Yet in spite of such generic cross-pollination, or perhaps because of it, there aren’t as many horror-porn flicks as you might expect; certainly not in the latter part of the 20th century to the present. My suspicion is that an increasingly politically aware society simply isn’t that comfortable with unconscious fears and desires, capably displaced and suppressed in each respective genre, being exposed for all to see. Yet, for me, this nightmarish exposure of the more troubling contents of our collective unconscious is the exact reason why these particular hybrids are so compelling.
5. Hardgore aka. Horror Whore (Michael Hugo, 1974)
A young woman is sent to a sanatorium to cure her nymphomania, only to discover (by way of scalding vibrator-death, walls of blood, and levitating ejaculating rocket penises) that it’s a front for a Satanic cult. This is by no means a great film by traditional standards, but it’s a must-see for so many reasons, not the least of which is the blood-and-feathered massacre finale.
Jamie Gillis turns in an ingeniously disturbing, and darkly amusing, performance as The Enema Bandit: a peeping tom who discovers the fetish he’s been waiting for after a lucky trip to a brothel catering to special preferences. Obsessed with feminine filth, asserting that women “must be cleansed,” the Enema Bandit goes on a rape/enema rampage around New York City while two cops are hot on his trail, building to a horrifying and truly bizarre finale. Not for the feint-of-heart.
3. Dark Angels/ Dark Angels 2: Bloodline (Nic Andrews, 2000/2005)
The only relatively recent selection in this list, these two flicks definitely do not skimp on the gore like so many other PC 21st century XXX horror flicks. While a blood-lusting pair of women (Sydnee Steele and Jewel deNyle), and their complex relationship dominate Part 1, Part 2 is really where it’s at for splashing red and white, brutal decapitations, and monstrous transformations, as Barrett Blade and Evan Stone attempt to populate the world with zombie-vampires, and Sunny Lane attempts to stop them. Watch both though – they’re a double feature treat for any trash aficionado.
2. Dracula Exotica (Shaun Costello, 1980)
Jamie Gillis was born to play Count Dracula, and indeed he did in this film and one other (Dracula Sucks). It’s this dark and funny film, though, that rises to the top of the myriad Dracula porn crop, with Gore Gore Girl favourites Samantha Fox and Vanessa Del Rio rounding out a heavyweight cast. Still undead in the 20th century, Dracula is living under a self-imposed curse for raping his 19th century virgin lover, which renders him unable to climax from sex. Bored by his Transylvianian home (now a tourist attraction), sick of his vampire-twin-concubines, and drawn to a mysterious American who resembles his dead bride-to-be, he leaves his castle for the States, leading to a complex network of subplots involving FIB agents, cocaine smugglers, Romanian cultural arts, and of course love.
Catherine Burgess stars as Catherine: a wealthy and sexually disturbed housewife, obsessed with her dead father, played with usual creepy, sophisticated eroticism by Jamie Gillis. Catherine spends ample time naked and fondling herself in front of the large mirror upstairs, when a demon in the shape of her father appears, crossing into her world in a memorably horrifying and powerful scene, and gradually luring her into a sexual hell that is unsettling, beautiful, and terrifying all at once. In my book, this is the greatest hardcore horror film ever made, and perhaps the greatest hardcore film period. Through the Looking Glass is a bona fide masterpiece.