Las Vegas Lady

They say, “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”  I give you a film that happens in Vegas…why, oh why didn’t it stay in Vegas?  Think of 1975’s “Las Vegas Lady” as being a bargain basement version of “Ocean’s 11.”  Instead of eleven rat packers trying to rob five casinos in one night, we get three ladies trying to rob a casino boss’ office.

The film opens with Lucky (Stella Stevens) meeting with a mysterious, shadowy figure at a western themed tourist attraction outside of Vegas.  She doesn’t know who the mystery man is, but he has a plan for her to lift half a million dollars from the slimy manager of the Circus Circus Casino, Mr. Eversull (Geroge DiCenzo).  Connie employs the assistance of two gal pals who work at the casino, magic show assistant Carol (Lynne Moody) and trapeze artist Lisa (Linda Scruggs), to help with the heist.  Lucky also happens to be sweet on Vic (Stuart Whitman), an aging casino security guard and former cop who is one of Eversull’s favorite whipping boys.

Then…nothing happens!?!?  The characters all just sort of mill around.  We’re never let in on any of the plan, except that it somehow involves someone hiding in a hotel food cart.  I had no idea what was happening…then suddenly the heist is on.  Lisa will climb up the side of the casino with a rope…very inconspicuous against the flashing Circus Circus sign, by the way.  Carol, filling in for a friend in food service, will remove Lisa and the money from the room via the food cart.  Lucky, doesn’t seem to really do anything, other than hang out with gambler Big Jake (Jesse White).  Of course, things start to go wrong with the plan…not the we know that, since the audience has never been let in on the plan.  Eversull ends up nabbing Carol who leads him back to the old west town for a final showdown with the ladies…and the mystery man.  Who could it be?

I’ve already told you what’s wrong with this movie.  For most of it’s running time, nothing happens!  Then when something does happen, the audience is confused.  A heist movie only works if we know the stakes.  We need to know how the plan works, or at least think we do.  Throw me for a loop…give me a twist or two…show me I’m not so smart after all.  But do something!  Anything!!

But all the story problems aside, the movie has a really cheap feel to it.  I felt like I was watching a 70’s made-for-tv movie  After all, there isn’t a shred of what would be considered “cinematography” on display, the music (by Alan Silvestri, of all people) is monotonous and annoying, and with TV mainstays like Jesse White and George DiCenzo on hand, it’s easy to mistake this as a small-screen production.  The occasional four letter word pops in to remind us that people actually paid money to go see this turkey.

I’m trying really hard here friends…but dang if I can’t find any redeeming qualities for this film.  If you’re a fan of movies where something actually happens…like I am, then this movie is not for you.


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