Bil’s rating (out of 5): 0.
France/USA, 1995. Carolco Pictures, Chargeurs, United Artists, Vegas Productions. Screenplay by Joe Eszterhas. Cinematography by Jost Vacano. Produced by Charles Evans, Alan Marshall. Music by David A. Stewart. Production Design by Allan Cameron. Costume Design by Ellen Mirojnick. Film Editing by Mark Goldblatt, Mark Helfrich.
Elizabeth Berkley is absolutely hideous (and strangely hilarious) as a blonde idiot travelling through Los Angeles looking for a life. Let me save you the two hours: she never finds one. What she does find, however, is the opportunity to be a star, so after doing a stint stripping at a sleazy joint, she auditions for a grand burlesque show (the kind Gypsy Rose Lee would never step a foot near) and ends up replacing its current star (Gina Gershon) in an All About Eve manner (viewers will really enjoy how Berkley gets fuming mad and stomps off when she’s required to remove her clothing at auditions for a strip show). The film had much controversial publicity at the time of its release thanks to the filmmakers’ difficulties in getting its NC-17 rating trimmed down to an R, but even those looking for some gratuitous titillation won’t find much to scream about in the uncut version. Better to rent a real X-rated film, since at least the bad acting and idiotic writing in those films is expected and forgivable. Berkley’s performance is probably one of the worst put on screen, but Joe Eszterhas’ penny-arcade script is no help either, and thanks to it the much superior performers like Gershon, Robert Davi and Kyle MacLachlan (whose sex scene with Berkley in a pool under a neon sign is the funniest part of the movie) come off looking like painful amateurs.