Synopsis: Sparks ignite into flames of passion when a socialite meets a sensual stranger in Two Moon Junction, an erotic adult drama from director Zalman King (Nine 1/2 Weeks, TV’s “Red Shoe Diaries”) that features “some of the steamiest sex scenes this side of an X rating” (David Sheehan, KNBC).
Sherilyn Fenn (Boxing Helena) stars as April DeLongpre, a beautiful southern debutante who’s about to marry a handsome man as priveleged as she. But stirring within the refined April is a raging sexual desire that erupts when she locks eyes with Perry (Richard Tyson, There’s Something About Mary), a rough-hewn, muscle-bound carnival worker. Drawn together in an erotically-charged confrontation of wills, they embark on a journey of unquenchable desire that will change their lives forever.
eyelights: Sherilyn Fenn. the stately Southern homes.
eyesores: Richard Tyson. the leads. the dialogues. the lack of heat. the editing.
“Darling, don’t ever take a Southern woman for granted.”
There was a time when I’d pick up anything even remotely related to ‘Twin Peaks’. I loved it all: its quirkyness, its visuals, its music, its cast. Naturally, like any red-blooded guy, I had a crush on Sheryl Lee, Sherilyn Fenn, Lara Flynn Boyle and Mädchen Amick; I’d watch anything they were in.
So when ‘Two Moon Junction’, starring Sherilyn Fenn, caught my eye, I just had to get my hands on it. The fact that it promised something sexy was added incentive, of course. So when a local video store put its copy on the market, I made sure that I picked it up – no matter that it was second hand.
I only watched it the one time.
Fast forward something like 20 years later, and it’s readily apparent why: ‘Two Moon Junction’ fails on almost all counts – except for overindulging Sherilyn Fenn fans with as much guilty pleasure as possible (Fenn is featured in nearly all of the picture and often in various stages of undress).
The plot is simple: April is from a wealthy Southern family. Having just graduated from college, she’s about to get married to an ambitious young man. But one night she meets Perry, a manual labourer who came into town with a traveling carnival. The attraction is immediate and they begin a love affair.
April’s whole future is cast to the four winds.
And she can’t control herself.
Honestly, this kind of fodder is so commonplace that it would have required a steady hand behind the camera and pure animal passion in front of it to make it work. But it has neither: writer-director Zalman King must have phoned this thing in while Fenn and co-star Richard Tyson just fizzle.
Fenn is lovely as ever (despite her character’s “Blonde Ambition”), and though she’s never been the finest actress, carries the picture fairly nicely. Perhaps this is due to the modest skills of the supporting cast, but she does rather well for herself (of course, my brain might be fogged up…).
Tyson, however, is a blight on the picture. His bargain bin Val Kilmer-meets-Kurt Russell schtick was annoying to the Nth degree, especially since the character is a complete douche-bag – who mystifyingly wins everyone over with one-liners that are neither funny nor clever. He’s 100% pure beefcake.
The two together is really just a waste of celluloid. Sure, she’s lovely, and by some standards he’s good looking, but there’s no magic or heat between them. Sure, they go through the motions ably, and there are a couple of spicy touches, but there’s no apparent reason as to why they’re a match.
Even the sex feels fake, with April crying when she comes.
You’d think she’d never had an orgasm before!
The dialogues are the worst: the pair turns on a dime between being all hormone-induced mushiness and pounding on each other over apparent slights. Hot/cold torrents are the source of many passionate affairs, I suppose, but I don’t dig it and these characters say the dumbest and most damaging things.
A perfect example of this erratic behaviour is when, after a night of “passion”, April returns to Perry’s motel room to find him flirting with the help. He’s dismissive and self-righteous, she’s whiny and entitled – so they insult each other publicly until he apologize to everyone for her like a brute.
And wins applause from everyone.
And wins her back.
The dialogues are so crap that nothing in the picture feels authentic, whether it be the romantic advice that April’s grandmother offers her, or the friendly encounter that she has with Patti Jean, another of Perry’s conquests. Do people actually interact this way? Maybe I’m in the wrong movie…
The film even suffers from technical ineptitude, such as its editing, which is abrupt and sometimes makes the film slightly inarticulate; it’s as though the editor wasn’t versed in cinematic language. And what was up with the overdubs that didn’t match the actors’ lip movements? Couldn’t they mask it?
‘Two Moon Junction’ is a pretty movie, between its leads and the setting, what with its beautiful stately Southern homes, but it’s just as underwhelming as the titular setting itself winds up being at the end. In fact, the whole ending is a complete misfire (pun intended, for those who’ve already seen it).
King produced a sequel seven years later and the only returning cast member was Louise Fletcher as Belle, April’s grandmother. I saw it around and didn’t even make the connection between the two. An amusing title like ‘Two Moon Junction Two/Too’ might have piqued my curiosity some, though.
You know, for laughs.
But I highly doubt I’ll return to the original.
I’ll get my dose of Sherilyn Fenn elsewhere.
Date of viewing: June 24, 2017