Play Nice (1992) from Tuna

Play Nice (1992) - As you know, I watch a lot of obscure, grade B, and budget films. Usually, they are something of a chore to watch, but occasionally one surprises me. This is one of them. Billed as an erotic thriller, there was nothing erotic in the first half of the film, but I was hooked on the characters and plot completely by then. A cop is investigating a serial killer. He is called "Mouth," and is an outcast in his own department due to the fact that he says and does the outlandish, and seems insensitive. As the film progresses, we learn that he has a serious side, is sensitive, and a damned good detective. Other characters are developed with as much care, and as much humor. About mid way, the film turns more serious. Mouth (Ed O'Ross) meets a county records clerk, Louise Robey, and the two of them end up naked, in bed, and often. By then, we know that the serial killer is a woman, and seems to go after divorced men who have molested their young daughters and escaped prosecution. Robey shows breasts and buns in scene after scene, but some of the humor remains, and the thriller aspect is very much in evidence.
Robey is best known for her role in Friday the 13th, the Series. I was not familiar with her, but found her IMDB biography fascinating:


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"Louise Ann Robey was born in Montreal, Canada, in 1960, the daughter of an Air Force Major and a London stage actress. Robey was educated in schools throughout Europe, and learned a number of languages while also developing her talents in dance, music and painting. At age 15, she studied dance at the London Royal Academy of Ballet, then returned to Canada hoping to pursue a career in music and dance. In 1979, while sunbathing on the French Riviera, Robey was spotted by the famed photographer Jacques Henri Lartigue, who photographed her and got her a 12-page spread in "Vogue Paris" that same year. Those pictures launched Robey on a successful modeling career. Robey moved to America during the early 1980s and formed a band in New York under the name "Louise and the Creeps." They broke up before they recorded anything, but Robey persevered. In 1984, Robey landed a recording contract on the Silver Blue Label. Her debut album, "Robey" was released; it contained 8 tracks, including one which became the album's first single, the wildly popular hit "One Night In Bangkok." This song reached #5 on the Billboard Dance Chart in late 1984, but from the way it was played on radio stations all over America, it seemed more popular than that, with its great beat, and lyrics of a far-off land, and risqué nights. Other singles followed. Beautiful Robey was a natural for TV, and in 1987 she landed her signature role of Micki Foster in "Friday the 13th: The Series" which ran for 3 seasons and 72 episodes. Robey was out of the spotlight for 1991 but returned in 1992 with the erotic thriller Play Nice . In 1994, Robey married Charles Francis Topham de Vere Beauclerk, Lord of Burford (Burford is a small town near Oxford in the United Kingdom). Robey's marriage to the Earl has made her Countess of Burford. They have one son, James. Their marriage ended in early 2001, and the two share custody of their son. Robey toured the UK briefly in the summer of 2000 with I.E. Soul. In January 2001, Robey began recording with producer Mark Harwood, band Fourman Fubar, and is involved in a dance music project titled "A Guy Called Dready." Robey is still fondly remembered for "Friday the 13th: The Series," which is being rerun in syndication. Robey got where she is today by hard work, though her fans might say the results are nothing short of magical."

This is a life that deserves a biopic already, and she is nowhere near through with it. One has to wonder why a classically trained dancer and painter, and star of a long running TV series took a role in a soft core. This, as near as I can tell, is her only exposure.
no DVD info available
This film only scores 5.3 of 10 at IMDB, with only 28 votes. This is too low in my opinion, but the structure of the film might go a ways towards explaining it. For those looking for the skin, they have probably turned off the film by the time it starts, and thriller lovers might be put off by all of the nudity and sex. I personally would have preferred a little less sex and more story in the second half, but the film would have kept me watching to the end even with no nudity at all. It is definitely a soft core in the second half, but the sex scenes are very hot, and not gratuitous. They handle red herrings and plot twists in a very interesting way. Our POV is the same as Mouth, and we suspect the right person along with him, and fall for the same trick as he does.

The Critics Vote

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The People Vote ...

IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C+, and a high recommendation for anyone who won't be offended by the nudity and sex. Best of all, you will find it in the $6.95 discount section of your local store.

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