An American businessman visits London and is horrified to discover his nubile teenage daughter has become involved with a gang of thuggish "beatniks". Her involvement leads to wild parties, sex, death and necrophilia.
Murderous, sadistic London gang leader Vic Dakin, a mother-obsessed homosexual modeled on real-life gangster Ronnie Kray, is worried about potential stool pigeons that may bring down his ... See full summary »
Not a Pornographic Film but a Swinging Sixties Film Set in London
This is a low budget black and white film which is a real archaeological curiosity from the social history point of view. It is a completely accurate portrayal of part of what was going on in London back then. The girls' clothes, makeup, and hair are absolutely perfect, for the simple reason that this film was made while it was all still happening, and that's what those girls looked like when they were at home, and not just on the film set. In order to try to make this little 'slice of life' film, with its slender story, appeal to the public, it was given a sensational title and tag line. But the film is really just about a group of silly girls aged about 20 who are sharing two floors of a house called Tudor Court in Lexham Gardens, W8, on the borderline of Kensington with Earls Court. In the film there is conspicuously little traffic on the roads, with no parking meters or restrictions, which is what life was like then, when everyone was as free as a bird to do what he or she liked, and the police state, surveillance, monitoring, and paranoid control by 'authority' had not yet come into being. The main character is a girl of about 20 played by a young doe-eyed Francesca Annis. She leaves home to go up to London and attend modelling school (which is what a lot of feather-headed girls of good family did in those days) and move into a flat with girlfriends and also the gay brother of one of them. The film is interesting as far as it goes, but the trouble is that none of the characters is interested in anything or does anything, except for one. That one is played by the young Klaus Kinski, and he is a youthful slum landlord who spends his spare time gambling in casinos, while his girlfriend shares a flat with Annis. Kinski gets savagely beaten up by competing thugs, but that is just a subplot. No one in the film gives a moment's thought to anything other than sex, gambling, and the mating game. Hence the 'pleasure girls'. The total vacuity of the characters in this film is most alarming. When people are that empty-headed it hardly matters which ones are the nice ones and which ones are the horrid ones, as none of them has any merit anyway. A great deal is made in the film of one young man who is a compulsive gambler who forces one of the girls in the shared flat to give him her only valuable possession, an heirloom piece of jewellery. He then takes it and sells it and gambles away all the money that same evening. But if the girl is that stupid, why is she any better than the man who is that unscrupulous and callous? The fact is that none of the characters is of any interest whatever. Ian McShane plays the boy Annis falls for. But in terms of the story and the people, who cares. The only interest this film has now, which it did not have originally, is its accuracy in recording precisely what those kind of girls were like then in those kind of flats doing those kind of silly things. And how I hated the beehive and bouffant hairdos then! But at the time the weird eye makeup of the period appeared perfectly normal and did not look strange, because all the girls were wearing it and there was no one to compare them with. How uncritically one accepts most of the styles and fashions of every period in which one lives! Apart from those hairdos, the other thing I hated most came in some time later, and that was men's bell bottom trousers. To think what one has to endure just because 'everybody is doing it'! Even if you refuse to wear them yourself you have to watch all the other people wearing them, and that can be torture, when they are ugly and offensive to the eye. I objected to every pair of bell bottom trousers I ever saw, but my hatred of them never made them go away, so it was wasted. And as for those terrible hairdos, the girls were utterly impervious to fact that they were hideous. All that preening in front of mirrors looking lovingly at their own hairdos which were the apotheosis of ugliness! How uncritical is the human eye! This film was a bizarre trip down a small corner of memory lane which, although interesting, was a sad and sobering experience. Were so many of the girls one knew in the 1960s really that boring and stupid? The answer is, alas, probably yes.
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