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Monday, 13 March 2017

Retro Review: Illegal In Blue (1995)

Illegal In Blue
Cast: Stacy Dash, Dan Gauthier, Paul Giambalvo, Trevor Goddard, Sandra Dee Robinson
Genre: Direct To Video Erotic Crime Thriller

Plot: A cop taking personal leave after he witnesses money stolen from the police property room becomes involved with a beautiful singer, who may have killed her husband

'Softcore Erotic Thriller With Raunchy Sex, But Lacking In Genuine Thrills'

Illegal In Blue is a title that sounds so vague one wonders what this thing is that is coloured Blue and deemed Illegal. Still, with a bad name for a film, surely the film itself must be intriguing itself. 

In this case, however, the answer is evidently no, it is not. Besides the poster not featuring the two main stars, but rather 2 anonymous look-a-like actors passing themselves off as the characters. And yet I also learned that motion picture production and distribution company, Orion - home of the original Terminator, Robocop, Cadillac Man & Silence of the Lambs- had a hand in this so-called low budget, direct-to-video release. Orion had been struggling a lot during the 1990s, and with Illegal In Blue, it all but became the final nail in the coffin for them. 

Disgraced cop Chris Morgan, who got suspended for making allegations of corruption, moonlights as a cab driver at night, who then falls head over heels in love with a nightclub singer, Kari, who becomes a chief suspect in the murder of her wealthy husband. 

Illegal In Blue was directed by the same guy who did the '80s TV detective series, Hunter, who after that show went on to direct softcore X rated films. It also has so many plot holes, along with story-lines that occur out of nowhere and with no context to them, whatsoever. The lack of continuity is baffling. Right after when Chris's girlfriend dumps him after she finds out he has been sleeping with the suspect, she disappears, never to be seen or heard of again. 

The plot and the set-up are oh so predictable and nothing that we haven't seen before. The only thing that barely draws attention to this film, is the erotic sex scenes. The sex scenes generate a fair amount of heat themselves. However, there are few examples of other films of this type that manage to sustain my interest and more so than the lovemaking antics themselves by also offering an entertaining narrative. The dialogue is pitiful and so garbled, lacking in range and dimension. The story itself goes from making one trifling plot hole to another and most of it makes little to no sense, it's almost as if the writer comes out with one silly twist to another, yet with each attempt, they never try to explain virtually how and why this happened. Put it this way: it's like watching a film but when things happen, they never justify themselves and in the context it is in, that one ends up wondering, shaking their head in dismay. That was how I reacted with each plot twist that occurred.

The performances are forgettable, particularly by the main two with lead hunk, Dan Gauthier virtually wooden. Stacy Dash was better in Clueless and Mo' Money- yet I was surprised to see her here and going down the nude front. Her acting performance also lacked range and her delivery was very stilted and one-note. Didn't like the cop character played by Gauthier; talk about a dirty cop, not only is Chris terrible at his job he just comes across as naive and clueless & cheating on his girlfriend, even though he thinks he is smart. Yet he is not and towards the end when he got his just desserts, I didn't have any empathy for him. 

Illegal In Blue is your fairly typical low-grade softcore crime film, the likes you virtually see on those obscure adult cable channels, with plenty of nakedness on show and not much substance between it. 

Final Verdict:

This is a typically routine & gratuitous T&A affair that is the same film as Basic Instinct, with a cop sleeping with the suspect. But without the excitement, twists, believability of the story and quality of performances. 

Yet for a thriller, it doesn't thrill or excite me one bit and the whole thing didn't leave me wanting more. The main plot is left unresolved somewhat, as I never knew for sure if Shari is indeed the killer. 

With the motivations of the characters going awry in a barrage of cliches, badly written dialogue, sex scenes & predictability, and not forgetting the idiocy of the cop character, who doesn't care where he sticks his you-know-what and into whom, the film becomes so easily forgotten about that I could care less for Chris and Shari. 


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