It is probably not something I should admit to anyone aside a therapist, but I grew up absolutely loving the hell out of late 70s/early 80s hard boiled revenge movies such as Death Wish and the like.
Now as an adult, I occasionally stumble across a title I somehow missed during those years. Ms. 45 was just such a picture.
This movie tells the story of a young mute girl who works at a sewing shop. She is innately shy, and private, and has that wounded cat look about her.
In most movies I would say having the same woman being raped twice in unrelated incidents on the same day would be ridiculous, but this was 1980s New York City, back before it became a Disney Theme Park.
After this horrific events the girl, played by Zoe Lund, unleashes her inner Charles Bronson/Django and decides enough is enough. Except that unlike the two aforementioned anti-heroes, she goes far beyond simple revenge or justice. She becomes viscerally excited by the murders she commits and basically declares war on the entire male population of Manhattan.
Lund is absolutely entrancing in this role. She goes from sympathetic, to creepy, to scary in a flash but never loses her humanity, which makes her all the more frightening.
This movie was made by the same director, Abel Ferrara, that made the original Bad Lieutenant and King of New York, so you kind of know what you’re in for here.
Ferrera in this movie is like Fellini on a really bad acid trip. Everything about this movie looks cheap and at times amateurish, but the style and direction is so consistent that you can’t take your eyes away from it.
This was an early VCR classic among kids like me. It was re-released a few years back now. Hopefully it finds a new audience. It’s definitely not for everyone, but for fans of the genre it’s a unique gem.
Ms. 45 gets a 3 out of 5: GOOD