Riffraff | Chicago Reader

Riffraff

The Gene Siskel Film Center's monthly gazette compares this locally shot ensemble drama to David Mamet's Sexual Perversity in Chicago, a more flattering reference than the more apparent Baywatch. The characters are coed lifeguards at North Avenue Beach, and when they're not casually boffing one another, they're killing time at work by debating bedroom politics and critiquing each other's sexual track records. As in the Mamet play, the story turns on an ostensible romantic (Ben Wells), a cynical cocksman (Robert Belushi, Jim's son), and their opposite numbers (Katie O'Hagan and Chryssie Whitehead, a standout in Every Little Step). Writer-director Justen Naughton credibly evokes the lifeguards' body-worshipping subculture, and the cast is solid—especially Belushi, playing a modern-day equivalent of his father's role in Sexual Perversity.

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