Kiki & Herb On The Rocks

A drag-camp cabaret duo that started in San Francisco and went on to conquer New York City, Kiki & Herb constitutes a great act that doesn't quite get the film showcasing it deserves in "On the Rocks." Barely feature-length quasi-docu follows Justin Bond and Kenny Mellman's alter egos on a booze-soaked, disaster-strewn trip to London.

With:
With: Justin Bond, Kenny Mellman.

A drag-camp cabaret duo that started in San Francisco and went on to conquer New York City (even playing Carnegie Hall), Kiki & Herb constitutes a great act that doesn’t quite get the film showcasing it deserves in “On the Rocks.” Barely feature-length quasi-docu follows Justin Bond and Kenny Mellman’s alter egos on a booze-soaked, disaster-strewn trip to London, focusing on so-so “behind the scenes” mock-doc footage rather than on-stage sequences. Prospects look limited to gay fests and DVD sales to duo’s fans.

Bond’s Kiki DuRane is a gravel-voiced chanteuse of indeterminate age whose Phyllis Diller laugh and fuchsia pantsuit suggest time froze circa 1973 in a Holiday Inn lounge. Twitchy Herb looks in need of medication whenever he’s not furiously pounding the ivories. Already gassed on airline cocktails, they hit the ground grousing at the venue booked, their accommodations, and even local sights. This is all amusing enough — if sometimes barely–but perhaps due to the prohibitive expense of music rights to songs in their hilarious-cum-harrowing repertoire (ranging from Rogers & Hammerstein to Eminem), feature contains disappointingly few (and brief) stage excerpts. Package is bare-bones.

Kiki & Herb On The Rocks

Production: A Jackal Pictures production. Produced by Giuseppe Gallo. Directed by Mike Nicholls.

Crew: Camera (color, mini DV), Nigel Askew, Giuseppe Gallo, Cornelia Hecht, Dick Jewell, Oliver Manzi; editor, Herbert Hunger. Reviewed at San Francisco Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, June 22, 2005. Running time: 65 MIN.

With: With: Justin Bond, Kenny Mellman.

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