Saturday, April 18, 2009

Fair Game (1986)



Jessica (Cassandra Delaney) lives and works on a wildlife preserve in the outback. She runs afoul Sonny, Ringo, and Sparks, a group of ne’er-do-wells who drive a big scary truck and shoot kangaroos. Sonny? He’s the brains of the operation. Ringo? He’s liable to do some crazy stunts. And then there’s that halfwit Sparks. He seems to be a mechanic. Or something.

When Jessica tries to involve the local authorities, hoping that they’ll reprimand or punish the baddies in some way, she’s sent packing. Soon the battle escalates, until Sonny, Ringo, and Sparks tie Jessica to the front of their truck, rip her clothes off, and drive her around the outback. Then its personal. Jessica pulls herself together, and decides that there’s one clear path before her: kill every last one of those motherfuckers.



Mario Andreacchio’s Ozploitation, rape (?) and revenge flick is one of the more palatable offerings of the genre. It certainly helps that Cassandra Delaney (the future Mrs. John Denver) isn’t hard on the eyes. Basically, the film does a good job of escalating the conflict between Jessica and the trio of bad guys, until it’s clear that she has no choice but to take lethal action (and that she’s justified in doing so). The film pretty much never slows down (except for the occasional nude scene), and it never brings in new characters to distract from the main conflict, which is something it should be lauded for.

To give you some idea of what you're getting into, Fair Game features bad guys who seem straight out of Mad Max, driving around the Wolf Creek outback. Jessica, who until running into these thugs is a mild-mannered, uh ... wait, what does she do? She seems to be in conservation. Anyway, the point is, she's an amiable sort. And then she gets pushed too far...


Of course, Fair Game is famous (to the extent that it is famous) for a single scene: the aforementioned scene where Jessica gets strapped to the hood of a big ass truck, stripped down, and driven around the Outback. It’s hard to believe that the actress would go for it--and, as far as I can tell, it actually is Cassandra Delaney. And even if it isn’t, it’s one brave stunt double. This is the sort of scene that you can only find in exploitation films, and it’s the reason the genre is so, uh, vibrant.

Fair Game does have some things working against it. Chief among the films detractors is its terrible, terrible score, which reeks of all that is bad from the 80s. It’s hard to get into the action when some synthesized pop music is your backdrop. Seriously, it’s worse than some 80s John Carpenter scores…and that’s saying something. It might also surprise a few to learn that the acting in Fair Game is also a weak point. Go figure.


Unlike many movies of its kind, Fair Game doesn’t leave a bad taste in your mouth. Most similarly-themed movies are pretty sleazy, but this one--despite its subject matter--remains a bit more light-hearted and easy to swallow. The stunts are pretty great, and who doesn’t like watching a big truck smash things? Not I. And the big pay off really works--when Sonny, Ringo, and Sparks get their’s, they get it good.


cobra427 said...

Good movie it would even been better if they raped her first then tied her compleatly nude to the front of the truck and drove around with her as their trophy.

cobra427 said...

Good movie it could have even been better if they had raped her first then tied her compleatly nude to the front of the truck as their trophy and drove around.