Hi folks! Another round of quickies for y'all as I finish up some reading, writing, and reviewing. I haven't had much time for anything recently, even for movies, so these flicks are really all I've been able to see for the last few weeks. Sad, I know. Roll on Summer.
800 Fantasy Lane (Svetlana, 1980)
Yikes. Well, I didn't think I could go wrong with a Svetlana movie starring Jamie Gillis, but this is one of the most nauseating viewing experiences in recent memory. The editing is so off kilter that I assumed these Wildside people had chopped the film up and put it back together. Alas, I am told by a friend that this is essentially the same cut as the one available on U.S. dvd (the fisting scene is cut). The plot is thin, involving Jamie Gillis and his buddy posing as rich oil men wanting to purchase real estate from a new company run by hot actresses. Naturally, these women offer extra services to seal the deal, and these shysters are ready to take advantage. Many surreal and trippy scenes occur, including one I had seen before in Forbidden Worlds (a collection of scenes from other movies), wherein Jamie is a lion tamer and the gals are done up in impressive animal body paint. I found this scene bizarre and engaging when in isolation of the rest of the movie, but back in its context (showing up at the end) I found it as irritating as the rest of the film. Irritating in its real sense -- as in, this film was an irritant. To my eyes, my ears, and my stomach.
Odyssey: The Ultimate Trip (Gerard Damiano, 1977)
This is a film of three parts, sort of a vignette flick but more like three individual segments -- short films -- each focused on sexual dysfunction and the trippy solutions to said problems. I enjoyed this film, but ironically it's the quality of the different segments (especially the first one, featuring R. Bolla and some clever dialogue ably assisted by convincing delivery) that threaten to undo the film. I found myself wanting the first segment to continue, which is a compliment really. Nevertheless, it was ultimately unsatisfying as a result. Still, recommended.
Co-Ed Fever (Robert McCallum, 1980)
This one is just ok. It's not terrible, but it's pretty light. Annette Haven leads a sorority who are promised a magazine layout if they exclusively date men from a neighbouring fraternity and end their relationships with their current ragtag group of guys, including Jamie Gillis, John Leslie, and Jon Martin (who stands out as an ubernerd). The guys (and one gal, Samantha Fox) decide to plot a sabotage. Everyone does a fine job in their roles, and it seems as though this particular storyline would have been made many times over by Hollywood. However, ultimately the film isn't particularly engaging and it's not wholly satisfying. There are many more McCallum flicks that wowed me in ways that this title didn't nearly approach. I did enjoy watching John Leslie throw a potted plant in a swimming pool though. And the film looks pretty. I'd like to know what the source is for Wildside's releases -- everything I've seen so far looks and sounds great.
The Budding of Brie (Henri Pachard, 1980)
This film impressed me. It's essentially identical in plot and characterization to All About Eve, but references several classic Hollywood films which makes it a joyous viewing experience for film buffs. In addition, the way it adapts All About Eve into a modern porn industry setting is complex and clever. The dialogue is engaging, and the actors pull off their lines well. Hillary Summers as Brie is notably excellent -- perfectly cast. Almost too perfectly cast, in fact, as her performance as parasitic and innocent/creepy Brie threatens to overwhelm any frivolous enjoyment of the film. This is of course a wonderful thing for those who, like me, enjoy adult films that take risks.
The Bombshells 2 (William H., 2011)
I'll admit I watched this selectively, and skipped scenes that involved performers I'm not keen on. I won't bother naming names, other than those I have something positive to say about. Basically, this flick gets a thumbs up from me due to one scene. The first scene, in fact, featuring Sophia Santi and Manuel Ferrara. I found this scene so engaging, I watched it twice over in one go, and then after perusing the other scenes watched it again. The other scenes were pretty good, but I suspect you would have to be a fan of the particular performers, and there are some men and women in this release who I just can't roll with due to what I perceive to be overacting. I'll leave it at that.