“Insert “Can’t get no Stratus-faction” pun here.”
The films put out starring WWE wrestlers are a bit of a mixed bag: some are mindlessly entertaining, while others are near unwatchable. And much the same goes for their Diva’s division: some are actually good wrestlers, others are clearly chosen for their looks. Stratus does probably fall into the former category, but this doesn’t do her adequate justice, and top-billing is probably a bit of a stretch – she’s held hostage more than she kicks ass. She plays Jules, one of three bounty-hunters, who pick up a guy that suggests a deal: let him go, and he’ll point them to a wanted man with a $100,000 reward. They accept, but when taking the guy in, get a call from mob boss Hal Lambino (Rafla) who offers them one million dollars if they deliver the bail-jumper to him instead. Needless to say, the transaction doesn’t go smoothly.
Stratus isn’t bad, especially considering this is her feature debut. However, cinematic fighting isn’t the same thing as fighting the WWE, and it shows: bounty hunters shouldn’t be using flying scissors and hurricanranas – it takes the viewer completely out of the scenario they are trying to build. To be honest, in that department, Stratus is entirely outclassed by Andrea James Lui, who plays one of Lambino’s heavies, and is impressive in every action scene she has – the two fights the pair have against each other, including a confined-space battle in an ambulance, showcase the difference in styles nicely. If you think Stratus looks better, you’re clearly a fan.
The main problem beyond this is a tired storyline, with aspects that should simply have been strangled at birth. For example, Jules working as a waitress in a strip-club, which is purely an excuse to get her into a schoolgirl uniform, serving no point otherwise. Fortunately, Chris has bailed for Facebook poker on seeing the words “Trish Stratus” – her tolerance for WWE Divas is close to zero – or the sarcasm levels in the room might have bordered on the lethal. There are ooccasionally moments of levity, mostly from Phillips; it’s worth sticking around for the end credits, to see some of the alternative takes unleashed. However, there’s little here which isn’t familiar, and between the brawls, it doesn’t do enough to hold the viewer’s attention.
Dir: Patrick McBrearty
Star: Trish Stratus, Boomer Phillips, Frank J. Zupancic, Joe Rafla
a.k.a. Bounty Hunters