On this week’s episode of the Really Awful Movies podcast, a bit of a departure: modern exploitation. Ya’ll wanna hear a story?
It’s hard to categorize Zola, a 2020 American black comedy crime film directed by Janicza Bravo and written by Bravo and Jeremy O. Harris. It is based on a strange idea that absolutely, positively should not work: a viral Twitter thread from 2015 by Aziah “Zola” King and the resulting Rolling Stone article “Zola Tells All: The Real Story Behind the Greatest Stripper Saga Ever Tweeted” by David Kushner.
Zola stars Taylour Paige as Zola, a part-time stripper who works at a Hooters restaurant, who is convinced by her new friend (Riley Keough) to travel to Tampa, Florida, in order to earn quick and easy money, only to get in over her head. That’s the premise to something pretty enticing.