Cast: Jessica Drake, Bill Bailey, Dana DeArmond, Jack Lawrence, Alektra Blue, Derrick Pierce, Misty Stone, Michael Vegas, Rocco Reed, Kaylani Lei, Xander Corvus, Lezley Zen, Seth Gamble, India Summer, Brad Armstrong Non-sex roles: Randy Spears, Tyler Knight, Frank Bukkwyd, Rich Bailey, Jack Vegas, Nikki Daniels, Tita, David “Crawdaddy” Lord, Crash, Eric Masterson, J. Banks, Jack Hoff
Length: 168:14 minutes
Jessica Drake (click for an interview)
Date of Production: 2012
Extras: The first disc had some trailers and the package had a fold open slip cover. The majority of quality extras were contained on disc two, the first of these being the 8:27 minute long Behind the Scenes feature by Lee Snijders. The emphasis was on the technical aspects of the shoot this time, the extensive crew a far cry from most titles shot these days. The next extra was a 5:36 minute montage called “The Girls of Countdown” where the ladies were each shown during their photoshoots, a Behind the Scenes of the sex scenes being shot lasting 20:30 minutes, a photogallery, some more trailers, a digital copy of the movie, a promotional reel (1:01 minutes), the usual spam, and three bonus scenes. The bonus scenes included Jessica Drake doing Xander Corvus from Craving II (14:21 minutes), Alektra Blue with Ramon Nomar from Busty Invaders From Mars (17:06 minutes), and Kaylani Lei with Ritchie’s Brain from Co-Workers Gone Bad (16:47 minutes).
Audio/Video Quality: Countdown was presented in the usual anamorphic widescreen as shot by director Brad Armstrong for Wicked Pictures. The director of photography was Francois Clousot, the editor Scott Allen, various others contributing to make this one look good. The use of special effects was modest but given the emphasis on character development, that was the better way to go here. The lighting varied per scene in a way many other companies just don’t bother with, making the scenes each appear to be crafted to the circumstances rather than generic. The flesh tones and composition of the scenes also contributed to making it stand out, the attention to detail appreciated. The audio was also handled with care, the mix of vocals, music, and ambient sounds generally a notch above the pack. The surround sound (in 384 Kbps) sounded as if it was done in post production but I couldn’t argue that it sounded as good as it looked.
Body of Review: Brad Armstrong is the lead director at Wicked Pictures, his movies around this time of year always proving special. Countdownis the name of his yearly original feature, the star studded blockbuster building up substantial buzz as a flagship title for awards season which is just around the corner. The story is different take on the disaster movies where an asteroid is set to destroy all life on Earth, the feature and sexual elements detailing just what some folks would do if they knew the end was near but had no way to stop it. Going into the show, I knew this would be a winner, the double disc blockbuster surely up for scores of nominations in coming weeks thanks to the exceptional direction, the performances by ladies such as Jessica Drake, Misty Stone, India Summer and others. Reports from those that have watched the movie on Wicked’s website have been universally favorable so here goes my look into the finished DVD set. The back cover described the movie like this: “A group of fringe astronomers have discovered Vesta, an asteroid the size of Arizona, which has fallen out of its orbit. Vesta is rocketing toward Earth at 200,000 mph with a scheduled impact date of 12/21/12. Scientists say it will create the equivalent of a 15.2 earthquake, and that life as we know it will end. What would you do? Wicked Pictures and award winning director Brad Armstrong bring you Countdown. This touching, passionate film is a must see for those who like great story-based adult drama. A brilliant cast gives the performances of their career, as they portray a diverse cross section of ordinary people in extraordinary times. The Mayan calendar ends on December 21, 2012 and Countdownhas begun...what will you do when the big bang comes?” Here’s a brief look at the scenes by cast and action, noting that condoms were used for those still interested:
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Scene One: Jessica Drake, the fetching hotty featured on the front cover, was up first in bed with Bill Bailey, the two kissing and going down on each other as the opening credits rolled. They were dressed in typical underwear but showing some appreciation for one another sexually, Jessica always providing a degree of passion worth watching. As she savored his pecker in a 69, he gobbled her gash, the single camera used for the tryst not as satisfying as if more of her perfect pussy could have been showcased, that fantastic ass of hers looking as sweet as ever during the initial vaginal plowing. The scene ended when he bust a nut of splooge all over her abdomen, the impressive glazing making it seem as though he had just come back from a vacation.
