Deep in the Valley
Playing like an especially icky version of Pleasantville the new straight to DVD release Deep in the Valley answers the age old question of what would it be like to live in a porno. The star of the film is one Chris Pratt known mainly for playing Andy Dwyer, a hapless, stalker-ish ex-boyfriend on Parks and Recreation and why, exactly, he would take this role is the first question that leaps to mind. The perks are rather obvious (topless coeds for as far as the eye can see) but on the downside his name will forever be associated with this pervy mess.
Here he plays Lester, an amped up version of the already slow Andy who has enough stupid on him to shame Miss Teen South Carolina. He lives a modest life with his roommate Carl (Brendan Hines) until one day a mysterious old fashioned peep show booth arrives at the door. They step to check out the scene only to be magically transported to an alternate universe in which everything is just as it is in their favorite series of pornographic videos. Obviously Lester is overjoyed at this development and sets out to fulfill his wildest fantasy (“Two at a time, twice a day”). Carl, however, is the more domesticated of the two and though he too enjoys the scenery spends most of his time trying to return home to his dog and fiancé.
Since the movie needs some sort of conflict to drive the action forward writer/director Christian Forte has included a subplot that involves an overzealous cop that chases our heroes all over town. Of course there is no real reason for this other than to have scenes in which people accidentally barge in on naked girls showering. There is also a Dude-like character named Diamond Jim (Christopher McDonald), the Hugh Hefner of this universe, who shows up to dispense cryptic advice and then disappears into thin air. He might have been amusing if he wasn’t so blatantly just filler in between scenes of overt, in-your-face sexuality. It takes all of two minutes and twenty seconds for the first breasts to be bared and from that point forward everything just feels like a poorly staged reenactment of a Girls Gone Wild video.
If there is a saving grace it is the universe itself. Forte really went all out in an effort to make sure that every porno institution is covered here. The neighborhood is comprised of one pink sorority house after another each one complete with a Slip N Slide and a never ending wet T-shirt contest. Every girl represents the frat boy ideal, they all have young, tight bodies and contribute little other than perpetual coos and squeals. They all have an insatiable appetite for sex, names like Bambi and are always running off to cheerleading practice. Even Denise Richards is there (perfect) in something of a matronly role setting the bar to a new low for just how far a former Bond girl can fall. This world is so goofy and over the top that one might, for a second, contemplate the idea that perhaps this film is Forte’s attempt to critique how absurd man’s objectification of woman has become. But then you remember that in fact the opposite is the case and that really this is just him using these young girls for their bodies so that he can sell more DVDs.
If you do know what you are getting into here then the experience won’t be all that painful. There is really no harm in adding a little bit fun and humor to your regular porno. One character, Busta Nut played by Tracy Morgan, even drops two laugh inducing lines and is the high point of the film. Everything here is clearly for repressed males and, really, who would begrudge them a chance to watch two hot blonds lick whipped cream off of each other?
Starring: Chris Pratt, Brendan Hines, Denise Richards, Tracy Morgan
Director: Christian Forte
Runtime: 96 minutes