Bare Witness (2001) from Tuna, Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski) and C2000
Tuna's comments in white:
Bare Witness (2001 video) is a direct to vid grade B erotic thriller with Angie Everhart in the lead role. This seems to be one of a rash of such films with Everhart as sort of a redheaded honkie poor man's Pam Grier. The plot is weak enough to be a soft-core, but the sex and exposure in more on the tamer erotic thriller level.
|In this one, Catalina Larranaga is Angie's roommate, and works for the same creep that Angie tends bar for. Her job is turning tricks and making pornos. She tapes herself with her customers, planning to make a documentary some day. She inadvertently films a John making arrangements to commit a political assassination. The person who did the hiring kills her, the assassin, and the sleazy bar owner trying to get rid of witnesses, and is after Angie to get the tape. His girlfriend (Lauren Reina) adds additional exposure. The political plot is rather twisted, but is the only surprise in this film, so I will leave it to you to discover.||
Scoopy's comments in yellow:
Tuna is 100% correct. It isn't
interesting enough to be a real movie, and it isn't sexy enough to be
a soft-core. It isn't thrilling or erotic enough to be an erotic
thriller. The sex scenes are unimaginative and poorly lit.
Ok, lady, I'm going to assume that you want to be the next Shannon Tweed, and I'm not going to take any issue with that. If you really want that, here's what you should do.
1. Form your own production company and make these things yourself. They people you are working with now are hacks. Control the details.
2. Find a good director, a guy who is technically sound. There are plenty of guys doing television that would like to do movies. You don't need any artistic genius. You don't have to be Baz Luhrmann to make these things. The director has to be good at two things: (1) he has to light the sex scenes well, and use the right music underneath them (2) he has to assemble the film in such as way as to keep the narrative crisp and clear.
3. Hire a hungry young writer. You can keep the costs down by hiring a complete newcomer, because here is what you are going to tell him: go find the great noir films of the 1930's and 1940's, films like Double Indemnity and the Maltese Falcon, and re-write them. Update the story and dialogue to the present day. Change the characters' names. Change the tiny details so that it isn't a complete rip-off. It can't be a Maltese Falcon, for example. Make it a Corsican Bust of Beethoven. Let the writer have fun with the details. He will love this assignment, and will have a complete script in about two weeks. And it will be a great script in a lot of ways. The great thing is that the scriptwriting bar is lower on erotic thrillers. A pretty good script with great sex scenes is a great erotic thriller.
4. In all the scenes where the sex or nudity was implied in the old 1940's script, show the sex in the new version.
5. Show the sex and other nudity in really good light. Don't go for that Red Shoe Diary quick cut crap. Do it like Body Heat, except show more. Don't make the sex scenes too long, because that slows the movie. Just show the good stuff in good light, and move on.
6. Hire aspiring young actors or stage actors who would like to do films, or soap opera actors who want to move on. Forget all the usual suspects who do these movies. You don't need to act with Richard Grieco or Daniel Baldwin. Grieco looks like what Bela Lugosi must have looked like before he combed his hair in the morning. Baldwin looks like the Stay-Puft marshmallow man would look if he got the lead in a remake of Lost Weekend. Hire one of those unrealistically handsome soap opera actors to be your leading man. He will be thrilled to work with you. There are two reasons why you need to dump the current guys: (1) you don't really want to look at Daniel Baldwin naked (2) more important, I don't really want to look at Daniel Baldwin naked. My guess is that Daniel doesn't even want to see himself naked. I'd be kinda surprised if he owns a full-length mirror.
7. Cut the bullshit. If you want to do sex movies, deliver on the promise. No crotch patches. Stand up there and look beautiful in good light. You don't have to show it all in the sex scenes. if that makles you uncomfortable, show it all in shower scenes, or some other context. If your butt is flabby, work out and stay in shape. Shannon Tweed was able to do it until she was well into in her 40's, but you have to work at it.
Angie, girl, Bare Witness is a rip off. You've been on a period of
grace, but the honeymoon is over. You won't get away with another
rip-off. But if you can make pretty good movies cheaply, with plenty
of good sex and nudity, you will get very rich.
|Comments from C2000:
In making this movie the Director strictly adhered to the basic rules in "The Definitive Guide to Making Straight to Video Crime Thrillers":
Rule 1 - A troubled detective will be handed a seemingly routine case that will turn out to involve corruption, political intrigue and murder.
The local mayoral candidate has narrowly avoided an assassination attempt and the local police force is devoting it's resources to tracking the killer when a prostitute is found dead. This seems an ideal case for Detective Killian (Daniel Baldwin) who is suspended from active duty for assaulting the incumbent mayor. The case turns out to be anything but routine when it emerges Julie, the dead prostitute, videotaped her sessions with clients and the final missing tape implicates a powerful local businessman in the assassination attempt.
Rule 2 - The detective will wrongly suspect an attractive female but soon he will be forced to protect her.
Killian starts his investigation suspecting Julie's flatmate Carli (Angie Everhart), another wannabe actress. Before long Carli's flat is turned over by goons after the tape and Killian realizes his error.
Rule 3 - The original suspect will have sex with the detective.
Angie shatters her promise to gran yet again as she continues the pursuit of Shannon Tweed. Not to the standard of Sexual Predator but some nice nudity as she humps a whale.
Rule 4 - The original suspect will become an accomplice in helping the detective solve the case.
Killian and Carli realize the missing tape is the key to finding Julie's murderer and there is a shock in store when she unwittingly finds it.
Rule 5 - The suspect/lover will do something stupid that puts her life at risk and force the detective into a tricky position.
The film does rather well here without resorting to silly plots twists. While the actual facts are clear, the motivations and loyalties of the characters are developed in an interesting manner. The box promised a "sexy thriller" and it delivers on the nudity and remains interesting to the end if not thrilling.
Return to the Movie House home page