What the hell?!?
Don’t ask me how the hell bottom feeder porn magnate Carlos Tobalina pulled together a cast of cult film standbys and faded Hollywood B-list glamour, but somehow…he did!
Despite parts for some of his favorite hardcore starlets (surprised Sharon Thorpe, the terrifying Iris Medina or linguistically challenged Nina Fause don’t make an appearance herein) and more than a few sleazy Z-film sequences, this one obviously isn’t another of the man’s adults only affairs, but a bottom of the barrel Hitchcock knockoff that wouldn’t have seemed out of place on late night pay cable(!)
Doofy surfer dude “Mr.” Mic Morrow and Mark Shannon lookalike “Mr.” Glenn McKay decide on a Strangers on a Train swap of services when they discover they share a penurious alimony situation with their ex wives.
McKay knows Morrow’s up for the action when he shares an absurdly sleazy story of drunken home invasion and homosexual rape by a pair of gay wrestlers, one of whom is Bill Margold (!) which he quickly avenged. McKay, for his part, was a cold blooded executioner in Vietnam. They seal their deal with mutual death threats (and a written contract!), so you know they’re committed, or should be…
Morrow lets the air out of “Miss” Susan Silvers’ crappy car’s tires, then offers his services for a lift to school for daughter Gina Tobalina (!) and fixing the flat. In no time flat, they’re in each other’s pants and she’s faking orgasms on a When Harry Met Sally level of cheesiness…
McKay gets the better end of the equation by far, with cute if dopey stoner blonde Cydney Hill (who’s not only vaguely Linda Haydenesque, but is blessed with one hell of a rear view), but both wind up discovering they’re better at satisfying the other guy’s frustrated exes (and fitting into their families!) than bumping them off…
The stars here all offer cameos – Ray and Wilde as detectives, Romero and De Carlo as judges, Brennan as a used car saleswoman, Mai Lin as a hooker, Z’Dar as a jilted boyfriend. Aesthetically speaking, much of the decor is hideous (check out Silvers’ living room, for starters). Hill’s son is practically a thalidomide baby and Silvers is damn scary looking herself, with that mannish ‘do and exaggerated features…but all that said, for a low rent, super sleazy “thriller” of this type, it’s pretty damn entertaining.
Tobalina keeps inserting the false scares (will they fulfill their contract, or will lust and the lure of the blended family win out in the end?) and there’s even a few comic surprises (the luggage pushed over the top of a mesa-like promontory intended to be a rockslide is priceless, as is the film’s final scene), but the bottom line is a film filled with lousy acting, old Hollywood and recent porn star cameos, and a seedy aesthetic marked by bad porn scoring and screenwriting.
Quick $200 walk on or no, you have to wonder if the “name” performers knew just what sort of film they were getting involved with…
For obsessives, there’s a VHS sourced variant of the film called “Wife Contract” that eliminates all the big name star cameos, with a few scenes reordered, no name actors serving as the judges and the detective bits missing entirely.
Definitely one of the more entertaining releases from Vinegar Syndrome of late, Flesh and Bullets comes recommended to trash film aficionados of all stripe, particularly those who pine for the days of USA Up All Night and the late 80’s/early 90’s heyday of Skinemax.