Andy Sidaris returns to the silicone-enhanced well with Picasso Trigger, a 1988 action-adventure B-movie that naturally features a fleet of no less than seven Playboy Playmates. Once again, the filmmaker is in charge of the screenplay. And once again, “bullets, bombs and babes” are the order of the day.
The world of Picasso Trigger is soaked in sunlight, with a thin veneer of the art world lying just under the surface. The villains are sinister and a painting of the titular fish is somehow at the centre of the action. Sadly, there are no toxic cancer snakes and the film is less outlandish than its predecessor.
The wicked Salazar (John Aprea), also known as Picasso Trigger, is wiped out and Miguel Ortiz (Rodrigo Obregón) steps into the power vacuum to start eliminating members of the Agency. This presses Donna (Dona Speir) and Taryn (Hope Marie Carlton) into action, where they assemble a pile of gadgets and guns to handle their business.
Travis Abilene (Steve Bond) is rekindling his romance with Pantera (Roberta Vasquez) and attempting to manage things in the Agency. He works with Edy (Cynthia Brimhall) and the Professor (Richard LePore) to support Donna and Taryn in their efforts, while Jade (Harold Diamond) kicks in a little martial arts magic.
The plot is, as always, incidental to the revelation of boobs and the explosion of various bomb-related instruments. The game plan of Picasso Trigger involves less overt nudity in comparison to Hard Ticket to Hawaii and Malibu Express, but the action is a little more explosive and the plot is a little more involved.
Unfortunately, the greater concentration on gravity means that Picasso Trigger loses a lot of its B-movie appeal. This is a tighter, graver picture and it lacks deliberate humour and charm. The babes and beefcakes are surprisingly underutilized and even the best sex scenes fizzle out after just a few seconds.
Most of the moist moments are annihilated with abrupt cuts, as Sidaris’ desire to inform the audience of the day of the week takes over. The real libidinous letdown comes in the form of Pantera, whose assets are apparent but sadly clandestine.
While Picasso Trigger may lack sexy style, it definitely doesn’t want for explosiveness. There are more big bangs than anything else, with remote control cars and discharging boomerangs accounting for some of the best scenes. The gunplay is wild, with the babes, bullets and blood galore.
Donna and Taryn prove their prowess in terms of taking out the bad dudes, while Jade shows off his martial arts skills. In one sequence, the black-maned man’s man drops a white-belted twosome with a blood-spattered exhibition just in time to pull the succulent Edy away from her workout.
Despite its flock of Playboy Playmates and its wealth of detonations, Picasso Trigger isn’t as strange or stimulating as Malibu Express and Hard Ticket to Hawaii. It is consequently less exhilarating, but it still serves as a discreetly functional sun-kissed romp.