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Yet another Euro film based on the memoirs of goodtime gal Josephine
Mutzenbacher (aside from several softcore, there were also the XXX
SENSATIONAL JANINE and PROFESSIONAL JANINE). All credits are
pseudonymous in the US video version. Several of the plot incidents are
also found in PROFESSIONAL JANINE. Among the familiar set pieces are
the party at the tavern, including the orchestra, and the missing watch
Josephine, a somewhat hard-looking redhead in her late 20s (Jane Iwanoff), shacked up with a businessman in the city, gets a visit from her country cousin Veronica, whom she initiates into the trade (though I'd say, watching Veronica in action, that she's been there before). After Jo's b.f. catches them partying, the girls have to make their own way, eventually seducing an *old* guy they meet at a brothel into financing a whorehouse of their own.
Fairly trivial stuff, but the women are offbeat attractive in a Europorn way. They don't look like plasticized, coked-up Hollywood pornettes of the late 70s/early 80s (or today, for that matter!). Dig the hairy pits and legs on hick Veronica, a little plain jane brunette hardly-the-type. And when did you ever see a guy as old as the one Jo, Veronica, and their redhead friend Sissy triple-team getting lucky in a US film? (Ron Jeremy doesn't count.)
Dubbing is so-so. A voice very familiar to American audiences of Euro imports essays the Josephine character. Tech credits are OK for a film shot all indoors, and the camera is focused. Billian's mise-en-scéne is not up to his near-contemporary "Josefine Mutzenbacher -- wie sie wirklich war," aka "Sensational Janine," but it's still a professional-looking picture, and well above average for the genre.
Anyone who watches a lot of porn soon gets tired of seeing the same old faces (&c) over and over. Most of the cast here are far from overexposed, and the porn scenes are watchable. Fans will note the presence of Barbara Moose and her co-star from "Pleasure So Deep" (a curly head blonde who played the maid in the latter film) at the big orgy finale. Lead Iwanoff also had a role in "Pleasure," so it's sort of old home week on the set.
Outstanding European XXX tells the early years of Josephine
Mutzenbacher (Janine in US version), Viennese courtesan of c1890. Here
she starts off as mischievous virgin and never does quite reach pro
ranks, with in medias res ending that sets up the sequel. The story
falters a bit here and there, but lead work by Patricia Romberg is
completely winning. She seems to be having a good time throughout and
is perhaps the most adorable hardcore starlet of all time.
Porn sequences are shorter, and more numerous, than in the average US film, and are well staged by director Hans Billian. Several sequels have been made but all are inferior to the original, not least because Rhomberg did not appear in any of them.
Biggest drawback is that many of the cast are unusually *old* to be working in porno and are not particularly attractive. Janine's mother and stepfather, who both have several XXX scenes, appear to be in their 50s. The priest who hears Janine's confession (there is a touch of anti-clericalism here) looks even older, though it's not clear how much of his own stuntwork he actually does, due to editing. Most of the featured males have the mien of drug-dealing pimps.
Film would have been much more enjoyable had the knockout Romberg been teamed with a cast more on her own physical level, but she does keep that sweet smile shining throughout. Even dubbed, as here, she's a total charmer and is enough reason all by herself to watch this film.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Bickering sibs Taylor Locke and Carly Pope accidentally time-travel
from a modern ghost town to the days of the old west. (They seem pretty
blasé about the whole business.) Here they tangle with mean local
rednecks before a teen cowboy helps them out. *Then* the flying saucer
crashes in nearby woods, carrying 2 cute, furry, stuffed-animal-like
aliens whom the kids must save from the rednecks. Story obviously
derives quite closely from E.T., and it is no spoiler to disclose that
the ending is *not* tragic. Tech credits are competent enough but SFX
are on the lowbudget side. The alien mom and child are cuddly.
Younger kids should identify with Locke, who is pretty much a one-note smartass throughout and gets some OK lines. Personally, I'd like to give him a good smack, but others say he reminds them a great deal of me at about age 12. (I don't buy this but will give him benefit of the doubt.) Carly Pope's character begins as a sullen, snotty, rebellious teenage semi-JD, makes an expected transition to the sweeter (though kinda smug about being so pretty) GND type she plays (1999+) on WB's POPULAR, albeit with a much more obvious Canadian accent and tighter jeans here. Harmless SF stuff for kids, with no sex, traumatic violence, or bad language. Older Pope fans may want to take a look or two as well. (You know who you are.)
