Alice in Wasteland

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“Washing-up proved marginally more interesting.”

Ok, that brief is a little harsh, but it is true to say by the end, I had opted to double-task, and was watching this while I stood over the sink in the kitchen. It wasn’t as good as I expected: I was hoping for something along the lines of Faster, Pussycat, and instead got a turgid, over-extended crime drama. While it has all the right aspirations, the yawning chasm between that and its execution would require several days’ trip by mule to cross. Alice Wynn (Sondrup) is part of an armored-truck robbery, only to find herself double-crossed and left for dead by corrupt cop Jill Robbe (Beisner). Alice vows to recover the loot and take revenge on Robbe, and won’t let anyone – examples include her late mother’s boyfriend, psychotic pimp Ramrod or his Swedish assassin – stand in her way.

It’s not as good as it sounds, with the low-budget impediments and a largely amateur cast providing almost permanent blocks to success. About the only thing it shares with Faster, Pussycat is a complete lack of actual nudity – and unlike that, this doesn’t make up for that shortcoming in charisma. There are some amusing moments, such as adverts for a non-dairy product called “Pusé Whip”, or a film called Kill Jill, yet most of the individual scenes seem to solve little purpose except to get you to the next one – they’re just not very interesting on their own.

I did quite enjoy the two leads, with both Sondrup and Beisner surpassing the minimum necessary “Oomph” for their roles – the final scene together is perhaps the best thing about the movie (save the Swedish assassin). However, I don’t come into films expecting “the minimum necessary,” and when the other aspects largely fall short of even that mark, I have to confess that disappointment, and a resulting decision to get on with some housework, were the result. I’m left with the feeling that some things are perhaps best left to the professionals.

Dir: Lasse Jarvi and Peter Schuermann
Star: Roxane Sondrup, Michelle Beisner, Major Mandolin, Adam Ryan Villareal

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