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The Toy Box (1971)

 -  Horror | Sci-Fi  -  August 1971 (USA)
4.9
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Ratings: 4.9/10 from 284 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 14 critic

When Ralph persuades his girlfriend, Donna, to participate in a bizarre party, she discovers the guests are to perform erotic plays in the presence of a corpse - Ralph's millionaire uncle. ... See full summary »

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(as Ron Garcia)
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Title: The Toy Box (1971)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ralph (as Evan Steele)
Ann Perry ...
Donna (as Ann Myers)
Neal Bishop
Debbie Osborne ...
Sally Howard (as Deborah Osborne)
T.E. Brown
Lisa Goodman
Kathy Hilton ...
Party Guest in Cotton Dress (as Kathie Hilton)
Maria Arnold ...
Maria (as Marie Arnold)
Jack King ...
Uncle
Marsha Jordan ...
Party Guest in Orange
Steve Moon
Casey Larrain ...
Party Guest in Boots
Ralph Dale
Nancy Freese
Karen Hutt
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Storyline

When Ralph persuades his girlfriend, Donna, to participate in a bizarre party, she discovers the guests are to perform erotic plays in the presence of a corpse - Ralph's millionaire uncle. The players are promised gifts from the "toy box." Ralph and Donna await their turn, when the mansion's doors lock at midnight; and it's not long before they discover the players are being murdered by...the dead uncle? Written by M. Gumen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Pandora's Box of Freudian Depravity. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

August 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Orgy Box  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)
See  »
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Connections

Features Machismo: 40 Graves for 40 Guns (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A bizarre sexploitation horror film?
5 April 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Without a doubt, this is probably the strangest and most bizarre sexploitation film I've ever seen. And given the amount of them that I've watched, that's truly saying something.

The plot revolves around a swingers party, where the guests act out sexually perverse scenarios for a man called "Uncle" to obtain gifts from a mysterious "toy box." But when a couple of the guests suspect all is not as it seems, including the identity of "Uncle," we go from a very commonplace sexploitation piece and veer off into an insanely wild and absurd story involving aliens and humans sold as drugs.

This film isn't so much shocking, as it is it off-the-wall kooky. For the first 45 minutes, I had little idea what I was watching. It isn't until the end of the second act that the pieces of this oddball story start to fall into place. The film does live up to it's perverse billing, though, as you see plenty of weird sexual antics, not the least of which is faux necrophilia, faux cannibalism, and the first (and only, I believe) display of a woman molested by a bed. Yes, you heard right, she is sexually pleasured by an actual bed. The murders, such as they happen, are mostly off-screen implied than shown. And when you get the big revelation of who "Uncle" really is, as well as what this party is really all about, well, it'll make about as much sense as anything else you've seen up to that point.

The cast is a virtual who's who of 60's and 70's exploitation films, with the curvaceous sex bombs, Marsha Jordan and Uschi Digard, among the most notable of them. All the actors don't really do much acting, as the film is much more centered on the sexual displays, as most films of this kind are. The scenes are well shot and a few of them are actually quite erotic. As is typical of such fare, the guys are the average, hairy males you would find walking the streets in the 70's, while the women as all have bodaciously banging bods and curves. No one ever said that sexploitation films were bastions of gender equality.

Writer/director Ronald Victor Garica was obviously out to make this a very different kind of exploitation film. In that he certainly succeeded, as there is no other film I've seen that is anything like this. Of course, being unique doesn't make this an excellent effort. During most of the first act, much of the voice dubbing is off, which can be distracting. To cover for this, Garcia falls back on Doris Wishman's classic trick, of have the actor that's supposed to be speaking facing away from the camera, thereby circumventing the need for proper dubbing. The music sounds exactly like what you'd hear on old episodes of the classic "Star Trek" series and some of the special effects are, well, just not that special. Garcia's attempt to blend horror, sci-fi, and sexploitation into a cohesive form doesn't really play out, but it does make for some strange and intriguing scenes, which will probably hold your attention, until you get to the revelations behind what you've seen.

"The Toy Box" is unlike anything you could ever hope to see, then or today. While I can't quite call it "good," the quirky and outlandish nature of the film does have a very strange entertainment value to it. Within the world of sexploitation films (and, more broadly, of film in general), this one defies easy categorization and stands alone in its erratic and eccentric tone. Fans of the genre should check it out at least once, just for the experience of the sheer spectacle of it all. But don't expect it to make any kind of lasting impact on you, except to, perhaps, have you never look at your bed the same way again.


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