Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy)
Mata Hari (1985)
Another legendary skin-fest has finally come to Region 1 DVD.
Sylvia Kristel, the original screen Emmanuelle, was nearing the end of her
prime softcore days when she starred in this film, and she was either out of
shape or pregnant. The director made a
special effort to shoot her in soft focus, behind gauze, in fog, through vaseline,
through dark filters, and every other trick he could think of to maintain the illusion of
youthful beauty. For the most part, it worked, although you will destroy the
illusion if you scrutinize the images too meticulously. If you study the
close-ups, you can see that she looks older than they want you to think. If you
look at the middle of her body, you'll see saddlebags and a bulging tummy. If
you just go with the flow, however, it will seem like 1974 all over again.
In fact, the entire concept of this film is early 70s. The idea of using a
historical person, legend, or epic as the basic for a softcore sex film was all
in vogue back in those days. There was the Long Swift Sword of Siegfried, The
Undercover Scandals of Henry VIII, The Ribald Tales of Robin Hood, The Erotic
Adventures of Zorro, and probably many more that I'm forgetting. As a historical
softcore, Mata Hari would fit right in. It isn't really fair to compare Mata
Hari with those films, however. They are basically low-budget cheesefests played
mostly for laughs and sex. Mata Hari is, astoundingly enough, a serious biopic
of the famous alleged double agent, complete with slit throats and grisly World
War One battle wounds. Somebody went to a lot of trouble to assemble old-time
trains, armaments, uniforms, costumes, trench warfare, and vehicles in an effort to incorporate
some period detail. I don't know whether the period artifacts are authentic
(some of those 1914 cars looked to me like they were from a much later era, but
I'm no expert), but
the general look and feel of the film evokes an era circa WW1, at least to this
casual observer. So let's give the director credit for what he accomplished.
One thing the director couldn't create was the feel of the specific European
locales. There just wasn't enough money. In fact,
if you pay attention to this film, you'll get the feeling that Europe had a single unified
culture in 1914, and that all European cities look exactly alike. The story
begins in the streets of Paris (Budapest with French signs), moves to Berlin
(Budapest with German signs), and thence to Madrid (Budapest with Spanish
signs). In fact, some of the same landmarks in Buda were visible in more than
one city! Oh, well. I guess the point is that it looked all old-timey and
European, with lots of buildings painted mustard yellow, so that worked OK, and the Indonesian
dance number looks quiet exotic, whether or not it is authentic. All in all, I
give the director credit for the ol' college try. He did what he good to create
the right atmosphere, he found some great locales, he worked around Kristel's physical appearance, and
in general he did as much as he could have done with the money he had to work with.
Unfortunately, the director couldn't do much with the main thing that the
film got wrong: the leading lady. Because of her inappropriate physical
was not an especially good choice for a sex film, but the entire film was made
to capitalize on her international popularity as a softcore legend. Of course,
she was at least passable as the star of the international cut, which showed off
her breasts as often as possible, simply because she was Sylvia Kristel and she
was undressed. Unfortunately, the film was shown in the
United States with the nude love scenes cut out, a disastrous circumstance that
forced American audiences to evaluate the film as a legitimate historical drama,
and to evaluate Kristel as a legitimate actress. In other words, watching the
American version of Mata Hari was like watching Brigadoon without the music.
There was simply no reason to release the film
in the United States with all those scenes cut out of the picture. It can't pass
as an art film or a historical epic, mostly because there is just no
way any director can get a credible performance from Sylvia. Her
biographies always make much of her high I.Q. and her fluency in several
languages, but the stark reality is that she could never bring any of that
alleged intellect into her acting abilities, and if she speaks English fluently
it is not apparent in this English language performance. She always appears to
be lifeless, nearly stunned, pronouncing all her lines as if they had been
memorized phonetically without understanding them.
On the other hand, let's celebrate her for her participation in the one truly
memorable thing in this film: a topless swordfight. Now that's entertainment!
After watching the film, I felt that the plot was sort of confusing and
lacked specificity. I could never tell precisely who the hell Mata Hari's
allegiance belonged to, and I couldn't really understand the significance of
what the various sides were asking her to do. I reconsidered the significance of
that opinion once I started reading about the real Mata Hari. Although she
traveled throughout Europe and was intimate with important men on both sides of
the conflict, there is really no evidence to show that she ever turned anything
of value over to anyone, and historians have reached no conclusions about where
her true loyalties lay. Although the French convicted her of espionage and
executed her as a wartime spy, the facts of the case are just as murky and
obscure as portrayed in the film. I suppose it is always possible to stray far
from the truth and thus create a romantic yarn, but there just wasn't much more
to do with the unembellished facts. The legend of Mata Hari sounds like it would
be a great subject for a film, but the fact of the matter is that the legend is
not really justified by what we know about her, and the real story of Mata Hari
is one of an entertainer traveling through Europe, sleeping with important men,
and therefore asked by the men on one side what the men on the other side were
doing. That's about it, and that's about what the film showed.
