Thursday, August 22, 2019

The Hitman in LAS VEGAS LADY

Who is the unbilled performer who portrays the hitman in Bob Chinn's LAS VEGAS LADY (1981)?

Is it, as suggested by the incredible Charles Devlin on Facebook, known Las Vegas resident Ray Dennis Steckler?

...Signs point to yes.

(A tip of the hat to Charles for the discovery.  Consider this a bit of retroactive acknowledgment for being the source of this info!)

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Intimate Illusions (1978)

INTIMATE ILLUSIONS (aka BOILING POINT). 1978(?). Directed by "Paul Levis".

INTIMATE ILLUSIONS is a well-made but often misunderstood adult film shrouded in some degree of mystery. It displays a level of professionalism and ingenuity that belies the one-shot nature of its supposed director. It seems likely this is the work of a mainstream Hollywood professional working incognito who had at least some ties to the stunt field. The car chase is as impressive as the one in MARY! MARY! and might even be better. But who is the director? Gary Graver has been suggested, but I don't think it's him. There definitely seems to be a connection to MARY! MARY! at any rate, especially considering this one also has some of those wild tone shifts like it does.

The mistake many viewers (including me) have made about this film is to regard it as a narrative which eventually slides into la-la land. As it turns out, the movie is a bit more sophisticated than we have often credited it. There's actually no story at all, not really - this is a vehicle for imaginative sex scenes driven by a rotating cast of characters who drift into and out of each other's individual lives. The first character we meet, Angel (Phaedra Grant), looks for all the world like she will be at least one of the main characters, and she is indeed - but we never see her again after the first 25 minutes.

And so it goes. John Leslie is one of the top-billed stars, but disappears after his car is stolen. The other main star in the credits is "Sylvia Rodgers" who is actually the obscure performer Lisa Sue Corey. Lisa Sue is winning though, and it was seeing her scene with Jon Martin as the "Westside Rapist" (who doesn't actually rape anyone but is seduced instead) in clipped form on a tape from American Exxxtasy that led me to track this movie down. I was not disappointed.

The one part where the movie fudges its premise is that it's only a voiceover which carries one character into the finale, and I don't think she's really there. You won't mind though, because it's perhaps the greatest disco porno sequence ever filmed. No joke! There is a live band named The Filthy Four performing (while lovely ladies service them no less) and the music is great. It really captures the disco debauchery aesthetic better than I've ever seen, right down to the ridiculous camp of a dialogue scene involving a mannequin.

INTIMATE ILLUSIONS is a pretty awesome example of late 70s Golden Age of Adult Film moviemaking. It has a great poster and a catchy theme song (I assume it's named "City Girl"). I hope it is a movie which will be available in restored form in the future. It is a bona fide classic in my mind with a high rewatchability factor.

Oh, and NOTE to Desiree Cousteau fans who might get excited seeing her name on the poster so high in the cast list - Desiree is in the movie but only as an anonymous participant of the disco orgy. She doesn't have a character or dialogue. She doesn't even get any significant screen time. But she had become a "name" by the time this was released so they decided to capitalize on it.

For reference:

IMDB page

IAFD page

Monday, August 5, 2019

Mai Lin vs. Serena (1982)

"Jade, have you ever had your pussy eaten in a bar?"

Oh, where to even begin? Carlos Tobalina (his first appearance on-screen during The Great Tobalina Rewatch) is making a movie and wants the hottest girl in adult cinema as his star, but he cannot choose between Serena and Mai Lin. The two ladies take matters into their own hands by wagering the film role and salary (an improbable $25,000!) in a contest of who is the hottest girl around. And so it begins!

I'm sure Carlos was thinking of prizefights like Ali vs. Frazier in conjuring this title, but in practice, it reminds me more of those Japanese monster movies I used to watch religiously. The only real difference between this and something like GODZILLA VS. MEGALON or GODZILLA VS. THE SMOG MONSTER is the costuming of the main characters and the kind of mayhem they cause. I'm sure this is a comparison none of you were expecting.

Anyway, Mai Lin and Serena go on a wanton spree of fucking pretty much anyone they come across. Along the way, we are treated to such Tobalina standards as the sped-up scene, cop hate/humiliation, the "guy gets hit by his buddy's cumshot" gag, and of course, the bathtub/bukkake/gangbang sequence. Carlos loved his bathtubs, and I don't know if "bukkake" existed in American porn other than Tobalina films at the time. It's the antithesis of romance, but an example of how Carlos was (gulp) maybe ahead of the curve.

This movie is one of the more infamous Tobalina films because of how successful it was. It's utterly mental, too. My personal favorite sequence is the carnal cavorting in a bar, where the antics are offset by the creaking of a bar table. "Are they going to break it?" I wondered. No, but only because the guy playing the bartender (another Carlos relative/hanger-on, I believe) moves it out of the scene before they do. Between this and the hitting of heads on bar signs and chandeliers, it's clear Carlos left the blocking of his scenes to the talent as they went along. It explains so much.

Truly, this lives up to its rep as a Tobalina Anti-Classic. Watch it with someone you love. I can't guarantee they will still speak to you afterward.

For reference:

IMDB page

IAFD page

Buy direct from Vinegar Syndrome!

Saturday, August 3, 2019

The Wrestler in BIJOU

In Wakefield Poole's BIJOU, the woman at the Bijou box office is shown perusing a wrestling magazine. The magazine in question is The Wrestler (March 1972 issue), featuring Mil Máscaras on the cover. The date seems to line up with when the film would have been shot.

Buy BIJOU on DVD from Vinegar Syndrome.  You will be glad you did!