At the recent Feminist Porn Awards in Toronto, Shine Louise Houston’s “Champion” won Movie of the Year and its star, Syd Blakovich, took her Best Actor trophy back to San Francisco.
Houston, who also created the creepy/sexy eavesdropping series “The Crash Pad,” makes excellent ensemble pieces from a versatile but small talent pool, and her work is so consistently compelling (even for a straight audience) and well-shot that you’d think she got a huge budget by mistake.
Blakovich plays Jesse, a boxer whose love of the sweet science doesn’t leave much room for her partner Cathy (Jiz Lee) here playing a more femme role because, compared to the butch Blakovich, she has no choice. As Jesse crunches endless situps, Cathy is left to please herself (it is a porn movie, after all).
But it is a porn movie that addresses the sexuality of one of its characters rather than takes it for granted. As Jesse rises through the ranks of Mixed Martial Arts fighters, her manager, Tiny (Dylan Ryan), asks her to tone down “the gay.”
“Wear a little lipstick,” Tiny says.
But Jesse doesn’t. Instead, we cut to her swigging whiskey from a bottle and face-fucking fight groupie Madison Young with a strap-on. She fucks her so hard that you’re left thinking that no one will ever wear lipstick again.
It turns out that Jesse just needed to get something out of her system before donning a straight uniform. Tiny is incredulous when Jesse shows up in high heels and a skirt.
“Just one of the girls,” Tiny says.
You know that poor Cathy is long-suffering, but she also takes Jesse back after a humiliating photoshoot in which Jesse must het it up with her opponent, Violet (Dallas) in the Big Fight. Jesse is a complicated person, an adulteress, a cad, but Cathy knows something else: Jesse is like a drug.
Further complicating matters is another rival, the fight-fixer Bobby (Javier), who threatens to spill the beans on Jesse’s alternative sexuality to the intolerant sporting press (in the world of the film, being a lesbian MMA fighter is a career-ender, though my belief that every woman in the MMA is a lesbian does not impair my enjoyment of it).
“Champion” is an excellent movie and proof that you don’t need a huge budget to make a good porn flick, and that you don’t have to have a lot of dialogue to tell a story. I’d love to see what Houston could do with a straight adult movie.
- Buy “Champion” here
- See a Champion gallery here.