Monday, September 10, 2012

Mirror Images II (1993) - Shannon Whirry at her Sexy Best!

"Mirror Images 2" is Good, Sleazy, Hot Fun

Box cover Mirror Images II 1993
"Mirror Images II" (1993).

Shannon Whirry had a whirlwind career in Hollywood. After doing the usual waitress gig and studying acting, in the early 1990s she suddenly started getting major gigs. Her breakthrough role was the 1992 erotic thriller "Animal Instincts," directed by Gregory Dark of adult film fame (the Dark Brothers). That led to a number of other collaborations between the two (with Dark sometimes working under various pseudonyms), one of which was "Mirror Images II" (1993).

Shannon Whirry Kristine Kelly Mirror Images II 1993
You see Doctor, my problem is... my, what nice eyes you have.

Why did Shannon Whirry become Greg Dark's muse, you may well ask? Well, look at her! That was a time when cable was burgeoning in popularity, and the multiplying channels were hungry for sexy product to fill late-night air time. Hard-core adult film starlets were still considered unusable, so producers turned to "innocent" novice actresses such as Shannon, Misty Mundae, Shannon Tweed, Julie Strain, Krista Allen, Rochelle Swanson, Delia Sheppard, Julian Wells and even Carmen Electra, Madonna and Pamela Anderson.

Sex scene Mirror Images II 1993
"Mirror Images II" is very romantic.

They all became soft-core adult film starlets to one degree or another. Shannon was one of the most successful, starring in a string of sexy thrillers. It didn't hurt that she reportedly was married to Dark, a veteran hardcore director (this marriage, though, if it did occur, does not appear in their official bios). Of course, that raises all sorts of questions about how "innocent" Shannon was, but she never (to my knowledge) did actual hardcore (not that she wasn't asked). Anyway, this part of the story is very murky.

Sara Suzanne Brown Mirror Images II 1993
Sara Suzanne Brown in a hot scene with Luca in "Mirror Images II."

It's a cruel world, and eventually Shannon's string ran out. She aged a bit, and producers/cable TV execs/those watching decided it was all right for actual adult film actresses to play sexy parts. Shannon lost her starring roles along with many others. After a few years struggling to live on bit parts on various Television series (including "Seinfeld") and bit movie parts, she gave up. Upon turning 40, Shannon left Hollywood for good. Don't worry, though, she still does occasional theater work in, I believe, Arizona, and now and then gets a bit part in B-movies.

Shannon kissing Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon and her housekeeper's boyfriend, out in the pool in "Mirror Images II."

Egads! I've barely even mentioned the film I'm reviewing, "Mirror Images II" (1993), directed by Gregory Dark for Academy Entertainment, for a very good reason. The only reason to watch "Mirror Images II" is to see Shannon in all her glory playing twins Carrie and Terrie. Otherwise, "Mirror Images II" is typical of the genre, with average directing, average lighting, average costumes and average so on and so forth. It's a very average production, representative of the genre - aside from Shannon.

Shannon Whirry signed photo
Signed photo by Shannon Whirry from her role as Velda in "Mike Hammer."

The acting, with only a couple of exceptions, is that of a decent college production, and the entire cast - bar none - looks as if it roughly the same age, with 30 as the median. There are no children, no teens, no Seniors, no middle-aged matriarchs, nothing like that. Every single person, naturally, is in the prime of his or her sexual life, well beyond the age of consent, and experienced in the ways of life.

Shannon Whirry Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon is great at looking perplexed, then taking her clothes off anyway in "Mirror Images II."

There was indeed a "Mirror Images I," but Shannon was not in it. Delia Sheppard and Julie Strain took care of that one. The only relation that one has to this one is that it involves an actress playing twins. The producer of "Mirror Images II," Andrew Garroni, did a string of these types of films in the '90s, then pretty much disappeared - like Shannon. Hmmmmmm. Probably their best film together was "Animal Instincts II" (1994). But, "Mirror Images II" has some delectable scenes of its own. My favorite is at the very beginning, when the "bad" sister seduces the "good" sister's boyfriend, then they are discovered humpus interruptus by the good sister. Uh oh!

