Halfway between rural roadshow "hicksploitation" and an Andy Warhol art film
This movie is alternately called "The Tender Grass" or "Jennie Wife/Child". While the first title is just strange, the second seems to connect it to the old rural roadshow "hicksploitation" movies like "Child Bride" and "Poor White Trash" where horny, slobbering hillbillies try to marry twelve-year-old girls. The female lead here though is actually twenty (and played by an actress who looks even older than that), so this is really more of a conventional sexploitation potboiler about a younger woman who is married to a much older dirt farmer, but lusts after his hunky but dimwitted farmhand (who is himself rooting around with the town tart).
Although the acting is not too great, all the roles are played fairly straight, but the goofy intertitles and even goofier songs suggest that the filmmakers themselves weren't taking this thing entirely seriously. It isn't ever exactly laugh-out-loud funny, but it seems to have the kind of wry, self-conscious irony of an Andy Warhol film. However, the great black-and-white cinematography by renowned Hungarian cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond is well above the level of either a typical roadshow flick OR a "Warhol factory" art film.
As a sexploitation flick it's pretty tame for 1968, not showing much more than one of the old roadshow films of the 40's--i.e. longshots of the cute little backside of the heroine as she skinny-dips in the local "waterin' hole" to the catchy tune of a song called "My Birtday Suit" (but at least she isn't twelve years old like the girl in "Child Bride"). I'm basically a sucker for any of these rural "hicksploitation" flicks, but I'd especially recommend this one for the incredible cinematography and because it's just so damn weird.
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