Sylvia Kristel (no pubes, only fleeting
looks at her bum, and never full-on. Mostly just breasts.
Unknowns. (all body parts, male and female)
Words and pictures from Hankster:
Well I guess you would have to say today is an all "Babes in Bondage" day as
we take a look at "Shallow Ground" (2005).
Scoop has reviewed this one
so we will skip the details and just get to the caps. (Scoop's note: It is a
low budget horror movie with weak acting and poor production values. And I
liked it!!! Go figure.)
Needless to say both Tara Killian and Natalie Avital are both in bondage as
they are suspended in the woods wearing only their panties. Rather graphic
stuff for a mainstream movie. The final cap is Christine Boutros laying
naked in the woods after being abducted.
Words and pictures from Striplight:
You will love these. Maybe I should have held this one back
till last, of the set I have it may be the best.
A couple of puppets are put away for the evening; the
puppeteer heads off to bed. Well, you can’t fault him, he’s not to know the
moment his back’s turned the puppets are going to strip off and have a bit of a
dance around. He probably doesn’t even know that the lady puppet is bloody
And she is.
More to follow…
Scoop's note: As perhaps the world's foremost and
least-respected connoisseur of puppet sex and nudity, I approve heartily.
The Crimson Ghost
Big Brother #6 - UK
Caps and comments by Dann:
have trouble recognizing then-18-year-old Melanie Griffith in Night Moves,
a 1975 thriller, but it is her....pretty much all of her, in fact.
She plays a runaway teenager who has run off from a really nasty mother, an
aging actress with a rotten attitude, to live with her stepfather. Momma
inherits a ton as long as daughter stays with her, so she hires a loser private
detective to bring daughter home. Things don't go as planned, as the P.I. gets
way too personally involved.
This is a decent enough movie, although not terribly original. I also thought
Gene Hackman as the detective seemed stiff and wooden. The main attraction to
this movie was to see several soon-to-be-stars including Melanie and James
Woods, another that you'll barely recognize. There are several other
recognizable actors as well, so not withstanding some flaws, this is a
worthwhile 70's film.
Pat Reeder - The Comedy Wire
Pat's comments in yellow:
LANCE WINS 7TH TOUR DE FRANCE
Fine French Whine - Sunday in Paris, Texan Lance
Armstrong won a record seventh Tour de France, by a wide four minutes, 40
seconds. Some French
commentators still refused to admit he's that good naturally and brought up old
doping rumors, despite Armstrong's never failing a drug test. They hinted that
someday, the whole story will be known for sure -- though, of course, they hope
the rumors aren't true.
* The French should just give up...That should come
* How can a country famous for wine have so many sour grapes?
* They're particularly bitter because this time, just to make it interesting,
he rode a tricycle.
* They're just jealous because he has more testicles than they do.
WOMEN TALK ABOUT SEX
T.G.I.M. - A survey by Self magazine found that
Mondays aren't the worst day of the week, in one way, at least: 77 percent of
women surveyed said Monday is the day they are most likely to have sex. One
explained that "Monday is a good day to fit it in before the week gets too
* This is especially true if they're sleeping with the
* They tell their husbands, "I can squeeze it in between dinner and 'CSI:
* So if you're not having sex with your wife on Mondays, you might wonder who
Nail Me! - The survey also reveals other sex
secrets of women. For instance, 20 percent fantasize about sex while getting
their nails done, while 41 percent daydream about sex while doing the laundry.
* Mostly during the spin cycle...
* My wife daydreams about doing the laundry while we're having sex...She also
occasionally does her nails.
TELEMARKETERS TO REMOVE DEAD PEOPLE FOR A FEE
Not Merely Dead But Really Most Sincerely Dead -
The Direct Marketing Association is launching a Deceased Do-Not-Call list to
save bereaved families from having to tell telemarketers that the person they're
calling is dead. However, it will cost one dollar to remove dead people from
phone, e-mail and direct mail lists. The fee is for credit card verification
and the cost of checking to make sure the people on the list are really dead.