Caressing Shannon's foot Mirror Images II 1993
There is a lot of affection in "Mirror Images II."

All right, sorry, I know I keep getting off-track, but the story behind these films is better than the films themselves. Anyway, this one features the old standard plot of a "good" twin and a "bad" twin. Why one is good and the other bad (there wouldn't be much of a story if they were both good, now would there?) eventually is explained, but you won't care and the explanation really doesn't make much sense anyway. Unfortunately for us, the dim plot first keeps the twins separated, but eventually they cross paths again and even start acting alike, to the extent of impersonating each other. No, they do not get it on together - now that would be a real trick, right? But it would have busted the budget to figure out how to pull that off.

Shannon Whirry Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon looking in the mirror, which isn't really a big theme in the film at all despite it being called "Mirror Images II."

The storyline of "Mirror Images II" is increasingly difficult to follow because it becomes unclear whether the "bad" one is having sex with the "good" one's man and so on. Is that the good one, or the bad one playing the good one? Carrie, or Terrie? Hard to tell unless you are really focusing, and the only cue usually is what they are wearing... but they aren't usually wearing very much. I tried to pay attention, but still was baffled at several points. Who knows, that ambiguity may have been intended, but it was not good confusion. Rather, it was the "who the heck is that supposed to be?" type. But - and here is the key to whether you will like this film or not - whether it is the good OR the bad one, it is still Shannon in the scene. Dig? So, really, who cares, you don't watch one of these romps for the plot.

Luca Bercovici Mirror Images II 1993
Luca Bercovici plays a "sleazy cop" in "Mirror Images II."

There are about half a dozen sex scenes, and they start off the film with a bang. There is nothing explicit in the adult film sense, but you pretty much get a good view of Shannon and her female co-stars (Sara Suzanne Brown plays a prostitute - that is how she is listed in the credits, "Prostitute" - who calls people "Sugar," while Kristine Kelly has a truly awful role as a very naughty shrink and actress P.J. Sparxx has an uncredited role doing a very tame girl-girl with Shannon). Of the male stars, Luca Bercovici delivers the best performance in the film as Clete Dyker (great name!). Tom Reilly is a private eye, and Ken Steadman mumbles his way through some very undemanding scenes. The men all show their butts and that's about it, mercifully.

Shannon Whirry on top Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon Whirry in "Mirror Images II."

There is one curiosity, which is often the case with these kinds of forgotten sleazy pictures. Eva La Rue, who later became famous on "All My Children" and "CSI: Miami," is around very briefly as "Phyllis." Unfortunately, Eva has no sexy scenes at all, but she is very perky. She had been kicking around for several years at that point, but chose to stay legit rather than follow Shannon's path. Obviously, their careers turned out differently. We all make our choices in life....

Luca Bercovici Mirror Images II 1993
Luca Bercovici looks worried a lot in "Mirror Images II," and he should.

These types of movies haven't changed much at all since the early '90s. It is one of the few constants in life, sexy late-night films that don't cross that line.

Shannon Whirry Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon Whirry in a nice gown in "Mirror Images II."

Of course, that line is in different places for different people, but this film adheres strictly to the rules of the genre: no frontal male nudity, no penetration, all humping covered by clothing, one foot always on the floor....

Shannon Whirry at home Mirror Images II 1993
Shannon Whirry is just like an ordinary housewife - well, maybe one in the Valley - in "Mirror Images II."

Despite all the sex, Shannon can look very innocent and lady-like...

Shannon Whirry topless in bed Mirror Images II 1993
This is the bad Shannon in "Mirror Images II," and she's been very bad, which is quite good, and she's not ashamed about it at all.

... but she also can look sexy...

Shannon Whirry mouth open Mirror Images II 1993
Don't choke!  I'll save you!

... and, when called on, she can look deadly. What more could you ask for? Really, that's the film. If you like the soft-core genre that shows up on late-night cable TV, this is a perfectly fine choice for an evening's entertainment. This film, incidentally, has nothing to do with a 2013 project of the same name on Youtube starring Heather Marie of "Weeds," so if you were looking for information on that... keep looking.


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