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Sunday, 14 October 2018

Retro Review: The Players Club (1998)

The Players Club
Cast: LisaRaye, Bernie Mac, Monica Calhoun, Ice Cube, Jamie Foxx, John Amos, Michael Clarke Duncan, Terrence Howard, Charlie Murphy
Genre: Comedy Drama
Worldwide Box Office Gross: over $23 million

Plot: A mother must contend with rival strippers and her boss in an attempt to make a legitimate living

'Don't Wanna Be A Player, No More'

Watching The Players Club, it certainly reminds me of a bit of Striptease with a bit of Showgirls.

Diana is a single mother with kids to feed who has aspirations in becoming a broadcast journalist and studies at college. In order to help pay her college fees, Diana turns to stripping. She works at a club owned by Hustler Bill (Bernie Mac) and tries to keep it a secret from everyone outside the club, especially her college professor. When Diana discovers her young and easily impressionable cousin is also working at the same strip joint, a bunch of people lead her onto a life of prostitution. Diana has to overcome the hurdles of this new life, whilst trying to balance her academic studies as a student.

Minus the stripping and violent scenes, random scenes where nothing of particular interest happens, The Players Club is a huge disappointment. Director Ice Cube's take on gang mentality and culture is just not gritty at all and the way it comes across feels unrealistic and isn't hard-hitting enough. Cube also wrote, produces and acts in the film with the clunky dialogue and the story is flawed throughout, lacking in real drama and was difficult to follow at times. When it tries to tackle the other characters' subplots, most of them don't really lead to anywhere. Lisa Raye's performance is good, but her character, Diana mostly functions as a set-up to the story and so when the film tries to present her journey from A to B, it felt incomplete and not thorough enough.

The humour just didn't work and most of the moments were a dud when they ought to have been even more hard-hitting with more punch. 

Jamie Foxx tries to breathe some life into the film with his performance, but his role is not only too brief, it just wasn't as meaty and substantial as I'd liked it to have been. 

Final Verdict:

A Black version of what is essentially Paul Verhoeven's Showgirls and Striptease that came a year after, but much like with the latter, The Players Club struggles to balance the tone of comedy and drama. It's mildly interesting, but it and its story just didn't offer a whole lot more to make it fully entertaining and engaging. 

The Players Club is the Black Striptease, and just as bland and unengaging. 


Deconstructing Harry Movie Screenshots (1997) Final Part

Deconstructing Harry



Saturday, 13 October 2018

Deconstructing Harry Movie Screenshots (1997) Part 1 #Robinwilliams

Deconstructing Harry
Starring Woody Allen, Kirstie Alley, Billy Crystal, Julie Kavner, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tobey Maguire, Demi Moore, Elisabeth Shue, Stanley Tucci, Robin Williams 
Studio: Fine Line Features
'Harry Block wrote a bestseller about his best friends. Now, his best friends are about to become his worst enemies' 

My Movie Review Rating: 7.5 out of 10












Thursday, 11 October 2018

Mini Retro Review: Hidden Passion (2000) #badmovies

Hidden Passion
Erotic Thriller

Wife who is married to her mobster hubby is unsatisfied with their marriage, her ex-lover shows up and they discover the wife's husband's stolen money stashed away in a cupboard. Along the way, she sleeps with several men with one of them getting bumped off. The premise is interesting and the plot is similar to Bound, whilst the sex scenes are better here than in the vast majority of softcore erotic thrillers I've seen and the chemistry and intimacy is not overdone. Some of the acting was all right, although the Southern accent by Kim Dawson is a little amusing to hear. Surprisingly, the story held up well right towards the end and there were some little twists that kept me peeled throughout. All in all, I'd watch this again. 

Is It Worth Watching?

If you are into erotic thrillers, yes


Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Mini Retro Review: Electra (1996) #badmovies


I can't tell you how seriously messed up Electra is, in terms of its conception; besides the fact this is not the Jennifer Garner superhero film, this version tries to be a superhero flick, action flick, softcore porno, part- horror and part- fantasy all in one, and the resulting mix is so disjointed with a story that makes little to no sense, whatsoever. There is an incest subplot involving Shannon Tweed's stepmum character and her stepson, Billy and a love triangle thing going on between them and Billy's girlfriend, Marianne. Bad music that plays when Tweed takes a bath it made my ears bleed, the fight scenes are poorly conceived and edited with little in the way of decent fight choreography. Unconvincing performances, even though this is not a comedy, I couldn't help but laugh at times over the sheer ridiculousness of it and surprisingly, there is very little sexual nudity. It has this weird vibe that brings back memories of Ken Russell's Crimes of Passion, which was a loony film but an entertaining one to boot too. Electra, on the other hand, is not as entertaining and the story wasn't exciting enough, even with the little twists towards the end.

Is It Worth Watching?

If you're really into nutty, weirdo sex movies, then yes. Other than that, no


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