Story Details

Erotic Underground Interlude: Last Call (1991)

Posted By themoviesleuth 849 days ago on Entertainment -  A murderous white-collar criminal.  An exotic dancer with a score to settle.  Sex in a spinning officer chair with the Greatest American Hero.  Shannon Tweed's second lead performance, Last Call is the epitome of direct to video sleaze while simultaneously celebrating everything about the genre that allows it to continue to live in the subconscious of the medium today.  Featuring the finest performance of Tweed's career, a twisty neo-noir narrative that celebrates its frivolity, and lived in post 80's ambiance, this is essential erotic thriller viewing. Paul; a real estate agent, finds himself involved with gangsters and high society grifters.  Partnering with a mysterious dancer whose heart is set on vendetta, the lovers take desperate measures to right several wrongs and ensure justice is served.  This is a derivative story that manages to overcome its simple plot with pure grandiosity.  Shannon Tweed stars as Cindy, a secretary who moonlights as a performer. Her chemistry with William Katt's Paul is playful and dangerous, with Tweed showing an unprecedented amount of range, flittering between romance and revenge at the drop of a hat. Matt Roe supports as the villainous Jason and he spends the majority of his scenes sucking the scenery and making advances on anything with a heartbeat.  There's a hilarious/quasi nauseating side plot involving his mother-in-law that has to be seen to be believed.  Rounding out the cast is cinematic legend Joseph Campanella who plays his underworld titan with equal parts ooze and panache.  It is evident in virtually every one of his scene-stealing appearances that he knows exactly what kind of picture this is and his complete submission only enhances the inane proceedings. Jag Mundhra, who established himself a force within the erotic thriller subgenre with Night Eyes, depicts his urban cornucopia as two extremes.  Captured by James Mather's gritty cinematography, everything has a post-soap opera vibe while clearly communicating two very distinct worlds.  At the top is the glitz, a place where the privileged spend money with abandon and those beneath are barely of import.  The interior of Jason's sanctum reflects, a place of games and carnal desires.   On the other end is the inner city nightmare where Cindy dwells.  All of the touchstones of the MTV ethos are present, music, bizarre costumes, and hostile street walkers at every turn.  In between is Paul, vying to ascend yet still removed from the dregs.  It's an interesting approach because the bulk of the story bounces between these two places, and yet Paul's personal life is never explored.   This unique choice, especially for the early 90's allows Tweed to take center stage and it works due to her solid performance.  The sex sequences (we know why you're reading this) are above average, particularly because Katt and Tweed are committed to the material.  The aforementioned spinning chair is inventive but almost outdone by copulation on an ominous skylight that later plays an important part in the climax.  While there is always a level of exploitation present in the vast majority of these types of films, Mundhra's approach is tame in comparison to most and the result is a sexy, carefree experience that delivers on everything it promises.  While the acting is over the top and the plot razor thin, it is the sheer spirit of the cast that ultimately makes this worthwhile.Now streaming on Tubi with Ads, Last Call is a fun, carefree, softcore neo-noir.  Its strongest element is Tweed's surprisingly good performance combined with a director who understands what he is making.  While not one of the most risqué or even shocking entries in the genre, Last Call is an undeniably seductive foray into 1991.  --Kyle Jonathan 

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