The evolution of the modern woman has taken another leap forward. We now call her “empowered”, meaning she’s talented, self-assured, and fully capable of kicking some serious butt, figuratively speaking. Factor in a hot bod and a pretty face and you’ve got Holly Sampson’s character in Staying On Top, director/writer John Quinn’s latest film for Playboy’s Eros line.
The story begins as up-and-coming advertising exec Katherine Phillips (Holly Sampson) wins the chance to land a plum account at the agency where she works. It’s a major career coup, but the champagne-and-sex-with-boyfriend celebration is cut short when she learns that a jealous, back-stabbing VP (Angela Davies) has been soliciting (screwing) the prospective client for her own selfish interests, and Katherine’s dreams appear to be dashed. Down but not out, she quits her job to preserve her self-respect. And, while still in the clean slate/new beginning mode, also ditches her cheatin’ sleaze of a boyfriend (Danny Pape), a freeloading photographer with a wandering wienie.
You’ve got to admire Katherine’s independent, take-no-crap attitude as she plans her comeback; this chick does fine on her own, man or no man, as we see quite convincingly in a solo shower scene-one of two in this movie where the handheld showerhead is put to its intended purpose. Wet female flesh is a staple in John Quinn films (seen Key to Sex?), and this one is no exception. The babes get shiny all over in a majority of the sex scenes, with the best one being an oil-assisted, girl-on-girl massage party, where Holly Hollywood (as the masseuse, Heather) expertly treats Katherine and friends to glistening full-body rubdowns. It’s the lucky host (Ava Lake), however, that gets the the best stress relief of all-the special treatment-complete with mouth-to-mound “resuscitation”.
Unfortunately, one or two good scenes can no longer can carry the sophisticated (spoiled?) softcore viewer for 90-plus minutes, especially with such a predictable story that brings so little of that magic ingredient-sexual tension-to the characters and their relationships. Without much passion or heat, the sex tends to play out in a rather mechanical, porn-like manner. As a result, the whole thing falls a little flat, barely rising to the standards that its own director help set for the industry. And, while the actresses are all attractive, the only real “A-Team” player is Ms. Sampson.
Staying On Top isn’t what I consider a bad flick, and I suspect most fans will find it to be reasonably enjoyable entertainment. But, it’s a long way from being the “riveting, erotic scorcher” that Indigo would have us believe.