* They'll do that by calling them direct at home.
* After that, they start calling your widow to sell her a membership in a
* Better yet, tell them if they don't stop calling, you'll put THEM on the
* It's almost worth getting on the Do-Not-Resuscitate list, if it'll get you
onto the Do-Not-Call list.
PRISONER FINDS FINGERTIP IN CORNBREAD
Fingered A Second Time! - Felipe Rocha, who is
serving time in Pelican Bay State Prison in California on a drug charge, is
suing GA Food Services of
Florida after he chewed on a crunchy object in the cornbread in his frozen
prison dinner and discovered it was a fingertip. GA apologized, admitting a
worker severed a finger and saying, "We're red-faced about it." Not good
enough: Rocha says he's a Buddhist and a vegetarian, he can no longer eat,
he's lost 15 pounds in two weeks, and he's still in counseling.
* But he's making progress: yesterday, the counselor got
him to nibble a ladyfinger.
* 15 pounds in two weeks?! Kirstie Alley should eat a finger!
* He can't keep any food down ever since he put a finger down his throat.
* For a guy who takes drugs and eats prison food, he sure is squeamish about
what he puts in his body.
* Technically, it was legal for the finger to be in cornbread because there was
a corn on it.
WOMAN PAYS TO AVOID BIRTHING ANTICHRIST'S BABY
Rosemary's Booby - A cabaret singer and his
girlfriend in Palermo, Italy, were charged with fraud after they allegedly
convinced a 47-year-old woman
that they were vampires. They told her they would impregnate her with the son
of the Anti-Christ if she didn't buy pills from them to abort him at $3,600 (US)
per pill. By the time police uncovered the scam, she'd paid them over $60,000.
* It worked, though!
* She could've gotten the generic version of that pill for $1500.
* They weren't really vampires, but they sure were bloodsuckers.
* This is the most unbelievable thing I've ever heard! A male cabaret singer
has a GIRLFRIEND?!
FLOOD VICTIMS DON'T NEED BALL GOWNS AND HIGH HEELS
Flooded With Crap - Organizers of a drive to help
flood victims in Bacau County, Romania, say about 10 percent of their donations
are completely useless. They include formal dress clothing, makeup and high
heels. Charity workers say the flood victims can't use it, but they can't
offend donors by refusing it, so they don't know what to do with it.
* Send it to San Francisco, to help all the homeless drag
* High heels might come in handy in a flood, if they're high enough.
* Wait, is it waterproof makeup?!
* The flood victims could look like soaking wet heiresses, and the Paris Hilton
look is very in.
MAN MUGS HIMSELF TO AVOID GIRLFRIEND'S ANGER
And He Doesn't Have A Dog - Court TV reports that
Douglas Kelly of Slidell, Florida, told police he'd gone out at 1 a.m. to buy
dog food and was hit in
the head, robbed, stuffed in the trunk of his '94 Cadillac and driven around for
two hours before he tripped the emergency latch and escaped. But police
wondered why he waited four hours to report this, then they discovered the car
didn't have a trunk latch and the store didn't sell dog food. Kelly admitted
he'd blown his money at the Scuttlebutt strip club and was scared of his
pregnant girlfriend's reaction. He was fined $500 for making a false police
* He begged them to put him under protective custody
* He told his girlfriend he was abducted by space aliens who robbed him of
* When his girlfriend found out, she scuttled HIS butt.
* His girlfriend went out to buy dog food because that's all she feeds him now.
* His girlfriend wasn't angry; just concerned that her baby's daddy is that
SUGGESTIVE AIRLINE ADS A HIT (CAREFUL! NOTE SUBJECT!)
Coffee, Tea Or Meat? - Detroit-based Spirit
Airlines has launched a marketing campaign to promote their planes' extra
legroom. The slogans include, "Want an extra six inches?...Admit it: Size DOES
matter!...Bigger IS better!" The ads also include a warning: "Enjoying an extra
six inches for more than four hours does not require you to contact your
doctor." There have been some complaints, but Spirit's head of marketing says
the consumer response has been "fantastic."
* But once they get on the plane, they somehow seem
* Other airlines only offer you nuts.
* Of course, what matters in a plane is not whether they offer you an extra six
inches, but whether the pilot can keep it up.
