Projections - Movie Reviews

Double Dare


Rated: Not Rated
Reviewed by: Jim  
Release date: May 6, 2005 Released by: Balcony Releasing

There's no double standard against women being movie stunt doubles in the well-made documentary Double Dare soon reaching the ancillary market.

At the start, a woman is shown in a blaze shot through the air. This is a day's work for twentysomething Zoe Bell, who hails from New Zealand. Filmmaker Amanda Micheli takes an in-depth look at this newcomer and another veteran stunt double, Jeannie Epper.

This perilous occupation has put Bell in "Xena: Warrior Princess", noted for being the stunt double of Lucy Lawless. Epper is now in her early 60's, a grandmother, famous for being Lynda Carter's stand-in on "Wonder Woman".

Bell is confronted with the prospect that the Xena series is about to come to an end, and she'll have to probably look for work outside her native land. Epper is part of a family, many of which had stunt careers and she's been in many pictures, including Romancing the Stone.

Micheli nicely contrasts their personal and professional lives even if she fails to give greater perspective of the business as it has related to them and where it is headed. Still, it cogently relates the difficulties of succeeding in something that is male-dominated.

Old stunts and recent productions indicate how dedicated these ladies are and both come across as charming given all the hardship and pain in the footage. In a profession where one hopes to minimize their injuries, it is nice to see someone like Bell get the opportunity to impress Quentin Tarantino and be Uma Thurman's stunt double - wearing the yellow jump suit - in Kill Bill. The need to see women with as little clothing on as possible, ironically, has helped the occupation blossom with less protection than most men use.

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Double Dare       B-       B-

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