Repo Chick -- Film Review

Latest satire from the director of "Repo Man" is both overstuffed and undernourished.

A “non sequel” to Alex Cox’s 1984 classic "Repo Man," the crazily plotted and deliberately garish "Repo Chick" only serves to provide further evidence of the cult director’s diminishing talents. Premiered a few years ago at the Venice Film Festival and now receiving a limited theatrical release by David Lynch’s Industial Entertainment prior to its appearance on DVD, this scattershot leftist comedy takes aim at plenty of political targets but rarely scores.

The endlessly convoluted plot involves the vapid Pixxi De La Chasse (the bland Jaclyn Jonet), a Paris Hilton-style heiress whose daily activities are being filmed for a reality television program that will be shown only in Dubai hotel rooms.

Disinherited by her wealthy conservative family for such transgressions as driving without a license and dallying with her male back-up dancers, she gets a job working as a repo chick for Arizona Gray (a very funny Miguel Sandoval) after her own car is repossessed.

She displays a precocious talent for her new profession, leading to an assignment to recover an antique locomotive that is secretly harboring purloined Soviet missiles as part of a plot by a terrorist environmental group to blackmail the U.S. government into, among other things, banning golf courses and turning the country entirely vegan.

The slapstick verbal and visual gags come fast and furious, but lack the desired satirical wit. The filmmaker attempts to defy the constraints of the obviously low-budget by positioning the actors in front of green screens at every opportunity, giving the proceedings the feel of a visually overstuffed comic book. Cox fans will nonetheless relish the over-the-top performances by such familiar repertory players as Sandoval, Del Zamora and Xander Berkeley, as well as Chloe Webb, who starred in his Sid & Nancy, and Rosanna Arquette and Karen Black.

Cast: Jaclyn Jonet, Miguel Sandoval, Del Zamora, Karen Black, Xander Berkeley
Director/screenwriter/editor: Alex Cox
Producers: Eric Bassett, Alex Cox, Bingo Gubelmann, Daren Hicks, Benji Kohn, Austin Stark, Simon Tams
Executive producers: Tod Davies, Ken Meyer, Chris Papavasiliou
Director of photography: Steven Fierberg
Music: Pray for Rain
Production design: Nicolas Plotquin
Costume design: Alexis Scott
No rating, 85 minutes