'Dead by dawn' is not to be confused with the similarly titled 'Evil Dead 2: Dead by dawn', mainly because if you took the former and multiplied its quality by sixty billion then the latter could still kick the shit out of it. Yes, this particular Dead by Dawn is a fairly typical erotic thriller in that it features murder, shagging, acting quality usually seen in the first week of term at a drama school run for 'special' children and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed. The presence of ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed automatically makes a film an 'erotic thriller'. I once saw an awful sci-fi film about a serum that makes people invincible that starred ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed but no sex and it was STILL billed as an 'erotic thriller'.

Anyway, our tale begins, as so many do, with credits. Then we see a bunch of cars driving around as crappy 'tense' music plays and our story opens at the poolside of a wealthy Hollywood home. Instantly our visual sensors are assaulted by a barrage of BLONDE. A pair of wealthy Hollywood wives (one of whom is ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed!) sit around a table with small blonde octopi on their heads playing a game I like to call 'my life sucks more than yours' while simultaneously introducing us to the characters with some of the most obvious exposition I have ever heard. At one point the woman who is NOT ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed points out to the woman who is ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed that she has two beautiful kids. These two beautiful kids are mentioned about six hundred times but we never actually see them, possibly because the producer couldn't afford to spring the director's bail after he was jailed for trying to 'recruit' a couple from the local kindergarten.

Oh well. Immediately the husbands of this pair appear from nowhere, one of whom is FAT. I know it's only the women that need to be physically attractive in these films but, I mean, blimey. He's podgy. He has no discernible chin. Personally I think the guy was some fat friend of the producer who always sits in the corner during showbiz parties crying because no-one ever wants to sleep with him who someone took pity on. I mean, I can accept that people in Hollywood spend their days sitting by the pool talking about how much their lives suck, but a fat bloke married to ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed? That's stretching the suspension of disbelief somewhat.

Anyway, Fatty and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed decide it's time to go so they piss off and, by way of a reward to the viewer for having sat through all this, the other woman and her husband start gettin' it on in the pool. This heartwarming scene of consenting adults is intercut by images of Fatty perving on them from the house, just in case anyone thought it was safe to start masturbating. Anyway, Fatty and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed go back to their delightful home and suddenly start shagging in the kitchen. It's ... well ... ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed isn't as young as she used to be and watching Fatty's gut slither all over her ... it's just not very pleasant. At one point they start biting each other and Fatty props her up on the kitchen counter, so I could only presume he was preparing his dinner. Ha. See, that is funny because I said fat people like to eat humans.

Whosa biggy wiggy doggy woo woo? Who is?
Stills from these films are impossible to find, and would no doubt lower
the tone of this site, so here's a picture of a puppy instead.

Dry heaves finished, next we move on to fat bloke and other husband playing tennis. Interesting how people who don't seem to actually do any work can lead such glamourous playboy lifestyles, isn't it? Anyway, the two men start playing their own version of 'my life sucks more than yours' during which it becomes clear that Fatty isn't as happy with his slightly mature but nonetheless hot wife as his friend is with his young, pretty wife. I presume so anyway, I couldn't hear a word of most of their discourse 'cos the toilet was flushing in the next room, then I went downstairs to answer an e-mail, but when I came back the pair of them were sitting by the pool drinking a lot, whereupon the woman who is not ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed appears, either having forgotten her trousers or wearing a party dress that is better defined as a long t-shirt. She starts sunbathing. In a party dress. And Fatty man's friend starts making very unsubtle hints that he thinks Fatty should shag her. I know, I know, I didn't write this stupid film. Non-Fatty then lends Fatty his super-powerful car so he can get used to borrowing things his friend associates with his penis, and the next thing we know we're back at the poolside again.

This time the other woman and non-Fatty flirt clumsily, snog in front of Fatty, and now seem to be playing a new game, called 'our life kicks the shit out of yours'. Ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed appears from nowhere and they all decide to get in the pool and have a swim. Except Fatty, who says he forgot his swimsuit, but I think he was just sparing us further sight of his hideous paunch. For this I feel I must thank him. Anyway, Fatty sits in the house and broods over how much he'd like to shag his best friend's wife, then non-Fatty turns up and commences a conversation with highly homoerotic undertones. "Did you like the car?" "Yes." "I have some other ... toys ... you could play with (suggestive glance)". It gets worse, believe me. Fatty fidgets with a baseball bat, clearly debating with himself whether the world would weep for the loss of the non-Fatty if he bludgeoned him into a pile of red mush and teeth. The Fatty is adamant that he will not sleep with either non-Fatty or non-Fatty's wife, putting his gross sweaty foot down, saying "men don't just offer their wives to other men". Clearly not a veteran erotic thriller actor.

That night, non-Fatty and his wife share the stupidest lines in the film.

"You're still thinking with your dick."

"And you still love it!"

Moving on as hastily as is humanly possible, Fatty and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed are trying to shag again, but they keep forgetting to take their pants off and eventually are drawn away by one of their bratty kids demanding a glass of water. Fatty then broods some more, wondering if maybe shagging non-Fatty's wife would be fun, as there would be no bratty kids to instigate coitus interruptus. This man's life would be a whole lot less complicated if he and his wife introduced themselves to the concept known as 'motels'.

