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House Party

Studio: Original Sin Films » Review by Disco Dirge » Review Date: 2/1/05

XCritic's Advice: Recommended

GENRE: Gonzo Hardcore Feature
DIRECTOR: Barrett Blade
STARS: Alexis Malone, August, Charmane Star, Jadra Holly, Tianna Lynn, Charlie Lane, Monique Alexander, Nadia Styles, Cheyane Collins, Scott Styles, Dez, "Cousin" Tom, Barrett Blade
LENGTH: 110 mins without bonus material

It's interesting to watch established porn stars branch out into moviemaking. Since they have spent so much time in front of the camera, the choices they make once they're behind it become a definite reflection on their view of the industry, as well as the types of films they've made previously. Someone known for their proclivity toward pretty porn who turns around and makes gonzo-style gross-outs is obviously either living an onscreen lie, or trying to tap into a market they hope reaps some megabuck rewards. Someone famous for fucking anything and anyone who turns around and crafts complicated storylines with effective characters has probably been hiding their auteur tendencies behind a veil of available roles. And then there are those who merely want a piece of the hardcore pie, to snag a part of the billion dollar action before their time, and the easy availability of XXX material, disappears.

Barrett Blade is a relative newcomer to the industry, a personable punk with a definite rock and roll rebel stance. Tattooed, sort of stocky, and primped like a pop culture icon, he represents the crossover appeal of adult films into and because of the music industry. Using this Blink 182 ideal to its fullest, Barrett has moved up from supporting player, to featured actor, to star. And now he has branched out into making, not just performing in, hardcore pornography. Under the auspices of his Planet Barrett label and the Original Sin Films organization, he has started to release DVDs that present his vision and variation on smut. Using a gathering at his crib for a group of his horny friends and one particularly dopey family member House Party offers up a familiar concept (perhaps TOO familiar) to put across its fuck and suck dimensions. The results are occasionally steamy, sometimes stupid, and typical of the entire camcorder concept of modern flesh peddling.

The DVD:
Barrett Blade should perhaps contact a lawyer. He is bound to be sued by either Seymore Butts (for stealing his moviemaking modus operandi) or said filmmaker's foul-mouthed relative Cousin Stevie (here shamelessly parodied by some dude in a bald wig named "Cousin Tom"). While the aforementioned warning is really just a joke, if you've ever seen one of Mr. Butt's tushy tales, you've seen House Party. In actuality, if you've seen the glorified gonzo of Michael Stefano, Robert Herrera or Manuel Ferrara, you've partaken in the kind of pussy pounding and prick puffing Barrett has to offer here.

The narrative is non-existent. Barrett has people over to his house for a party (thus the title) and they pork the living snot out of each other. Then a randy, ridiculous character (the previously mentioned retarded relative) shows up, looking for poon, and he takes a series of pratfalls, and partakes of a few Jackass like stunts. Barrett obviously likes his women pretty, petite and pert in their mammary capacity. There is a slight sameness to all the tantalizing talent, a wide-eyed dreaminess that comes across nicely on screen.

Aside from Barrett, the other main man putting member to mons is the similarly spike haired Cheyane Collins, doing his best dumb "dude" buddy routine (talk about type casting). He spends a lot of time talking to the camera (and by direct inference, Barrett) and he gets two of the six scenes here. The other guys are just prop cocks, present to provide the cunt cleaving concepts that XXX is known for.

The doorbell is ringing, so it's time to see who's coming to the celebration in hopes of cumming. Let's begin the scene dissection with:

Scene 1: Alexis Malone, Cheyane Collins
Using a handheld camera and an almost exclusive first person point of view shooting style, Barrett walks in on Alexis and Cheyane watching motocross, of all things. This leads to a weird minute or so of insert footage with ATVs and motorcycles doing all manner of tricks in a desert setting. When we cut back to the couple, they are in full feel-up mode. After the semi-steamy foreplay, Cheyane heads for the honey hole and eats Alexis out with determination. She returns the tongue flicking favor with a nice, slow blow...job. The first position explored is mish, quickly turning into doggy and then spooning. Both Ms. Malone and Mr. Colllins seem perfectly content to buck and bounce all over Barrett's furniture, turning up the tempo until it's time to deliver the dick drippings. After a little implied V to M, Cheyane pours his joint juice into Alexis's mouth, and we get a slow motion, two-angle replay of the pop. After some oral clean up, it's time to return to the festivities.

This first installment in Barrett's bawdy bonanza shows both his strengths, and his weaknesses, as a porn director. He does spend a lot of time on the couple themselves, allowing the chemistry and the passion to build. He doesn't go overboard with the extreme close-ups, and we also have a very good sense of what it transpiring personally between the performers. Alexis is very attractive, and she matches up well with Cheyane's overly groomed bronzing. On the down side, the lack of real copulation options means the sex has a sameness that doesn't transcend the home movie mannerisms of the film. Indeed, this feels like Barrett catching his buddies bumping uglies, and that detracts from the heat. Still, this is a nice erotic opening to our raunchy residential rodeo. Score: 7 out of 10.

