Vagina dentata is the Latin name for a vagina with teeth, a primal fear which crops up in a number of different cultures and philosophies, now emerging at the centre of this teen flick written and directed by Mitchell Lichtenstein, the son of pop artist Roy.
In a small Austin Texas town in the shadow of Simpsons-style cooling towers, high-schooler Dawn (Jess Weixler) finds her pledged commitment to virginity threatened by a number of prospective lovers. These range from sincere but repressed paramour Ryan (Hale Appleman) to her sexually active bad-boy stepbrother Brad (John Hensley), who oddly can’t remember how he lost the tip of his finger as a child.
When she discovers a set of razor-sharp teeth between her legs, Dawn’s sexual awakening proves bloodier than most, although Lichtenstein cops out by never providing a visual depiction of exactly what’s going on down there. There is, however, plenty of bloody castration stump-fountain action. While the novelty of the conceit initially provides an intriguing half hour of well-observed high-school alienation, Teeth is soon reduced to repeating the same gruesome scenes with diminishing returns.
General release from Fri 20 Jun.