The next thing we know, non-Fatty is holding a party with all his non-Fatty friends, while Fatty sits in the middle of it all brooding some more over his sex life and wondering if he could get away with eating a few of the guests (BLARG. BLARG.), but keeps that to himself. Non-fatty wife appears pissed out of her mind and wearing a dress with a neckline so low that there are small birds and rodents building nests inside her cleavage. She passes the time of day with Fatty, then starts posing against the light while apparently engaged in rapt conversation with a doorframe. Non-Fatty takes this opportunity to try to convince Fatty to shag her again. Fatty is outwardly incensed, but then traps her in a nearby room and talks her into sucking face. She says "You're really cute." He replies with "Er, thank you." Then they start snogging. I guess alcohol regresses one back to the teenage years.

Fatty flees, fearing the wrath of ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed, but then he comes back and finds non-Fatty's wife lying face-down on the bed, stark nude, like some kind of sacrifice to the God of Cholesterol. Fatty lumbers on top of her and they start getting frisk-ay. She rides him like the fattest horse in the stable.

At this point you may be wondering precisely why this film is named 'Dead by Dawn', when perhaps a more apt title would be 'Revenge of the Sex-Crazed Blubber Monster'. Well, here comes the relevancy. Don't blink or you might miss it. Next morning, after Fatty has shot his load and gone back to his own bed, non-Fatty's wife is found DEAD! And she is found at DAWN! Somehow, we feel fulfilled. The sex scene between her and Fatty incidentally ended extremely suddenly, with no explanation of what Fatty did afterwards, so I think it would be pretty cool if it turned out that Fatty was the culprit, having crushed her to death by his enormous lardy mass. But no, this is an erotic thriller, and erotic thrillers aren't as clever as me. Turns out someone cut her throat and bashed her head in with a baseball bat after he'd left.

A pair of rough tough cops interrogate the deeply upset non-Fatty, mentioning incidentally that they found fresh semen in wifey's love pudding (Fatty is an idiot) and non-Fatty vows to protect his friend. Fatty drives someplace while brooding with more intensity than ever before (we see quick flashes of non-Fatty's wife's tits in case we've forgotten what they looked like already) and the rough tough cops play good-cop-bad-cop with non-Fatty in a cell with a bare lightbulb. Hell, they pulled out all the stops to make this original and ground-breaking, didn't they.

Next we see ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed in a domestic setting, scrubbing out some cups, and it doesn't really fit her. See, this is ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed. She's a sex kitten, she just doesn't look right scrubbing out cups. She should be wearing a black leather bodice and standing with legs perpetually spread. But anyway, Fatty does the stupidest fat thing he's ever done and tells her everything. He is very surprised when she screams at him and gets very cross. His excuse? "I didn't mean it!" Ladies and gentlemen, what we have here is the Homer Simpson of erotic thrillers. 'I didn't mean it'. Jesus. I suppose you slipped and accidentally fell onto her naked, spreadeagled body. You fat idiot.

You're a little cuddle wuddle puddle muffin!
Here's another puppy, as far removed from murder and overweight
sex fiends as possible.

The police then come for Fatty, non-Fatty having apparently let his name slip in one of the interrogations, and stupid Fatty tells all once again. Because he is stupid. They find a bloody baseball bat with his fingerprints on and arrest him. WE NEVER SEE HIM AGAIN.

Meanwhile, as tough cop gloats over how Fatty will fry like a disgusting greasy piggy, his slightly less tough cop partner has a niggling doubt. Of course, it's the eternally correct 'Cop's Hunch' which gets them into so much trouble with their superiors. Apparently non-Fatty took out a two million dollar life insurance just four months previously (SHOCK!) and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed apparently dropped off her kids with her parents then disappeared into the ether (HORROR!) though she can't have disappeared very well, 'cos we immediately see her appear in non-Fatty's house and they start getting bizzay just to confirm what everyone's already worked out. Then we see them walking together on a beach, smiling and gazing into the middle distance a lot.

"What's going to happen now?" you ask, on the edge of your seat. "Will the tough cop believe the slightly less tough cop's hunch and save Fatty from the electric chair in time? Will ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed and her evil boyfriend get their come-uppance? Will legions of pink hippos in Halloween masks descend from the sky and sing and dance to a series of popular showtunes?"


The film ends.




Let's have some ratings.

Johnny Law Rating: 7/10
There are cops, and they're tough hard-boiled ones too. But they only appear in the closing half hour of this eternally asinine film, so they lose a few points there.

Evil Lesbians Rating: 1/10
Disappointing. Ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed turns out to be evil, and at one point she is wearing a swimsuit in the general location of the other woman while she, too, wears a swimsuit, but that's about the best we have.

Vanishing Clothes Rating: 6/10
On one occasion we leap straight from Fatty and ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed being fully dressed to the pair of them rolling around in their pants, and we aren't sure what happened to the clothes the other woman was wearing before she decided to get nekkid and prostrate herself across her bed, so yeah.

Eating the Breast Rating: 4/10
A little semi-breast devouring in the pool at the beginning, but not much more. I'm surprised Fatty didn't indulge in this sport, actually, as ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed certainly has a bountiful meal on her chest.

"It's Not Porn, Honest" Rating: 7/10
In true erotic thriller style, they make us sit through endless boring tension and brooding before anyone gets bizzay, and the actual sex scenes are surprisingly restrained in terms of length.

Overall Erotic Thriller Rating: 5/10
Let down by lack of lesbians, I'm afraid. But still a typical erotic thriller. I almost included in my erotic thriller reviewing system a rating called the 'Ex-Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed Rating', in which erotic thrillers starring her received full marks, but then realised that she appears in every erotic thriller ever made.

Quality Rating: 37%

One-Word Summary: "Lard"

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