Currently tucked away on an Alpha Blue Archives DVD about Westerns, DR. CARSTAIRS is a surprisingly good example of that rare bird, XXX Western saga.
Credited to "Hans Christian", who has his own IMDb page, but apparently is one and the same as cameraman Henning Schellerup, the movie looks good, has decent location photography, and even the period dress rings true. It's simple-minded in script, but no dumber than any of dozens of Charles Starrett B-Westerns of the '40s and '50s cranked out by Columbia.
Looking a bit like both Val Avery and William Conrad, William Guhl is effective in the title role, as a 19th Century huckster traveling the West with his plain-Jane but sexy daughter Jenny (an unidentified actress) selling a tonic for $1 a bottle which seemingly has aphrodisiac qualities,.
He formerly had a gold mine in a small town he returns to, but evil Garett (Tony Vorno, who looks a lot like soft porn star Gary Kent) has stolen his supposedly tapped out mine. Minor plot line here has Carstairs settling old scores with Garett.
At least in the ABA version, this film is an unusual example of a successful spice-up splice job, wherein fully XXX insert shots logically extend the sex scenes into what 1972 audiences really wanted to see. Dance hall girls (or are they really prostitutes) Marsha Jordan and Kathy Hilton were soft-core stars, but with doubles in new footage latter convincingly goes hardcore for the viewer's imagination, as does the Jenny character. One drawback however is that for fellatio footage the performer doubling for each actress does not look like the original performer.
The sex scenes are remarkably effective in their hybrid form and probably improve rather than tarnish the original film. I'm giving away the ending only because that will encourage people to make the effort to see it (rather than "spoiling" anything given the film's obscurity and dinky plot line). There's a clever scene of Hilton and Jordan hiding stolen gold dust bags in their vaginae (well-shot and staged to be quite credible without being explicit), in the manner of modern "mules" smuggling drugs. This sets up a terrific final gag where Hilton rewards the various cowpokes in the saloon with literally a different kind of Golden Shower.
Homeowrk assignment is identify the actress who played Jenny, a talented enough trouper who is key to this film's success.
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