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The Double-D Avenger   D

William Winckler Productions

Year Released: 2001
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Director: William Winckler
Writer: William Winckler
Cast: Kitten Natividad, Haji, Raven De La Croix, Forrest J. Ackerman, Mimma Mariucci, Sheri Dawn Thomas, Larry Butler.

Review by Michael Scrutchin

What is there to say about this movie when the title says just about everything you need to know? To be fair, The Double-D Avenger is billed as an homage to the films of Russ Meyer (director of Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! and Beyond the Valley of Dolls) and I've never seen a Russ Meyer film, so maybe I'm not the most qualified person to be reviewing this movie. In any case, I'll start by saying that its running time is only 74 minutes. Gee, it seemed longer.

It stars Kitten Natividad (from Russ Meyer's Beneath the Valley of Ultravixens) as Chastity Knott, the owner of a popular little pub who gains superhuman powers after sucking on a plant that has the power to cure her breast cancer. And, boy, those superhuman powers couldn't have come at a better time. The evil bikini bar owner Al Purplewood (Larry Butler) wants her dead because his bar isn't getting any business because everyone goes to hers. Purplewood sends his brainless strippers (who never strip) to take out Chastity Knott. Little do they know that Chastity has donned tights and a cape to become (drum roll please) the Double-D Avenger. Could this be the first movie ever starring a cult movie actress over 50 as a superhero? Best not think too hard on this one.

I can't think of a single reason to recommend this movie, but I know people who might enjoy it. Yes, it's a terrible movie. And writer-director-producer William Winckler knows that he's making a silly trash movie. And there's nothing wrong with trash cinema (hey, I dig John Waters), but this movie doesn't work. It's just not funny.

Wait. To be fair, I'll give you an idea of the kind of humor prevalent in The Double-D Avenger. There's a stripper named Ooga Boobies (Sheri Dawn Thomas) whose vocabulary is limited mostly to the phrase "Ooga Boobies" (and, yes, it's a long-running gag). After the strippers fail to kill Chastity, the evil bikini bar owner makes each of them lay across his lap so he can spank them and one of them screams, "Shiver me titty timbers!" But wait. There's a scene where the Double-D Avenger tells an overweight woman in a lingerie store to call 9-1-1, to which the woman replies, "I don't know the number!" And when the German dancer makes her entrance and does her little dance, I nearly stopped the tape out of sheer embarrassment for everyone involved in this movie.

But it's okay. The movie isn't too painful. It's a bad movie and it's supposed to be, but it never reaches the point where it becomes so bad that it's good. It's just bad. Period. Pushing it further into outrageousness and absurdity could only have helped, since it feels like it's playing it far too safe. It's exploitation, sure, but of the relatively innocent variety. Of course, it would be unfair of me not to point out that The Double-D Avenger, which was shot on digital video, is actually pretty well-made. The lighting, camerawork, and editing is competent and the movie looks nice enough, but technical competence is worth little here.

And for those of you looking for nudity, you'll be sorely disappointed. There's cleavage and big, bouncing breasts abound, but nary a nipple rears its head. Unless, of course, you count the nipples poking through the Double-D Avenger's skin-tight getup, which are captured in quite a few loving close-ups. Yes, there are people who might enjoy this movie, and I'm sure they know who they are. It's not the worst movie ever made, but it might have been better if it had been.

Review published 11.11.2001.

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