then there a few of those fun lil’ gems that have such a niche audience that Direct-to-DVD is just the way to go. Hopefully this is such a film….
Synopsis? Do we really need one? No, not really, but here it goes… “Three sexy “Bad Girls” travel to a remote desert hideaway to steal $200 million in diamonds from a ruthless underworld kingpin and things quickly spiral out of their control. Allegiances get switched, truths get revealed, criminals are unmasked and nothing (or nobody) is quite what it seems as the fate of the world is precariously balanced upon the fates of this trio of sexy femme fatales.”
Made by two of the people involved with the wacky and super silly “Hercules” and “Xena, Warrior Princess” TV shows (as well as many of the same cast and crew), this one looked to be a fun little slice of naughty fun just the way Neko likes them. Not only that…. but it let me tell my sweet Carolyn that I finally had an honest to goodness English dialog movie for us to watch together…. (However, I might just have neglected to tell her the title….. Thank goodness she loves me… Hehehehe!!)
I’m expecting some gratuitous violence… some over-the-top bad girl combat… crazy villains that seriously need to be slapped, and all the exploitation goodies that can be crammed into a single movie. Will I get my wish?
Guess we’ll all have to “Read On” to find out…..
This one starts out with a nifty scene of complete devastation…. fire, wreckage strewn haphazardly in all directions… and the bloody, yet ever so sexy Trixie (played by Julia Voth) asking just how such a scene could have ever have come to pass. But before we learn that, it’s into a psychedelic opening credit sequence featuring nifty clips from just about every “bad girl exploitation” film you can think of with a rocking theme to get your motor running. This alone tells you that the team of Eric Gruendemann and Rick Jacobson, the writer/directors of “Bitch Slap” know exactly what the audience for this sort of film is looking for. They waste no time letting us know we’re going to take one hell of a ride to exploitation heaven….. embracing almost every theme the genre knows.
First… we get a sweet black 63′ Thunderbird roaring down a desert road to a desolate rundown Trailer in the middle of nowhere…. In a cloud of dust, our three anti-heroines disembark in slow motion, all the better to strut their stuff, before opening the trunk to reveal the beaten and disheveled crime boss, Gage. No time for pleasantries… it’s time to beat some info outta him about the location of a hidden treasure… 200 million in diamonds to be exact. (And you know just how we girls like diamonds…) This is the centerpiece to the whole film… those diamonds… and a few other things.
You see the film has one neat little trick…. It’s actually two stories in one… The first moves forward telling all about the girls, the Trailer, and the diamonds. The second is shown throughout as a series of flashbacks… each looking further and further into the past behind this caper and each revealing more and more of the truth behind what’s really going on. It’s a clever little device that gives nice payoff for paying attention to the story as it unwinds. Even better.. each flashback was filmed with limited sets augmented by quite a bit of green screen backdrops added in. Overall, it gives these flashbacks a slightly “cartoonish” style all their own, very reminiscent of the look of “Sin City” but in gorgeous technicolor, and helps to separate the two parallel stories nicely. Also… from the standpoint of keeping one’s budget down, it means that “Bitch Slap” really only has one live location to worry about…. our crappy little Trailer in the desert. Sheer genius!
Gage, the guy in the trunk, (played with amazing chauvinist gusto by “Hercules” alumni Michael Hurst) is no match for our determined young women. After a particularly brutal interrogation, he eventually spills the beans (and quite a bit of blood) about the diamonds and where he buried them before shooting off his mouth one time too many to suit resident bad-ass ex con, Camero (played by America Olivo). It’s a big mistake…. and one he most definitely doesn’t live to regret. One bullet to the noggin’ later and, like all good crime caper movies… it’s just the beginning of this rather shaky alliance’s unraveling.
Hel (played by Erin Cummings of “Spartacus: Blood & Sand” fame)…. the group’s unofficial leader… has her job cut out for her. She’s got to keep mad dog Camero in line while protecting naive stripper Trixe from the ugly side of what is turning out to be a rather bloody affair completely unlike the orderly caper she had planned. What would be the only thing to make the situation more complicated? Well how about if Hel was in a sweet, romantic, and very sexy lesbian relationship with Trixe while also having been intimately involved with Camero while they were together in “the joint… the slammer.. the big house”? Oh, my goodness, yes…. We can’t very well have an exploitation film without a wee bit of spicy lesbian action to livin’ things up. (About this time, Carolyn stopped giving me “The Look” for having tricked her into watching this one and kinda got interested in the story…. Naughty, naughty girl!!)
Naturally this leads to all sorts of jealousy and drives a further wedge between our characters. Before crazy Camero can do much though, yet another problem rears its ugly head. Out of nowhere… local Deputy Sheriff Roy Fuches (played by Ron Melendez) comes along looking to render aid and assistance our “damsels in distress”. One bullshit story later and he leaves, never realizing how close he came to ending up like crime boss Gage. Good thing he was mostly thinking with the lil’ head and not the big one……
Yep…. Hel is one smart lady, and not exactly the person she’s represented herself as to either of her lovers and partners in crime. Neko can’t tell you who she really is without spoiling things, but trust me…. she not the only one with secrets. However…. those secrets have to wait. More uninvited guests arrive to crash the party…. this time old “friends” of Camero’s. These two, Hot wire and his lil’ Japanese psycho girlfriend Kinky (played by William Gregory Lee and Minae Noji) want in on the fun too…. as well as a shot at grabbing the treasure for themselves. These two are a hoot!! Hotwire with his “Tourette’s Syndrome” fits is somehow actually twitchier than Camero, while Kinky and her razor bladed yo-yo gives us a perfect Psychotic Asian schoolgirl gone totally homicidal. Politically correct? Who are we kidding…. Not in this movie!!
All this leads to the eventual recovery of the treasure… as well as what Hel is actually after…. (but Neko’s not gonna tell ya what that is… So there!!) We get more fights… lots of swearing to put sailors to shame, some neat cameos from other “Hercules” and “Xena” alumni, and probably the single best knock down, ass kicking, non-martial art, no holds barred cat-fight I’ve ever seen between two women in any film… ever. Zoe Bell, the fight choreographer and stunt co-coordinator for this one has done a great job of making it all look both gritty and real, while keeping it fun and over-the-top. She get’s Neko’s top praise for her work here…. and it’s one of the reasons I ended up liking this one so much.
And like it I did. This one is low budget direct to video filmaking at it’s absolute best. The people involved went at this one with all guns blazing and an obvious love of the B movie “Bad Girls Gone Wild” genre that shows. I can believe that every penny spent on this production ends up right on screen where it belongs, and all involved gave it their all, beginning to end. The girls are sexy and strong and even as “bad” as they are, you still wanna root for them to win….. By the end of this one, even finicky Carolyn was enjoying herself, and that says a lot.
I give “Bitch Slap” an enthusiastic 4 “Meows” out of 5 for being a fun filled parody of 70’s B movies, with a great humor and gusto for the silliness of it all, and deserves a place with other cult favs in anyone’s DVD collection. Remember though, you have to like these sorts of crazy films… and luckily I do… otherwise it’s definitely not going to be your cup of tea. The DVD itself is also well done, with a marvelous 3 part “Making Of” featurette that must be watched as well as it gives you a perfect look at how such a movie could still be made even today.
So? Want a look at this one yourself? Here you go! Hurry up and get slapped silly!