Written by Andrew Caldwell
Directed by J.M.R. Luna
Tommy K...Alvaro Orlando
Four friends head to Las Vegas for a balls-out birthday weekend, which includes booze, drugs, gambling, and of course a prerequisite visit to a whore house. For a hefty price, they can not only get their rocks off but also their organs out--ripped out of their bodies, that is. Ye Olde Cat House is actually a front for a black market organ harvesting ring, and these partygoers are next on the operating table.
The characters here are your usual assortment of annoying stock douchebags, who only get more annoying the drunker they get. Birthday boy Graham (I swear his name is Graham, though there is no character named Graham listed at the IMDB page) is the burned out stoner; his brother Luke is the sensitive, lovelorn type (who looks a lot like Adam Levine, in my opinion); Tommy K. is the pretty boy player who refers to himself almost solely as Tommy K; and Cameron is the spoiled rich kid who records all of the debauchery on tape.
Yep, this is a found footage film--at least, mostly. The first two-thirds of the film is comprised solely of Cameron's camera, but the final third of the movie introduces quick shots of grainy surveillance footage before taking a sudden left-turn into conventional cinema. This shift in cinematography was an odd choice, but at least it spared us from having to ask "Why are they still filming everything!?" Then it shifts again to show alternate footage of scenes we've already been through as well as new ones, taken from another camera. Stripped deviates from the norm in this respect, and even when it doesn't work, at least it's offering up something different.
As with most films of this ilk, there's a lot of on-camera bickering and episodic acts of randomness before the story gets moving--what passes as character development. This would be fine if the characters weren't so annoying, but in this instance, the less time I spend with them the better.
Basically this felt as if one of the Hostel flicks had been a segment in V/H/S, so how you feel about those films will probably determine how you feel about this one. I was entertained even when annoyed, but not to the point where I will probably watch it again.
Special thanks to Inception Media Group for the screener!