Impact Point


by Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Kelly Reyes is a minor star on the women's beach volleyball circuit. She's devoted all of her waking hours to volleyball, and she possesses the talent to be a tournament winner, but a more experienced team dominates every championship and stands in Kelly's way. Just as Kelly is wondering if she should abandon her dreams of glory, two major developments thrust her into the limelight. First, one of the girls on the more experienced team dies in an accident, and Kelly is the chosen replacement. Second, a major sports reporter decides to write about the new team, and he wants to focus his story on Kelly rather than her storied partner.

There are a few bumps on her road to glory. After she and the reporter take their relationship to a deeper level, the police show up on the beach the next morning to question her. The police think that the death of the other volleyball star might have been a homicide, and the only one who seems to have benefited from the death is Kelly. As they check out her alibis and explanations, they are flabbergasted by her claims to have spent time with a reporter who disappeared some time earlier, and is presumed dead.

Impact Point is a by-the-numbers stalker film which was made for the video market. In order to maintain some dramatic tension, the story relies almost exclusively on plot twists involving the identity of the man who claims to be the missing reporter. In the hands of a slick director working with a deft script, that might have made a nice little grade-B mystery, but most of the plot twists are spoiled by heavy-handedness. It might have been different. For example, if the script had cut out the sequence in which the reporter interviews, then seduces Kelly, the film would have taken on many additional layers of mystery. In that case, we in the audience would wonder if Kelly herself had killed the other volleyball player, and we would wonder along with the detectives whether she had completely fabricated the supposed interview without knowing that the reporter was missing. None of that tension was allowed to develop. Since we see Kelly being interviewed and seduced by the man who is using the reporter's name, it is immediately apparent that the imposter must have known that the real reporter was dead. Since that is a secret known only to the police, the imposter must therefore have killed the reporter and assumed his identity in order to get close to Kelly. Knowing that, we also have to assume that the imposter also killed the other volleyball player because of his obsession with Kelly.

The completely obvious nature of the mystery doesn't doom the film to complete failure. There are still matters to resolve - who the imposter really is, how he can track Kelly's every move, and whether he can get to Kelly at the specific time and place he has chosen to murder her (the major volleyball championship). Of course, there's also the matter of whether Kelly can pull herself together enough to win the big match knowing that there is a killer somewhere on the premises.

If all that sounds sort of tired, well, that's because it is. It's a hackneyed sports movie nested inside a predictable stalker film. I would not call it a poor film, but rather just a workmanlike, ordinary effort. The director did get some pretty good mileage out of a $2 million budget, and she elicited some pretty good performances out of a C-list cast, so it's not the kind of film that will make you seek out gypsies to place a curse on everyone involved in its creation. It's the kind that may be barely interesting enough to get you to stick it out without the fast forward button on DVD, or without changing the channel if you catch it on cable, but will later provoke some introspection when you wonder why exactly you did that.



* widescreen







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Straight to video


The woman who plays Kelly (Melissa Keller) has a very nice smile, a nice figure, and delivers a competent performance. Unfortunately, all of the nudity is restricted to two shower scenes shot from the rear, and even her pretty butt is somewhat spoiled by the fact that many of the shots involve grainy footage on a video camera planted in her apartment. Oh, well. There is a very brief look at her breasts from the side, but that's a grainy-cam shot. There is no clear look at her breasts, and no lower frontal action.



Our Grade:

If you are not familiar with our grading system, you need to read the explanation, because the grading is not linear. For example, by our definition, a C is solid and a C+ is a VERY good movie. There are very few Bs and As. Based on our descriptive system, this film is a: