with Sarah Michelle Gellar as Karen Rose

This is Sarah Michelle Gellar's film debut (disregarding two uncredited previous appearances).

Director:     Amos Kolleck
Producer:     Amos Kolleck
Screenplay:     Amos Kolleck
Co-starring:     Sally Kirkland, Kathy Bates
US Release Date:     October 1989
Length:     102 minutes
Genre:     Thriller
Printed film format:     35mm
Sound mix:     mono
Original Music:     Mira J. Spektor

A New York hooker (Kirlkand) tries to keep her daughter (Gellar) away from the clutches of the Mob. They are befriended by a yuppie stockbroker, who then finds himself a great deal more committed to helping them than he originally intended. A very good film. Were cars really that big in 1989?

The film also went by the title of Melanie Rose. In Germany and Hungary, the title was DEATH STRIP.

Director Amos Kollek is the son of former Mayor of Jerusalem Teddy Kollek. New York City prostitutes are a common element in Kollek's films, including his latest effort, the 90 minute documentary CHRONICLING A CRISIS, which was released in 2011. In that film, "a NY prostitute who Amos meets on his quest to fund his next film. Both struggle with their highs and lows trying to find some harmony to help them proceed to the future."

On the soundtrack:


Gellar's first scene in a motion picture Sarah Michelle Gellar riding in mom's car in High Stakes Sarah Michelle Gellar feeding pigeons in High Stakes
Sarah Michelle Gellar looking worried in High Stakes Sarah Michelle Gellar wearing scottie dog shirt in High Stakes Sarah Michelle Gellar reacting to burned dinner in High Stakes


Sarah Michelle Gellar - Karen Rose
Sally Kirkland - Melanie Rose
Kathy Bates - Jill
Larry Block - Harvey
Eddie Earl Hatch - Earl
Robert LuPone - John Stratton
Maia Danziger - Veronica
Betty Miller - Mother
June Stein - Betty
Rose Parra - Tina
W.T. Martin - Bob
Richard Lynch - Slim
Joe Cirillo - Waiter
Jesse Corti - Super
Edward Black - Bouncer
William Kennedy - Man in back room
Samantha Louca - Receptionist
Owen Lund - Customer
Michael Steinhardt - Good Time Man
Maggie Wagner - Woman in Bar

VHS Cover