German expedition to Africa's darkest jungle region stumbles upon topless
blonde girl whom natives revere as a goddess. Is she possibly the long-lost
granddaughter of wealthy Hamburg industrialist? (Would there be a movie if
she wasn't?) Well, then, let's take her back to the BRD and reunite her
her family. But will she ever be able to adjust to a world of cars, tap
water, and wearing a bra? Therein lies the conflict.
This was strictly adults-only US release of the 1950s and played for years as a "special". The NYT critic of the day declared it virtual pornography, though the exploitation material consists of some seminude Africans in NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC-type footage and a few peeks at the bare breasts of heroine Marion Michael, a fresh-faced German teenager. Her long fake hair, and the lion cub she frequently carries around, protect her modesty considerably. (Compare Tanya Roberts in SHEENA, which showed more and drew a PG from the MPAA.)
If, and I'm not naming names, you were too young to see this in the 50s or even the early 60s, when it played your nabe, and you always wondered what kind of positively adults-only thrills you might be missing, LIANE is available in a not-bad (but not-great) print from Sinister Cinema and you can satisfy your curiosity.
The storyline is pretty thin and is laid out point for point in the IMDB synopsis above. Marion is cute as a button and looks a lot more like a 1950s SEVENTEEN covergirl than a denizen of the tropischer Urwald. Sinister describes this as its best-selling Jungle Thrills entry, so apparently I'm not the only one who was waiting for this to hit video. Like so many other long-deferred delights, the anticipation was rather more rewarding than the fulfillment.
Very obscure early L.A. hardcore was apparently shot in a small house in the Valley. The only recognizable (to me) male is John C Holmes, difficult to miss. Principal femmes (redhead Brandy Saunders, looking about 15 with no makeup and a zillion freckles, and 2 blondes I don't ID) have that only-in-the-early-70s, high school hippie look and may even have made this film as a hoot during Senior Skip Day at Ridgemont. Explicit but far from erotic, and the only print I have seen is a bit worn. I give this a 2, instead of a 1, on the IMDB scale because the girls often look as if they are goofing on the experience of making a dirty movie. The sound is not very good but you can hear, as background music for sex scenes, what sounds like a cover of "What's Going On?" and what sounds like the original Elton John cut of "Honky Cat."
I saw this on bigscreen back in 1975 with no idea what it was about; it
just that week's feature at a porno house I occasionally visited, so I
bought a ticket and went in. What it *is* is a story about Carol Scrooge,
heartless editor of a PLAYGIRL-like male nudie mag, who is abusive to her
employee Bob Cratchit and who receives a visit on Xmas Eve from the ghost
of... You get the picture.
"Ring Christmas Bells" music will put a seasonal twinkle in your heart, but why do all of Ms Scrooge's holiday memories seem to involve hardcore sex? Does she ever get the Xmas spirit?
Cheaply made, and much in need of a script polish and a few extra days' production time, this is still an imaginative porn effort. Sonny Landham guests as prospective male model auditioned by Scrooge and her secretary; cult actress Susan Sloane appears in a kinky flashback of Xmas Past; Bob Cratchit (Jamie Gillis) and wife Tiny Kim (Pope) celebrate in their own sweet way. And you've never seen the reunion of Scrooge with Marley's ghost visualized quite as it is here.
One-of-a-kind pic is a must-see for anyone interested in the porn genre and should not be overlooked by dedicated Dickens scholars, either. My copy of this tape is on the Video-X-Pix label, which folded years ago. I don't know of a currently available version but it is certainly worth looking for and rates a 5 for its chutzpah. The concept is a bit better than the porn content. Play this and the Alistair Sim version back to back.
Also known as THE BIG CON, this is a porn version of THE STING, shot on a
small budget but with a fair 1930s ambience and some OK incidental music of
the jazz-hokum variety. Grifters Eric Edwards, Alan Marlo, and Sarah
Nicholson (aka Jennifer Jordan) unite to separate rich yokel Hardy Harrison
from his money by selling him a fake brothel. Nicholson noted this as her
second XXX film role in a published interview of the time.
Brothel setting allows for some filler footage (voyeured by bug-eyed Harrison) of alleged hookers and johns in action, but there is very little hardcore in the production overall. Sonny Landham (who later had Hollywood action film credits) and stalwart Jamie Gillis road-test some of the staff, and disco diva Andrea True ("More More More") provides one of the most modest appearances of her lengthy porn career. Film is not a standard grinder in any sense of the word and would have worked as well -- perhaps better -- in softcore format, though it might not have found a release at all without the porn circuit for support. It's moderately amusing though shot on a shoestring, and seekers of cheap thrills will definitely be disappointed. Most of the actresses in hardcore scenes are a bit on the unglamorous side.
