This was the first movie in which a mainstream actress (Jayne Mansfield) appeared nude. (Actually, the movie showed her only topless, but a photo in Kenneth Anger's book "Hollywood Babylon II" shows Mansfield on the set completely nude.) It reportedly took some imbibing of champagne on Mansfield's part to get her to take off her clothes. See more »
Jayne Mansfield generated some of the most heated publicity of her career (and that's saying a lot!) when she agreed to film nude scenes for the 1963 comedy, "Promises! Promises!" No American star of her magnitude had ever appeared undraped onscreen before, and the controversy led to the picture being banned, court hearings on obscenity, and Mansfield stoically bearing the bad press (and no doubt saving all the headline clippings). Watching the film is a sad, strange experience; the nude scenes have nothing to do with the plot, and were clearly filmed solely for sensation's sake. What it shows is a star badly on the wane, appearing in an extremely low budget production, and selling her body cheap for the resultant publicity. Jayne's two nude scenes come fairly early in the film, which means there's plenty of time left for highly strained, largely unfunny, mostly sex-less antics. The crux of the plot involves two married couples, Jayne/Tommy Noonan and Marie McDonald/Mickey Hargitay, on a cruise together. In a rather lewd plot device, both women end up pregnant, and because of some drunken revelry between the couples (never seen), no one is sure who the father is for which baby. One surreal scene has Jayne attending a shipboard party where female impersonator T.C. Jones does celebrity imitations, one of whom is Jayne Mansfield! In character as "Sandy," Jayne squeals with delight and does HER "imitation" of Jayne Mansfield. Unfortunately, it's the funniest moment in the film. On the brighter side, Jayne looks especially lovely and voluptuous, and, playing it relatively straight for once, doesn't rely too much on high-pitched ooohs and aahhhs. Micky Hargitay (Jayne's real-life husband) looks much too young to be marruied to former 40's pinup girl Marie McDonald, but displays a rather sweet, doltish charm as a Hungarian actor striving to lose his pronounced accent (it must've been a real stretch for him). For the die-hard Jayne Mansfield fan, this is basically a harmless, actionless, sexless sex comedy, and a chance to see the star rather perfunctorily topless. For everyone else, it's a historic curiosity, and nothing more.
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