-- sponsored by --

Scene 2: August, Scott Styles
Searching his home for other party guests, Barrett runs into August and Scott doing the dirty deed in a back room. The couple seems oblivious to their secret cinematographer and explores each other with discernable desire. After the before play, August licks log with relative abandon, adding a little itty bitty titty fucking to the menu. Scott heads for snatch country and does some snacking. Meat meets monkey in the following variants: reverse cowgirl, doggy and mish. When the money moment arrives, Scott shoots his wang water all over August's face. Naturally, we get a second angle glimpse of this jizz bath, and the resulting oral cleanup. In a rather odd juxtaposition, August and Scott seem much more lively than Alexis and Cheyane were in the first scene, yet they barely generate the same amount of XXX-citement. Scott adds almost nothing to the nookie, doing his interchangeable best to ball with conviction. August is aggressive and amorous, but the results just don't add up to ample arousal. A decent scene, but nothing spectacular. Score: 5 out of 10.

Scene 3: Charmane Star, Barrett Blade
Barrett has just spent a few minutes in his bathroom with Jadra Holly (who has a cabaret-only, non-sex role here for some reason) and just as she's getting ready to give up the glory, Mr. Blade leaves and heads to his bedroom. There he finds Charmane fluffing her fuzzy lumpkins with auto-erotica ecstasy. Seeing potential pud in front of her, Ms. Star makes a beeline for Barrett's boner and gives him some excellent, exciting head. She licks and slurps, and adds in the complimentary ball action that she knows guys go gaga over. Barrett then spins this winsome wench over for a session of deep doggy, followed by carnal cowgirl and scintillating straight sex. There is ample V to M in between each positional possibility. Barrett eventually delivers a face full of funny fuck foam, and we again witness the ball brine in all its slow motion replay wonder.

Starting off with a personal POV, and ending up with someone else obviously helming the camera, Barrett and Charmane have, arguably, the best sex scene in the set. Ms. Star is ravenous, eating dick with delirium and taking a tooling with intensity. Barrett usually responds well to this kind of attitude, and the resulting sequence just sizzles. Too bad this couple couldn't impart their love of porking to the rest of the cast. In the next couple of scenes, the performers could all use a little extra excitement. Score: 7.5 out of 10.

Scene 4: Tianna Lynn, Dez
Taking up residence in Barrett's back garden, Tianna starts off by sucking on Dez's dong, giving this non-descript dude a decent session of burp and slurp. She adds in ball action, and lots of spit. Before we know it, she is supine on a garden bench, and Dez is drilling her in straight mish mannerisms. The resulting pumping causes Tianna to squirt, and suddenly, Barrett has a womb-based water feature as part of his landscaping. After a sequence of the two cowgirls (regular and reverse) and the complimentary V to M that goes with the switch, Ms. Lynn and her lover go back to liquid launching mode - meaning mish and our leaky lady lets loose with two more fuck fountains before doggy drives Dez to his own secretion release. He gives his paramour a pop in the eye, and Barrett lets us see it again in frame-by-frame instant replay.

Aside from the squirting, which is all about Tianna and her skills at letting loose the love liquid, there is nothing special and particularly potent about this pairing. Dez is rather dopey, with a body that 98 pound weaklings would giggle over. There is very little chemistry between the couple, and the only true tension comes from wondering when Ms. Lynn will trickle again. If it weren't for the ejaculation aspects of the sequence, this cold coupling wouldn't warrant much attention. Score: 5 out of 10.

Scene 5: Charlie Lane, Monique Alexander
The best way to handle this scene is to say that it is a typical girl on girl same sex snoozefest, with the inclusion of the only-occasionally arousing strap-on dynamic. After all the tit licking and pussy plucking, clit sucking and ass eating, the faux phallus makes an appearance and the following facets are unceremoniously experienced: blowjob, doggy, mish and V to M. Aside from the constant chatter between the lovers (Monique is supposedly walking Charlie through her FIRST bit of lesbian loving) there is nothing the least bit interesting here. Hardcore directors need to learn that gal/gal groping is like explosions in an action movie. If you've seen one, you've seen them all and it takes a whole Hell of a lot to make them interesting or iconoclastic. There is nothing remotely arousing here. Score: 2.5 out of 10.

Scene 6: Nadia Styles, Cheyane Collins
Our final fuck fest puts Cheyane back in the pile driver's seat as he convinces Nadia to get nasty with him. After some routine kissing, Mr. Collins heads for crack country, and simultaneously sucks on cunt and tosses salad, much to Ms. Styles delight. The heady happiness is returned as Nadia nibbles on knob. Cheyane proves that JPX is not the only man in hardcore who can hump at several hundred RPMs per position, and pistons his pole into Nadia, reverse cowgirl style, in a tantrum of incredibly quick dicking. As if to cool down the cock, Ms. Styles offers up V to M, and then it's on to a session of spoon. Hoping to hump the Hades out of his honey, Cheyane takes a kind of mountain mashing position, places a finger up Nadia's ass, and bangs her in the basic butt up mannerism until he's ready to release. He serves his shaft sauce directly into Nadia's mouth, and she laps up every protein-based bit.