African expedition finds wild white girl living with animals on a backlot
jungle set. Although not reflected in the IMDB credits, the titular (and
then some) role is played by Femi Benussi, at her most gorgeous. There are
bad guys and good guys on the expedition, but the principal point of the
film is summed up in the observation that Femi spends about 99% of her
screen time wearing nothing but a little junglekini thong bottom. (She
terrific, traveling the jungle on elephantback.) At one point she finds
of the expedition's castoff junk, including discarded clothing, and slips
into a jacket she's found in the debris. Her pet chimp eyes her up and
then shakes his head "no" and she slips right back out of the jacket. (This
seems to be conclusive proof that the Darwinian theory is, after all,
One of numerous topless jungle girl movies emanating from Europe in the late 1960s and 1970s, this is par for the genre. This was not released in the US till about 1976, and then with partly anglicized credits which omitted Femi altogether. The only US video print I have seen, on the Sinister Cinema label, is a bit scratchy but watchable. Femi is worth a wow! in this. (So now where can I find a copy of AMAZONS FOR TWO ADVENTURERS, with peachy Marie Ekorre in a 1970s German version of this perennial favorite theme among voyeurs?)
Curious hybrid of horror and hardcore doesn't really work on either level
but is still an honorable experiment. Beautiful redhead coed Cyndee
(even in hooker undies and too much makeup) visits her ancestral family
and strange things happen. How come everybody at the party looks *dead*?
is the naked wild girl who looks just like Cyn (and is also a dead ringer
for the Bonnie Raitt of the early 70s; wow)? What is the story with
aunt (a hardly-the-type for porn films if you ever saw one)? Maybe Cyn's
b.f. and favorite prof from school should take a spin out to the farm and
see if everything is OK.
The horror elements are extremely low budget. The sex scenes are very few and tend to the tame side, with considerable insert footage, though Summers appears to be doing her own stunt work in the closeups. There is some real suspense in waiting to find out if the (highly) unlikely aunt is going to put out or not. The mix of pseudo-Lovecraft Gothic with XXX is not smooth, and the film's heat and chill levels both stay low. This will not satisfy either the horror fan or the quester in search of le cinema bleu, though it might be relatively stimulating to a Trappist monk whose satellite dish can't get Cinemax or even MTV.
Basically this is an unsuccessful experiment from the days when no one really knew where sexually explicit cinema was going and stabs were made in many directions to see where the blood flowed thickest.
Another Teutonic adaptation of the memoirs of turn-of-the-century goodtime
gal Josephine Mutzenbacher (known as JANINE in the US versions), this is
also known as PROFESSIONAL JANINE and is the official sequel to SENSATIONAL
JANINE, one of the best XXX films ever made.
Tall cool brunette Leila Vigso stars. She has an ever wry-smile as she engages in numerous sex acts, but neither she nor the picture ever come to a boil. The erotic scenes are mostly very short, allowing many more of them than usual, but they are also poorly filmed, cheating the viewer of involvement. The director here worked as DP on the prequel, SENSATIONAL, but seems to have learned virtually nothing about the technique of staging erotic sex scenes there.
The cast is attractive, lacking the extremely old people who are found in the first JANINE picture. Karine Gambier appears in 2 sequences. Vigso seems a little smug in the role and, though she looks good, she also looks like a pretty cold fish sexually. Certainly the story calls for a business-like approach, but she gives me the impression she'd be happier in some other business, most of the time.
Janine begins hooking in the park, wins and then loses a Viennese businessman who won't tolerate her cheating, and is left to her wits again. She spends some time at a coffeehouse which fronts a brothel, before being rescued by a Hungarian Hussar who takes her to the country. There is a wacky sex-on-horseback competition with the Hussar and his army buddies (different, but not really very sexy, due to the obvious problems of filming it), and a party at a rural inn turns into an orgy. Then Janine is back in Vienna again, opening her own brothel with another orgy. The ending just segues toward a sequel.
Despite a lot of open-air filming and a large, attractive cast, this version of the story is inferior, as porno, to a competing rendition, JOSEPHINE, made about the same time. Between story bits we visit the park where a gravel-voiced hurdygurdy man croaks out verses of a vulgar ballad about Janine. He's supposed to be funny and may have been more so in the German language version. Overall, film is a disappointment, especially to anyone who has seen SENSATIONAL JANINE.
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