Scene Two: Dana DeArmond, playing a newscaster breaking the story, was up next with co-anchor Jack Lawrence as the two boned the story in while getting ready in the dressing room. A brief kiss led to Jack going down on her, Dana a bit over the top in her aural appreciation of his efforts. He fingered her as he savored her crotch, Dana blowing him far too briefly before some modestly active vaginal penetration positions ensued. She was fitter than ever and took his pecker up her ass as she diddled herself, his wad of genetic juice landing on her stomach when they were prematurely interrupted by a staffer.
Dana and Jack as newscasters
Scene Three: Alektra Blue, another popular contract gal, was up next with muscular Derrick Pierce at a cheap motel. They drove in with friends, their classic car looking nearly as sweet as the ladies (Kaylani and Xander were also in the vehicle). I’m pretty sure I’ve seen that car before, they just don’t make them like that anymore. Okay, Alektra was in bed with Derrick on top of her, their kissing leading to him assisting her with the removal of her attire. She left her boots on as he licked her snatch, Alektra pulling up her top to reveal her delicious rack as the flexible hotty gave quite a performance. She purred nicely and rubbed herself as he continued warming her up, his fingers probing her until she inhaled his cock with a fine blowjob. That led to some of the most active vaginal riding of the show, the young lady holding her own as he tore into that juicy slit. The ending load of population pudding came after numerous positions and even some anal plowing, his spunk gracing her upper thigh and ass before it cut away.
Jessica Drake with Rocco
Scene Four: Misty Stone, one of the most physically attractive ladies in all of porn for some time now, was up next in the so called Oval Office, as Tyler rejected her but provided Michael Vegas as a replacement. Misty’s kinky hair and kicking curves are always welcome in a fuck flick as far as I’m concerned, her recent starring role in the Men In Black parody sure to be on many a short list for awards too. The characters were given some room to develop as having a connection, Michael revealing his feelings for her given the likelihood of what would happen courtesy of asteroid Vesta. They kissed and he nuzzled her neck, working his way down to her shaven snatch where he serviced her completely. The cunnilingus and fingering showed them maintaining some solid eye contact, her ass in the air looking as exciting now as it ever has as she knelt on the desk. Misty slobbed his knob with some superb hand to gland abilities, the energy levels adding nicely to the replay and strokability here, the active vaginal riding showing both of them covered in a light sheen of sweat. The condom was more noticeable this time due to the skin tones but it was not overly intrusive to me, the guy removing it to douse her with ball batter on her crotch and leg.
Scene Five: Jessica Drake, playing the harried astronomer reflecting on her personal sacrifices over the years, was up next in the office with Rocco Reed. He consoled her and lightened the mood by drinking to her fourth grade science project, Jessica guzzling the booze down before unleashing a slew of inappropriate comments regarding her attitude when drunk. They kissed and caressed, her glasses remaining on as he felt up her legs and helped her realize some pleasure mixed with business could be a good plan. The oral lasted longer than most of the other scenes, his tongue flicking on her clitoris as she flowed freely with some juices. She worked his cock over to return the favor but she wanted him inside her pussy too much to dwell on the blowjob, the scientific array of equipment in the background brushed aside for them to fuck on the table. He ended it when he turned her over and boned her in doggy, Jessica taking the spunk to her face before she sobered up the next day.
Scene Six: Kaylani Lei, a lean Asian babe wearing blue jean shorts and a tight top, was up next with Xander Corvus, their melancholy musings at the diner connecting before they sat on that awesome car looking at the stars to wonder about the coming days. They shared a beer while revealing their feelings, the special moment hitting them full force as they kissed. He sucked her nipples and went down on her, Kaylani’s hummer moving into some vaginal sex showing a love connection between them. The hood of the car served as their bang bus, his sizable round of spew tossed off to her face where she savored the salty taste.
Lezley Zen with Seth
Scene Seven: Lezley Zen, a curvy brunette working at the diner, was up next with Seth Gamble, after closing time. He was a virgin looking to score and she had been helping him find a hookup, her efforts resulting in her popping his cherry at the counter. I haven’t seen Lezley in a new porno for some time (plenty of compilations though) but she was always a talented performer, Seth more than happy to engage her physically as they jumped each other aggressively. Her boobs came out and she inhaled his pecker, his own oral on her looking a little too polished for a newcomer but also given a few touches to allow them to play into their characters. Her strong legs and firm ass looked better than ever in the air with her head on the counter, Seth satisfying her before they did a mere two vaginal positions to unload his cock of semen, the fluid flying all over her abdomen to reward her efforts.
