(out of 5)
Weak, unsatisfying adaptation of Peter O’Donnell’s spy novels that serves more as a prologue for future films than anything else. Alexandra Staden does her best with a monochromatic character, a casino roulette hostess who is taken hostage, along with her fellow employees, when a thief (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) breaks in with his crew and demands to know the combination to the casino’s safe. She secretly notifies an outside colleague of her situation and then buys time while waiting for help to arrive by telling the criminal her life story, about how she was once a wild child who was taken in by a kindly wanderer. Her mentor taught our heroine various languages as well as kickass self-defense techniques that she barely gets to use in the film’s conclusion before its short running time expires. The film was reportedly rushed into production when the studio’s options on the character rights were about to expire (after years of production delays), and it shows. Joseph Losey’s 1966 version with Monica Vitti may be kitsch central, but it’s at least shitloads of fun.
Directed by Scott Spiegel
Cinematography by Vivi Dragan Vasile
Music by Deborah Lurie
Production Design by Christian Niculescu
Costume Design by Oana Paunescu
Film Editing by Michelle Harrison