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Reviews » Blu-ray Reviews » Live Nude Girls (Blu-ray)
Live Nude Girls (Blu-ray)
Olive Films // R // February 19, 2013 // Region A
List Price: $29.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Ian Jane | posted February 21, 2013 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:

Directed by Julianna Lavin in 1995, Live Nude Girls more or less revolves around a woman named Jaime (Kim Cattrall) who has more or less hit the ceiling in her acting career where she's starred in a few B-movies. When we meet her the date of her third wedding is fast approaching and the girlfriends that she grew up with are celebrating the occasion but planning a bachelorette party/sleepover. The party is to be held at the home Georgina's (Lora Zane) shares with her cohabitating girlfriend Chris (Olivia d'Abo), who will more or less be asked to hang out away from the partiers on her room until the event is over. One of the married members of the group, Jill (Dana Delany), will be attending and so too will her sister, Rachael (Laila Robbins), who she doesn't always get along with and adding to the drama is the fact that Jaime's old friend Marcy (Cynthia Stevenson) has recently split up with long term beau.

With everything in place, the girls all arrive more or less on time things start off with a bit of a flop. This isn't the most intense bachelorette party ever thrown, in fact, it's fairly dull - until the topic of sex inevitably comes up, over pizza and booze at the table. At this point the ladies get more interested as fantasies are discussed and conquests revealed throughout the night and into the long hours of the early morning and eventually, though not surprisingly, even Chris gets in on the fun.

Basically a series of vignettes (making up the flashback and fantasy/story sequences of the movie) strung together by a fairly mediocre plot (hanging out and talking at a bachelorette party), Live Nude Girls does at least offer up a fair bit of what the title would lead you to expect the movie would contain. A few of the ladies wind up in various states of undress and given that the focus here is on a small group of close friends discussing their sex lives with one another, that only makes sense. Things even occasionally get legitimately steamy, but while we get occasional doses of drama and humor - enough to make this moderately entertaining - when the film veers off into more serious melodrama it quickly loses steam. We wind up with a disjointed picture that can't quite figure out if it wants to be a raunchy sex comedy told from a female point of view (think Bridesmaids maybe?) or a more typical 'chick flick/romantic comedy' and instead it winds up in an awkward space sort of in between the two genres.

The film makes some interesting contrasts and comparisons in the fantasy world imagined by Georgina - who thinks about being ravished by men while being involved in a lesbian relationship with Chris but this doesn't add a whole lot of depth to the storyline, instead it seems only to show that fantasy can sometimes ignore sexual boundaries. The film also introduces a gay character at one point, we assume to inject more humor into a certain situation, but it just comes across as a bad stereotype unnecessary to the core storyline. In fact, there are a few situations where the film veers from its focus on the group of female friends to follow around some loosely connected male characters, but not once does this add much of anything, instead it makes the movie seem unfocused and erratic. With that said, the moments that work in the movie do tend to work well. Some of the humor is very effective and there is a nice sense of bonding between the characters. Though this is hardly doing much in the way of portraying any sort of diversity among the group, it does take the whole 'birds of a feather' approach and work it in occasionally interesting ways. The movie is far from a complete disaster, but neither is it much of a masterpiece. It's passable entertainment that Cattrall's and Delany's respective fan bases will probably enjoy that throws in some dashes of spicy sex here and there to keep things interesting.

The Blu-ray:

Video:

Live Nude Girls arrives on Blu-ray framed at an aspect ratio of 1.78.1 in an AVC encoded 1080p high definition presentation. Olive Films obviously hasn't done a full blown restoration on the movie but evidently they were working with source elements that must have been in pretty decent shape and the widescreen framing looks fine here. Colors are nicely reproduced without looking to have been artificially boosted at all while black levels are strong though there are moments where contrast looks a bit iffy. Detail is definitely improved over what DVD could provide but there are some shots that look noticeably softer than others, likely due to the way that the movie was shot rather than the transfer itself. All in all, the movie looks quite good here in its high definition debut and there are no issues with edge enhancement or noise reduction to be reported.

Sound:

The only audio option on the disc is a DTS-HD 2.0 Stereo mix in English, there are no alternate language options, subtitles or closed captioning of any kind provided here. There are no problems with the audio here but as the feature is primarily dialogue based with the characters placed in front of us don't expect much in the way of impressive channel separation. With that said, as low-fi as the audio might be in terms of design, the track here replicates it without issue. Hiss and distortion are never issues and the levels are consistently balanced throughout the movie. Fancy? Nope, but it works.

Extras:

Aside from a static menu offering chapter selection, there are no extras of any kind on this Blu-ray.

Final Thoughts:

Live Nude Girls has its moments but lacks the consistency that a lot of viewers are probably going to expect from it, given the quality of the cast. As such, the movie is a bit hard to completely recommend, though the moments that do work make it worth seeing at least once. Olive Films' Blu-ray looks and sounds just fine but is devoid of extras. Those who know and love the film can be confident in the quality of the disc despite the lack of supplements, everyone else would probably be best served with a rental before a blind buy.

Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.

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