Naked Tango (1990)

Rating: B-

Dir: Leonard Schrader
Star: Vincent D’Onofrio, Mathilda May, Esai Morales, Fernando Rey

[11] Schrader demonstrates much the same eye for stylish, kinky sex his brother did in Cat People, and the plot is even more ludicrous. Apparently, the way to win a girl’s heart is to force her into prostitution, slap her about a bit, have sex on the remnants of a broken windscreen and occasionally dance the tango with her, ideally in an abattoir. Still, it’s all very lush, with lots of reds, and May (remember the space vampire in Lifeforce? Same girl) is undeniably gorgeous as the bored wife who takes over the identity of a suicidal mail-order bride from Poland. As pure sexual schlock goes, it’s far better than 9 1/2 Weeks and you get a neat, knife-through-throat scene, too. I can’t really recommend it but, boy, did I enjoy it! [Trivia note: an uncredited Schrader was also one of the writers and directors of The Killing of America]