Going into BB, I expected little more than some indie dross cobbled together by a no-talent hack whose abilities were far below those of a troglodyte. But writer/director C.J. Wallis, here making his feature film directorial debut, proved me wrong. Way wrong.
Leah Lamont (Jennifer Mae) needs some money to send her girlfriend, Alina (Victoria Fox), to Bucharest to visit her family. What quicker way for a woman to earn some quick cash than by working as a cam girl? Under the name Candy Cummings, Leah begins performing for lonely men stalking the Internet highways. But one man, Hal Bowman/HornyHal (Kristian Hanson), believes Candy’s attitude towards him signifies her love for him and her desire to be rescued from her life. When he loses a chance to take her on a date, he decides he’ll have to take initiative to win this girl of his dreams.
BB is a film that sneaks up on you and it does so with insane relish. What begins as little more than a generic “obsessed stalker” film slowly tightens its grip until it consumes you. Before you know it you’ve become a voyeur, the private lives of the characters unfolding before you like a corpse on a slab. And you cannot turn away.
The film’s grip is helped in large part by the performances of the two leads: Mae and Hanson. Mae shines in her role as a character going about her business entertaining men on the cam site while her private life slowly falls apart due to her girlfriend’s strange and detached behavior. She constantly checks up on her by sending texts and voice messages, both of which go unanswered. Her desperation comes to the surface as she begins drinking heavily and smoking lots of dope.
Hanson, in a wonderfully sleazy role, spares no expense in bringing an absolutely pathetic character to life and steals the show. So deplorable is his character you cannot help but root for his demise. At the same time, his character is a reflection of the alienation and social disconnect of some people on the Internet. Through his video log, he reveals how he feels inadequate due to his disfigurement, how he determines that Leah desires him above all the other men, how others have shunned him and so forth. While some of what he says hints at inherent social maladjustment, hiding out on the Internet has only made his situation worse.
Underlying all this, however, is the theme of “love as obsession and possession.” The Indian Godman Osho once said, “If you love a flower, don’t pick it up. Because if you pick it up, it dies and ceases to be what you love. So if you love a flower, let it be. Love is not about possession. Love is about appreciation.” The characters of Leah and Hal in regards to the subjects of their affections do not desire to appreciate them, but to possess them – without realizing that by possessing them, they in effect kill them.
BB is an excellent film and a breath of fresh air from a genre filled with filmmakers who seem intent on burying it beneath mounds of poppycock. Stuff like BB is what needs to see wide-release and get talked about by the masses, not Saw the 13th: Return of the Living Jigsaw Torture Porn Halloween on Elm Street, or whatever the hell they’re going to call it. Sadly, BB will probably slip under the radar of all except the most devoted of horror fans. And that, my friends, is beyond shameful.