Rick Jacobson’s “Bitch Slap” is exactly what you expected it to be. If you’ve seen the trailers – yeah, that’s what the rest of the movie is like. If you heard the title and saw the posters and conjured up lurid images as a result, then congrats, you pegged it. And if you thought “Bitch Slap” was an action-packed “Sin City” wannabe (but with a smaller budget) starring very attractive women in very tight clothes that are prone to spontaneous water fights, you aren’t wrong. Of course, the fact that the actresses are in on the joke makes it somewhat less offensive. If, that is, you’re inclined to take offense at the sight of beautiful women slugging each other like sacks of meat when they’re not ogling or grabbing each other’s bountiful assets.
As “Bitch Slap” opens, femme fatale stripper Trixie (Julia Voth) is alone and surrounded by what looks like a battlefield. Flashbacks reveal that Trixie had arrived at the isolated desert locale (with only a mobile home in the middle of nowhere) with two other ladies, the take-charge vixen Hel (Erin Cummings) and the tough, take-no-shit brawler Camero (America Olivo). The trio has in their possession an abducted local crime boss named Gage (Michael Hurst), whose stash the ladies are after. As tales of a mysterious, uber dangerous kingpin named Pinky are related and an encounter with a local deputy survived, the ladies go about looking for Gage’s hidden cache. Meanwhile, more flashbacks reveal hidden motivations for each women, leading to suspicion and accusations, while a surprise appearance put all their lives in danger.
Okay, so maybe my little synopsis above makes it sound like “Bitch Slap” has more going on than it really does, when the truth is, it really doesn’t. The plot is pretty simple, and director Jacobson and co-writer Eric Gruendemann resort to even more flashbacks that gradually peel away the past to provide filler material. Most of it, like the first half dozen flashbacks, is overly superfluous, though they do add to the film’s T&A quotient, so whose complaining? All the while, the film seems to be heading towards a Keyser Soze moment, but honestly, unless you’re just not trying you will have already figured out the film’s Big Reveal the second one of the girls mention “Pinky”.
Of course Big Reveals are probably not why you’re even considering watching a movie like “Bitch Slap”. To its credit, the film certainly knows why you’re going to be grabbing the DVD off your local videostore shelf (or for you married men out there, ordering it online and trying to hide it from the missus), and it certainly delivers enough bangs for the buck. Granted, some of the fights do tend to go on a tad too long, but that’s probably the point. And anyways, there’s something to be said about watching two gorgeous gals kicking the living tar out of each other, and then asking for more. Props to all three actresses, but in particular Erin Cummings and America Olivo for going full-bore with the ridiculously over-the-top stunts that Jacobson puts them through. I imagine the film’s main trio left the set with bruises daily.
Although the star of “Bitch Slap” is Voth, Cummings, and Olivo, the film features a number of notable cameos from the world of Sam Raimi-produced syndication, where director Rick Jacobson made his bones behind the camera. Kevin Sorbo, Hercules himself, plays a slick secret agent, while “Xena” gals Lucy Lawless (a future co-star of Cummings in “Spartacus: Blood and Sand”) and Rene O’Connor play nuns. Obviously with a movie like “Bitch Slap”, you either strap in for the ride or you’ll be left in the dust pointlessly trying to figure out what the hell is going on. The film’s three lead actresses are simply gorgeous, with Julia Voth sizzling throughout the movie in that gold one-piece number. Good God that is one incredible, er, wardrobe choice.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, “Bitch Slap” is definitely not for the easily offended. The film is so politically incorrect that it amazes me Jacobson managed to get actual actors (with, you know, acting talents and what have you) to play his three leads. The film itself is split into two distinct shades – the silly, over-the-top flashbacks that usually take place in front of a green screen ala “Sin City”, and the grittier, bloody and boob-tastic moments in the desert. Mind you, not that you’ll ever mistaken “Bitch Slap” for a serious movie, though I imagine Jacobson probably has it in him to do a serious crime film if he was so inclined in the future. Until then, enjoy the gratuitous violence, extra helpings of boobage, and plentiful groping that is “Bitch Slap”.
Rick Jacobson (director) / Eric Gruendemann, Rick Jacobson (screenplay)
CAST: Julia Voth … Trixie
Erin Cummings … Hel
America Olivo … Camero
Michael Hurst … Gage
Ron Melendez … Deputy Fuchs
Kevin Sorbo … Mr. Phoenix