Sunday, April 20, 2014

Ms. 45, All Men are Evil

The late 1970s and early 1980s were a weird time in New York City.  The Son of Sam was spreading his carnage, and George Steinbrenner turned the New York Yankees into a soap opera as he kept firing Billy Martin.  The movie "Death Wish" starring Charles Bronson gave people hope about tackling crime.  Also during this time, "I Spit on Your Grave" began the rape/revenge genre in film.  This brings us to 1981's "Ms. 45," an incredibly violent film starring Zoe Lund (1962-1999).  When not acting, Lund served as an advocate for the use of heroine....ironically, she died of drug related causes in Paris at the age of 37.
The plot:  Lund portrays Thana, a timid and mute seamstress in New York's garment district.  On her stroll home one evening, a thug pulls her into an alley and rapes her.  Without the ability to call for help, she scampers back home only to walk in on a burglar who rapes her at gunpoint.  As she endures the second rape, she reaches for a crystal apple (perhaps symbolic of Eve's fall from grace), and conks the thug in the head and finishes him off with an iron.  She now has a gun (.45 caliber) and a new attitude.  No longer meek, she cuts up her 2nd rapist and places him in garbage bags in her refrigerator.  She disposes a piece of him each day on her way to work, finding different trash cans on her walk.
Armed with a .45, Thana is slightly more confident.  One day a creep follows her and chases her into an alley and she deposits a round between his eyes.  Easy...and slightly enjoyable to our newly created homicidal maniac.  Each killing brings her more and more out of her shell.  She, one night, dolls herself up with make-up and a risque wardrobe and hits Central Park and mows down five would be rapists in just a few seconds.  This movie turns into an orgy of carnage as she also offs a Saudi Arabian prince and his driver on her way home.  The New York Post starts reporting on these mass killings beside the news of the latest Billy Martin firing as Yankee manager.  As she finishes disposing of the remains of her second rapist, she feeds the last few pieces of him to a neighbor's dog. An incredibly violent conclusion approaches which see, a now sexed up, Thana heading to a Halloween party as the date of her boss who constantly sexually harasses her (can you guess his fate?).  Oh yes, her costume?  A nun.
This movie is violent and drips of symbolism.  The final scenes have her dressed as a nun, and her intended final victim, dressed as Dracula.  In all, she kills 18 times, all captured in these reels.  This film reminds us more of "Death Wish" than "I Spit on Your Grave" but both influenced this work.  Director Abel Ferrara keeps this a stylish work, and masterfully creates a character that starts out as a victim in waiting, to a horrific predator.  See "Ms. 45" but be warned......your weekly quota for motion picture violence will be filled in these 80 minutes.


  1. Not Ferrara's best, but I can't stop watching this one...

  2. I find myself aroused at this. I am thinking this is a must see.