Sadly, Nadia is no match for Cheyane. She is attractive, and very willing, but there is a routine aspect to their sex scene that guarantees more limpness than longing. Barrett's camera craziness gets a little out of hand, as half the scene is shot from OUTSIDE the room, looking in through a window. While it is aesthetically interesting, this peculiar POV doesn't generate a great deal of erotica. Sadly, the same could be said for this entire sequence. Score: 4.5 out of 10.

As an initial effort in this type of freestyle fuck and suck, Barrett shows a great deal of potential. Though he should really get his own routine, perhaps something surrounding his rock star roots (the house party and/or visiting friends ideal is just way too overdone in the digital domain of dirty DVDs), the basic elements for successful ball and socket shenanigans are in place. It needs to be said again every gal here is very easy on the eyes. They dress in a provocative, pleasing manner and handle their half of the humping with genuine aplomb. All of the Cousin Tom shtick, on the other hand, is just stupid. Aside from the stupidity of the obvious skull cap (you mean this buddy wouldn't take a razor to the scalp for his old pal Barrett?), getting kicked in the nuts, lit on fire or belted with a breakaway bottle is just not very funny. The Dirge takes that back, it would be hilarious had it happened to someone other than this inbred idiot.

His presence proves that not every idea Barrett has works well in House Party. Some of his situations and scenarios sizzle. Others just lay there, generating very little heat. Barrett has a nice way with the camera, keeping the couples in equal balance with the copulation to give us a hint at the ardor between the actors. He doesn't overuse the close-up and keeps the crazy angles to a minimum. But the overall feeling is still on the amateur side, like a kid with a new toy, checking out what he can do. Mr. Blades should really try something connected with music, or perhaps go into straight features using some of his more gonzo ideals to spice up the sex. House Party is a decent beginning. Let's hope Barrett finds his muse and makes it work for, not against him.

The Video:
While not quite camcorder crappy, House Party does have transfer issues. Barrett's image is overly soft, limiting the amount of detail and contrast we expect from a less stylized helping of hardcore. The picture tends to white out whenever light pours in from a window or door, and we get momentary phasing whenever the lens passes through an exterior/interior portal. The awkward adjusting aside, the color correction is a tad faded, with fleshtones failing to feel totally lifelike. There are minimal compression problems, and just a few editing shortcomings. If Mr. Blades was trying for a home movie feeling, he definitely achieved it. If he was shooting for something more professional, he's missed it by a couple of technology upgrades.

The Audio:
The sonic situations with House Party are equally problematic. Using that old built in microphone dynamic, Barrett and anyone speaking above their normal vocal range (like Cheyane) sound find. But everyone he talks to, every girl who enters the house or who walks up to the camera, can barely be heard. The sex is understandable enough (some of the cast are STRIDENT in the lovemaking) and the background hip hoppiness is expertly mixed in (the music never detracts from the scene). Yet this is very much a one-sided sonic experience. You'll be working overtime with the volume control if you want to hear everything going on at this occasionally inaudible gathering.

The Extras:
Sadly, the lack of substantial bonus material adds up to a trifecta of underwhelming technical specs for this DVD. While it's probably unfair to expect a Behind the Scenes featurette or added scene from a company making its first foray into the world of adult filmmaking, providing something as near bare bones as this disc will not be making the consumer of the corporeal all that happy. The standard gallery and cum shot servings are acceptable, but they really don't offer anything interesting or out of the ordinary. Original Sin needs to find a way to flesh out their DVD releases, less the buying public move on to other, more lavish, helpings of hardcore.

Final Thoughts:
No one expects an untried director, trying out his cinematic chops for the first time, to offer up something novel or new. But Barrett Blade has developed a reputation, at least as a performer, for being somewhat brash and cocky in his adult actor 'A' game. He has the ability to turn a standard scene searing with his gratuitous gourmand persona. Too bad so little of this lust for life is evident in House Party. While this DVD is still recommended, mostly for the attractive cast and a couple of sizzling scenes, this still feels like a letdown. It rates a decent 5.5 out of 10 on the Disco Dirge Peter Meter. Couples will probably claim some marital assistance from Barrett's bonanza. As a result, a Cohabitation Certification is awarded. While the jury is still out on whether Mr. Blades can make a go of this new career behind the lens, it is clear that this is the trend, not the glitch, in the modern world of porn. Here's hoping that other actors turned auteurs stay true to their talent, and not wander off into uncharted territory. This is one House Party that kind of overstays its wanton welcome.

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