Strangers in Paradox

Outlaw lesbian murderers and the insane transsexual who dreams of them

Shocktoberfest!! director Russell Blackwood gives a nicely ghoulish, Grand Guignoltreatment to this otherwise tedious post-Tarantino farce by Kate Bornstein. Strangers in Paradox tells the story of a transsexual named Angel moldering in an asylum who can magically dream or remember murders that happen outside her cell. Angel dreams about a violent pair of outlaw lesbians named Casey and the Kidd. The "Dyke-namic Duo" seduce unsuspecting men and haul them into their lair, or cave, or whatever it is, in order to torture and misuse and kill them in some horrible sexual way. Casey is a sadistic dyke in a modified leatherette motorcycle suit, very butch, who reads tarot cards to paying customers over the telephone. The Kidd is her femme girlfriend in a long, blond wig and candy-striped tights. Their adventures are told not only through Angel's memory but also through live feeds on a TV show, so disembodied voices sometimes squawk orders from an unseen control room. Even if you like this kind of tacky theater, the story of Casey and the Kidd comes off as a play that twisted 9-year-olds might improvise for their baby sitter after drinking too much Everclear. "I thought you were a voice in my head," says Angel at one point in the show. "No," says the Kidd. "Other way." Aha. From mind-blowing to boring is but a step.

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