'A Dirty Little Businness' (known as Merchants Of Venus in some countries) is barely known in the UK. Filmed in 1998, and released on DVD four years later. The film is a low budget romantic comedy written by Len Richmond who also wrote the award-winning sitcom 'Agony'. Filmed in Los Angeles, the impressive cast has Michael York and former Bond girl and Sweeney bird Prunella Gee (who is still a looker even in her late 40s) as the leads, and wonderful supporting characters played by Beverly D' Angelo and Brian Cox. The movie also has a good soundtrack with a song called 'Love Affair' by '80s pop sensation Erasure.
The story is an unusual one, Russian immigrant Alex (York) comes to Los Angeles with big ideas, only to land a job in a sex toy factory. The boss, Eppy (played by a wonderful actress called Nancy Fish who steals many of the scenes) mothers Alex and tries to set him up with a friend of her's, has-been adult movie star Catherine (Gee). Cynical Catherine doesn't believe in true love and Alex tries hard to make her change her mind. A sweet love affair begins and York and Gee definitely have chemistry.
The main problem with this film (and why I only rate it three stars) is that it tries to deal with too much too quickly, all of the subjects that it tries to tackle can not be done in only 74 minutes. I think it could have been done better had it been given it more time and attention. The ending is rather disappointing and parts of the film leave holes behind it. Had parts not been so rather hastily thrown together, this could have actually been a great film.
In parts, the film is very funny, and there are also good performances all around. Like most low budget straight-to-DVD movies, at the price that it is usually sold for, you can't go wrong really.