Vesta getting closer
Scene Eight: India Summer, an attractive brunette well established as a sexual dynamo, was up last with Brad Armstrong as the two shared a drink at a bar. His being off the wagon was drawn out but he clearly provided a lot of extra attention on developing the role to give it dramatic effect, the pair sharing a romantic dance before kissing led to him showing her his true “magic trick” with his hands and tongue. The heated tryst went from him getting her juiced up to her savoring his cock in front of the jukebox, a few active vaginal positions leading to a facial. While the scene was fairly brief, it showed a classiness Brad has long provided in his better works, the ending feature elements a combination of humor and drama that I found agreeable to the other elements of the movie.
Bonus Scene: Craving 2: It’s story time, as the lovely Jessica will be our story teller for the day. We are going to get some naughtier versions of some of the stories we grew up on. And we start off with Jessica, as the young lady who was thought to be able to spin straw into gold. What is she going to do? So with a little help from Rumpelstiltskin, played by Xander. He is willing to help her, if she helps him, and all that he wants is a simple kiss. And so the story continues, but the next night he returns, but he wants a little something more this time, a simple BJ will do this time. The princess falls to her knees and rubs and stokes his cock through his pants, and then slides them down and is amazed at the sight, and slowly kisses and licks his cock. As she continues, he reaches down and reaches for her tits. He cums and then leaves and returns once again the next night, and this time he wants to spend one night of fucking him. After some thought, she agrees. He lifts her up and goes for those boobs that he just got a little taste of the night before. And then heads south to taste her pussy, as he licks with his tongue. And as she continues to lay on the cart, he slides his cock in her pussy for some slow and steady fucking. She ends up bent over the cart and he gets a little rough, with some slapping of her ass and hair pulling during some doggy action. And when he can’t take it any more he pulls out and covers her ass in cum, and then she falls off to sleep as he once again finishes his end of the deal. (review by Sean DPS)
Vesta getting really close
Bonus Scene: Busty Invaders From Mars: At the hospital, the lovely Alektra, is working on an experiment with Ramon. She shows off the rack a little and tests his arousal as she turns the heat on. I think I’d be at a 10 pretty quick. She continues to undress and dance for him and then climbs on top and then decides to get some more info, as she heads south and bobs on his cock. She follows that up with a wet blowjob, going pretty deep on his cock, and then he insists she sit on his face for some 69 action. She ends up on the table, as he starts off with some missionary action, as once again we get some nice boob bouncing. There should be some titty fucking action to at some point in time, but we shall see. It seems the hard pounding is bringing her to the verge of cumming and losing her breath. She climbs on top and wiggles and hops her pussy on his cock for him, and then he drives her crazy once again as he takes control and pounds her pussy once again. The chemistry between these two, is what was missing the previous scene. Well after some spoon action, he pulls out and explodes all over her pussy, well I guess I was wrong. (review by Sean DPS)
Summary: Countdown by director Brad Armstrong for Wicked Pictures might not have been as ambitious as a few of the company’s previous yearly blockbusters but it was well ahead of the pack of competitors seen so far this year in most ways. The cast all appeared to handle their acting duties seriously and the sexual trysts were strokable with the kind of replay value I expect from a high end feature. Jessica Drake, Kaylani Lei, India Summer, and Dana DeArmond stood out as well suited for their roles this time, Brad Armstrong and Frank Bukkwyd providing the most solid male performances of the day (Frank definitely needs a nod for his non-sex role). The special effects were used just enough to convey the seriousness of the impending calamity rather than serve as the focal point (as would be the case in a mainstream flick that had little else going for it), the second disc of extras enhancing the amount of fuck for the buck strokability to make this Highly Recommended. In short, Countdown had outstanding technical aspects, a great cast, fine extras, and blended the sex with feature elements in a way only Wicked Pictures seems able to do consistently well, sidestepping the whole parody craze that is waning now and the romance lines that are seemingly taking over so give this one a look for the entertainment value as a whole and you’ll find it a pleasant surprise.
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