GIRL FROM THE NAKED EYE, THE: DVD
Street wise tough guy Jake (Jason Yee) is a driver for a seedy escort service operating out of The Naked Eye strip club. He soon falls for the witty high-class escort Sandy (Samantha Streets). When Sandy is found murdered, the only clues are the phone calls she made on her mobile the night she died. Jake is crushed. He loved her and now he'll stop at nothing to find her killer. Leaving a bloody trail in his wake, Jake risks everything to uncover the truth and take his vengeance.
Review by Andrew L. Urban:
A tinge of sweet nostalgia for the dark shadows of the hard boiled private eye genre swept through me as the film began with a shot of the cover of Dark Mystery magazine featuring a frightened, scantily clad blonde, a smoking gun and the movie title promising pages of thrills.
It continues with the as yet unseen anti-hero launching wryly into this tale on the noir side. The visceral hit is enhanced by Jason Yee's deep, husky voice, a mix of Clint Eastwood and Peter Coyote, guides us through a story of greed, crime, love, death, revenge and redemption in the underworld.
And just like those hard boiled PIs, Jake (Yee) has a big, soft heart and a hard, tough fist - although he tends to use martial arts to subdue and vanquish his - many - opponents along the road to vengeance. Exceptionally well choreographed and shot, the fight scenes - many of them in confined spaces like the lift or the corridors of housing blocks - are comparable to the extraordinary ones in The Raid (released in Australia March 22, 2012).
Even the basic story of a murdered hooker has that 1950s ring to it, but director David Ren and his star (and co-writer) Yee have fashioned something edgy, fresh and compelling out of the premise.
Samantha Streets gives the young hooker Sandy a sweetness that confounds the stereotype hooker, even a beginner - but given she is very young and turning tricks out of desperation after running away from an abusive home, we might allow her that licence.
Supporting characters are all rich and real, notably Ron Yuan as Simon, the manager of The Naked Eye who runs the escort service and gives Jake the job of driver to his girls. Jerry Ying also impresses as bad boy Johnny and Dominique Swain makes the most of her brief screen time as Alissa, a bar stalking hooker with a handy taste for murder mystery novels.
A contempo gift for lovers of noir.
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GIRL FROM THE NAKED EYE, THE: DVD (MA15+)
CAST: Jason Yee, Samantha Streets, Ron Yuan, Dominique Swain, Gary Stretch
PRODUCER: Jason Yee
DIRECTOR: David Ren
SCRIPT: Larry Madill, Jason Yee, David Ren
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Nax Da-Yung
EDITOR: Greg Babor, Richard Halseya
MUSIC: Danny Manor
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Suzanne Rattigan
RUNNING TIME: 84 minutes
SPECIAL FEATURES: .
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Third Millenium Entertainment
DVD RELEASE: November 20, 2014