Ladies Night (1980) Apr 14, 2021 9:30:04 GMT -5
Post by StevePulaski on Apr 14, 2021 9:30:04 GMT -5
Ladies Night (1980)
Directed by: Harry Lewis
Directed by: Harry Lewis
By: Steve Pulaski
Ladies Night opens on Betty (Annette Haven) and her husband spending an afternoon in a hot tub, although it's far from a romantic scene. Betty's husband is too fixated on the football game to pay attention to her. Betty rebels by putting a porno on the adjacent TV — one even more corny than the one we're presently watching — but he can't even take notice. She laments how if it's not Sunday Night Football, it's Monday Night Football, or football reruns, or any sporting event that takes them away from their sex life. Any woman who has watched Harry Lewis' penultimate directorial effort with their spouse has likely nodded in agreement or shot a stink-eye across the couch that went — like Betty completely nude in the hot tub — unnoticed by her husband.
Betty needs a release. Thankfully, she has loyal gal-pals in Irene (Lisa De Leeuw) and Angie (Nicole Black) who know a place where perpetually unsatisfied wives can go. They head to a swingers nightclub, largely populated by hunky males who sleep with everything that moves. The venue's MC is none other than Paul Thomas, singing classics like "As Time Goes By" and "Tonight" from West Side Story to set the mood. In one of Ladies Night's best scenes, Betty imagines herself on-stage, stroking the shafts of two performers until they pop. Washed in the dim neon blue glow, she clenches her cum-drenched hands as to reclaim both her sexuality and herself.
The process then begins as the ladies hook up with various performers at the nightclub. Meanwhile, their husbands are back home in Betty's hot tub watching the game, treated to a rendezvous of their own with the surprise arrival of young women for their own pleasure. Everyone gets a piece of the action except for Betty's husband, who is too entrenched in the game.
Lewis' film is leisurely paced, allowing us to roam around the club. It doesn't have an intrusive narrative insisting itself onto the setup; one that might have the girls leaving, going back to their pathetic husbands only to return the following evening. It takes place over the course of one night where steamy sex predicated on infidelity and adventure occur. Irene sets the tone early on, telling Betty her age-old motto: "if there's no food in the kitchen, you gotta eat out."
On that note too, it more-or-less demonstrates the female gaze as the ensuing sex is far more about the pleasure of the women than that of the men.
The best sex scene has the lusty and mature Nicole Black at the center. She is taken by a strapping young man and the two get down in a red leather convertible. She's an "old-fashioned" brunette, attracted to sensuality but skittish of impersonal positions. She cutely requests the two change to missionary, to which her beau would be stupid not to oblige. On top of the stylish setting choice, Black's performing prowess is on full display. She can act and she can act while having logistically challenging sex.
Herschel Savage — whose complete list of acting credits must rival Danny Trejo's, as he always seems to find his way into these projects, no matter how obscure — turns up frequently as a bartender getting the best of both worlds. He's pouring drinks while watching the game and being serviced by a young lady underneath the bar, which makes for some chuckle-inducing physical comedy. The only sin Ladies Night happens to commit is juggling too many sex scenes at once, interrupting the flow of intimacy. Anchored by three lovely dames, it might be an exercise in formula, but by the end, it proves the formula was worth exercising.
NOTE: You can purchase Ladies Night in a two-pack Peekarama DVD set alongside Her Wicked Ways: vinegarsyndrome.com/products/ladies-night-her-wicked-ways
Starring: Annette Haven, Lisa De Leeuw, Nicole Black, Paul Thomas, and Herschel Savage. Directed by: Harry Lewis.