A woman meets a seemingly indifferent woman in a bar, and tells her about a dream she had. The dream is about a female vampire picking up a woman and starting a relationship with her, eventually turning her into a vampire too. The woman in the bar, it turns out, is also a vampire, and after a long conversation, turns her new friend. They go for a walk and the first woman gets bored and just ditches her on the street, walking off laughing.
That’s it. That’s everything that happens in this movie. I would love to tell you I’m joking, or being a little facetious, but no. Donald Farmer has done it again! This is the most unfinished-seeming movie I think we’ve ever covered, and I have a theory, but more on that later. It’s yet another movie that manages to be bizarre in a whole new way, so our admiration for the great man grows still further. It’s also a welcome return to the ISCFC for Debbie Rochon, who doesn’t get the chance to show much of her acting chops, but is definitely the best of the cast. It’s got lots of different sorts of filler too!
The initial scene, in the bar, is insane. According to the end credits, most of the characters in this movie don’t have names (and IMDB definitely gets at least one wrong) so I’m going to have to go by their actual names. Anyway, Debbie Rochon is sat at a bar, and Maria Ortiz (credited co-writer) just sits next to her and starts talking. Perhaps ranting would be a more appropriate word, as she reveals to Rochon, whose body language could not be any more uninterested, her most intimate fantasies about vampiredom. Ortiz, who I’m guessing wrote her own dialogue, trips over her lines and repeats herself and generally acts like a lunatic, but Rochon, who remains turned away from her the entire time, humours her.
The majority of the movie is Ortiz’s dream, starring two completely different actresses. I admit I’m assuming that the footage we see is her dream, because the movie doesn’t tell us. A couple are casing a bar before robbing it…well, I say bar. They’re obviously in an empty room with a dark curtain draped behind them, but I’m not sure whether to think this is some deliberate audience alienation stuff from Farmer, or he had ten minutes to get a scene done, no money and no props. The plan is, the woman (Jenny Wallace) is to seduce the owner of the bar while the guy (really not sure who he is) robs the office. So far, so good, but while Wallace is in the “bathroom” (which looks like someone put an unplumbed toilet in the middle of an empty room), snorting some cocaine to give her courage, she’s approached by Caroline, the only person referred to by name in this entire thing.
Now, I know I’m as guilty of hyperbole as the next low-budget movie reviewer, but Kashmere, the lady playing Caroline, could well be the worst actress I’ve ever seen – In a field with many, many strong competitors, she stands head and shoulders above them all. I presume she was an exotic dancer (this is her sole movie credit, thank heavens) who was the only person to turn up for the audition, because I’ve seen corpses who’d be more convincing as a sexy vampire than she is. She bites Wallace, which makes her her slave, sort of, and after Wallace and the boyfriend indulge in a remarkably extended sex scene (I began fast-forwarding, it went on for a good three or four minutes), Wallace sees her at the window, bashes her boyfriend over the head with a bottle and the two of them go off together, with Kashmere eventually turning her into a full vampire (whatever that means).
If you thought the Wallace / sleazy boyfriend sex scene was unerotic and too long, wait til you see her and Kashmere go at it! Although it’s difficult to read any emotion on Kashmere’s face, she appears thoroughly bored, and the two ladies sort of lay next to each other, naked, occasionally stroking each other on the arm or the leg. Again, it’s so bad that I’m beginning to wonder if this is all some Dadaist experiment. The second sex scene, positions the same as the first, at least has something moderately interesting visually, as scenes from classic horror movies are projected onto their bodies. But this pales into insignificance next to filler so blatant they might as well have replaced it with a blank screen.
After a heavily processed scene in a graveyard, where Kashmere may or not kill Wallace’s boyfriend, our two lesbian vampires go to a cinema – well, five chairs in a room somewhere, that looks a bit like a cinema. Bearing in mind this scene is a dream, apparently, being related by Ortiz to Rochon in the bar…we’re then treated to approximately 10-15 minutes of the movie they’re watching! It’s a spy thriller set in Moscow (and apparently filmed there, if the credits are to be believed) about some woman who can kill people with a touch, and the KGB guys who want to stop her. The sheer balls to put something like this in your movie is almost to be commended, almost. So, the couple kill a guy in the cinema, go home and live the rest of their lives happily.
The ending is Ortiz then doing the same thing to Rochon, the two of them walking through New York for a few minutes – which is the most interesting thing in the movie because they’re really filming, guerrilla style (best guess, they hid their camera) on the busy streets. Then Rochon fails to attack some street bum, and is left by Ortiz, with the final scene being Ortiz walking off laughing. Wrap your minds round that!
If I had to guess, I’d say this is the result of Farmer trying and failing to get three different movies off the ground. There’s the stuff with Rochon and Ortiz; the stuff with Kashmere and Wallace; and the Russian stuff. Neither of the two vampire related stories have anything close to a resolution – one is “they killed a bunch of people and lived happily ever after”, and the other is “huh?” Kashmere is so mind-blowingly awful an actress that perhaps Farmer did everything he could to limit her time on screen. And the spy movie? It’s a rich stew of truly baffling moments. Also, if you have Debbie Rochon in your movie, who’s a great actress in the right project, and she’s barely in it compared to the amateur hour people surrounding her, then there’s some serious questions you need to ask yourself.
I’m sorry for asking more questions than I answer (information is very thin on the ground about this movie). I wonder how Maria Ortiz got a writing credit on this? It’s her only one, and she only ever acted in Farmer movies, before dying in 2000, at age 27. I get the feeling she could have been a decent actress, too, but the dialogue she gave herself, about vampires and eroticism and dreams, while possibly very important to her, sounds like lunacy coming from the mouth of a person in a movie. I wrote in my notes “this is the dumbest conversation ever” and underlined it several times over the course of “Red Lips 2”.
So, yet more ultra low budget lunacy. Drink it in, dear reader.
Rating: negative thumbs up
PS – and yet again, pictures borrowed from the fantastic blog Taliesin Meets The Vampires. Go read their stuff, it’s great.