Buzzing with enough violence for a dozen direct-to-video features, NO CONTEST doesn't take full advantage of its satire-ripe backdrop: terrorists invade a televised international beauty pageant. With an all-star cast of B-movie faves, NO CONTEST vibrates with knock-down, drag-out
techno-trashiness before it self-destructs in overkill.
Security guard Crane (Robert Davi) and down-on-her-luck contest hostess/movie star has-been Sharon Bell (Shannon Tweed) are among those unprepared for the take-over of the Miss Galaxy Beauty Pageant. Along with his band of operatives, Renegade ex-CIA spook Oz (Andrew Dice Clay) holds Miss USA,
Candace Wilson (Polly Shannon), hostage in order to collect a $10 million ransom from her father, Senator Wilson (John Colicos). Oz threatens to blow the building sky high and kill the beauty-contestants off one by one; to show that he means business, he and his men bump off a contestant and some
Sharon communicates with Crane about how to safely shed the explosive electronic bracelets that Oz has ordered her and the young women to wear. Her kickboxing work in the movies helps her to lead the contestants in striking back. With the bad-guy mortality list skyrocketing, Oz keeps a rooftop
rendezvous with Senator Wilson, whom he lambastes for a former betrayal. While a bomb-squad officer works out a complex dismantling strategy for the mega-explosives, a hotel lobby shoot-out culminates with Sharon tangling with Oz in a glass elevator. After the police mask the ultra-bomb's
frequency with the hotel's p.a. system, Crane and Sharon both blast the disgruntled Oz to death. The luxury hotel and most of the contestants are still standing.
Cleverly exploiting action buffs' passion for Soldier of Fortune weaponry, NO CONTEST is a viscerally exciting punch-fest that collapses in a welter of face-offs. Before wearing out its vicious welcome, NO CONTEST jabs viewers with fight scenes potent enough to make you feel the bruising
uppercuts. The movie scores feminist points by allowing the timid contestants to play American Gladiator and by gifting centerfold Tweed with her niftiest action-movie showcase in eons. Exuding sexual confidence and intelligence, she almost single-handedly undermines an extraordinary commando
mission. Although the redoubtable Davi is wasted and Clay is still a side of beef dressed up as a movie star, the retinue of back-up villains (oily Nicholas Campbell, change-of-pace nasty Roddy Piper) keep things lively. If the script had been tightened, and humor had triumphed over the film's
sadistic bent, this molotov cocktail of an action flick might have been an undisputed champ instead of watchable runner-up.(Graphic violence, extreme profanity, extensive nudity, sexual situations.)
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- Released: 1995
- Rating: R
- Review: Buzzing with enough violence for a dozen direct-to-video features, NO CONTEST doesn't take full advantage of its satire-ripe backdrop: terrorists invade a televised international beauty pageant. With an all-star cast of B-movie faves, NO CONTEST vibrates w… (more)