Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Frank Stallone, Jane Badler, Cameron Mitchell, Shayne Leith, Elliot Frantz
Director: Josh Spencer
Genres: Action & Adventure
Decent, low-budget, direct-to-video, noir thriller
Thomas M. Sipos | Santa Monica, CA | 02/26/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The release of AMERICAN GIGOLO in 1980 resurrected interest in the 1940s noir style, leaving BLADE RUNNER and MIAMI VICE in its wake, as well as a flood of cheaper, direct-to-video films that were shot throughout the 1980s.
EASY KILL (1989) is a typical example, reasonably entertaining, not much better or worse than any of the other low-budgeters. It's got the usual tiny cast and few sparse sets, all to keep the cost down.
I bought EASY KILL because it stars Jane Badler, best known as the evil alien in V. Others may get it for Frank Stallone (Sly's brother). Cameron Mitchell (THE TOOLBOX MURDERS) has a small role as a bartender. You may wish to see this film if you're a fan of any of these actors, but there's not much here otherwise.
Story concerns ex-cop Frank Stallone, who owns a bar. One night a beautiful but troubled woman enters (the requisite femme fatale, played by Jane Badler). Stallone tries to learn what's bothering her. She claims her husband wants to kill her. Well, being a femme fatale, of course she's lying. She ensares Stallone in a plot that involves drugs and murder and betrayals.
This is a real low-budget effort. The house is nice, but not a rich person's house. Ever notice that in these direct-to-video efforts, they often shoot in some middle class house that we're supposed to believe is in a real expensive neighborhood? And it doesn't look it.
Noir films are noted for their hyper-stylized dialogue (to the point of parody in the noirish and excellent STREETS OF FIRE), but EASY KILL's dialogue is remarkably bland. And they keep repeating the same bland remarks. I lost count of how many times Stallone begins a sentence with "Look."
"Look, don't worry."
"But I am worried. I'm sorry I got you into this."
"Hey, don't be sorry."
"But I am sorry."
"Look, it's all right."
Another oddity: the film seems to have been shot silent, then dubbed in afterwards. All the dialogue sounds disembodied, without ambient sound, as if it was all shot in a sound studio. Doesn't matter if the location is inside a moving car, in an alley, or in a house, the dialogue has that same clear, bland quality, unaffected by surroundings. The lips are mostly in sync, although once Badler's lips are grossly out of sync.
I'm guessing they shot the entire film silent to save costs, then had the actors dub all their lines in a sound stage over a few days.
The story is reasonably entertaining if you like the actors, but nothing special.
This DVD is full screen. No special features, apart from a few trailers."