A Z-movie in more ways than one, ZIPPERFACE divides its time between female exploitation and feminist-bashing. It divides its characters with a machete.
In the fictional, vaguely noirish Palm City, shapely Lisa Ryder (Donna Adams) becomes the municipality's first woman detective, just in time to be faced with a series of brutal murders of prostitutes. Under heavy pressure to collar a culprit, Lisa feels the heat from both her male-chauvinist
colleagues and a blonde shrew of a lady mayor, Angela Harris (Trisha Melynkov). "I don't care who you arrest!" declares Her Honor, who is obsessed with the upcoming elections.
The serial sex-killer is a Darth Vader sound-alike clad head-to-toe in black leather and metal studs, crowned with a zipper-mouthed headpiece. Zipperface entices fresh young whores to his lair for S&M sessions that climax with their decapitations. Det. Ryder's efforts to unmask the fiend lead
her to a questionable priest, a transvestite City Hall aide, and a Robert Mapplethorpe-type erotic photographer. The enthusiasm with which she drops her uniform for a sexual encounter with the latter can only mean that ultimately, Lisa will squeeze herself into a shiny black bustier and walk the
streets herself as a decoy for Z-face. Nabbed in the nick of time, he turns out to be Brewster Harris (Bruce Brown), henpecked husband of the Mayor, whose position as the "doormat of an ambitious woman" drove him to his mania.
With a script by Barbara Bishop that was "developed" by Ralph Lucas, ZIPPERFACE is low-grade in all departments, not just gender politics. The acting ranges from worst to worse, with a bunch of Anglo performers at one point pretending to be a street gang by using Cheech Marin-style accents. The
post-synced sound does little to help matters. Bearing a 1991 copyright, ZIPPERFACE premiered as a home video release in early 1993. (Violence, adult situations, sexual situations, nudity, profanity.)
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- Released: 1993
- Rating: NR
- Review: A Z-movie in more ways than one, ZIPPERFACE divides its time between female exploitation and feminist-bashing. It divides its characters with a machete. In the fictional, vaguely noirish Palm City, shapely Lisa Ryder (Donna Adams) becomes the municipali… (more)