ART FESTIVAL ANNOYS EVEN THE FRENCH
All Turner Prize Nominees - One of Europe's top
arts events, the Avignon Theater Festival in France, is so bad this year, even
French arts critics hated it. Audiences booed shows ranging from a 15-minute
film of ocean waves to a dance accompanied by unbearable electronic noise to a
work in which actors placed mannequins of young girls in sexual postures on top
of coffins. Newspapers called it "purgatory;" vague, pretentious, lazy;
"bloated by its own importance and of unfathomable tedium;" and an "artistic and
moral disaster" with "a triumphant sense of masturbatory autism." One
ticketbuyer who walked out of a boring and baffling "theatre-dance-music-video"
piece shouted at the actors, "What have you got against us?!"
* Well, wouldn't you feel utter contempt for anyone who
bought a ticket to that?
* It was not only boring, baffling, lazy, bloated, pretentious garbage, but
they already saw it all last year.
* The only popular attraction was an apparent performance art installation
called "concession stand."
* On the bright side, one theater in Avignon cleaned up showing that penguin
SENIORS CAN'T FORGET MAN'S NAKED BUTT
First One She's Seen Since The Bicentennial Party -
The Daytona Beach News Journal reports that a 73-year-old woman in New Smyrna
Beach, Florida, woke up Saturday to see a skinny nude man with a ponytail
standing at the foot of her bed. She screamed and he ran away. The next
morning, a 79-year-old woman woke up and nearly stepped on a naked man who ran
off before police arrived. Five similar incidents have occurred since 2001.
Neither woman saw his face; they only saw his bare butt. The second woman said,
"That is something I will never forget."
* It's burned into her memory, like hot-cross buns.
* She never imagined she'd regret getting her Lasik surgery.
* Well, you don't see too many naked butts with a ponytail.
* This is Florida: he'll keep breaking into bedrooms until he finds SOMEBODY
WANT A HIT SONG? BE A STRIPPER
Take It Off! - Entertainment Weekly reports on how
to have a hit song today: The Pussycat Dolls were a popular burlesque revue in
L.A. with hot chicks flouncing to music in skimpy clothes. Universal decided
they could be turned into a girl group and released their song "Don't Cha."
That annoys Atlanta R&B singer Tori Alamaze, who put out the same song a few
months ago. It only reached #53, so she claims Universal dumped her and gave
her song with a near-identical arrangement to "the Copycat Dolls." When sung by
hot chicks in skimpy clothes with a big media push, it went to the top 10.
* Don't Cha just hate that?
* Next, Paris Hilton will take it to #1.
* Tori Alamaze wishes she were sexy like them.
* Why develop artists like Britney Spears when you can cut to the chase and
just release records by actual strippers?
FATHER OF 12 ANNOUNCES HE'S GAY
He's Leaving Her For Ann Coulter - Alina Look of
Graz, Austria, divorced her husband Hannes after they had 12 children together
when he shocked her
by announcing he was gay and leaving her for a man. He reportedly told her that
he got her pregnant 12 times just so she'd have "something to do."
* ...while he was at the gym.
* Actually, he turned gay so he could finally have sex without getting a kid
out of it.
"ISLAND" SINKS, PENGUINS RISE
Next Time, Let Scarlet Go Topless - The weekend's
big movie debut, Michael Bay's "The Island," bombed bigtime. The $122 million
action film about
clones made just $12.1 million. On Saturday and Sunday, "March of the Penguins"
made nearly twice as much per screen. In fact, the penguins are on track to
surpass Michael Moore's "Bowling for Columbine" as the second-highest grossing
documentary ever. Warners is already jumping on the penguinmania bandwagon by
preparing a computer-animated cartoon about Emperor penguins called "Happy
* They should call it "Cold Feet."
* And CBS is planning a new sitcom: "Everybody Loves Penguins."
* People must love documentaries that star fat, waddling creatures who smell
* They should've put a few penguins on that island.
(NOTE! Why watch "The Island" when you could see "Parts: The Clonus Horror" on
Mystery Science Theater? Same movie, only with wisecracking
robots to make it amusing.)
are the latest movie reviews available at scoopy.com.
- The yellow asterisks indicate that I wrote the
review, and am deluded into thinking it includes humor.
- If there is a white asterisk, it means that
there isn't any significant humor, but I inexplicably determined
there might be something else of interest.
- A blue asterisk indicates the review is written
by Tuna (or Junior or Brainscan, or somebody else besides me)
- If there is no asterisk, I wrote it, but am too
ashamed to admit it.
Comedienne JOAN RIVERS has launched a vicious attack on
VICTORIA BECKHAM, labelling the former pop star an
'arrogant shrew'. Wow. How arrogant and shrewish
would one have to be for Joan Rivers to notice? That's
sort of like Michael Jackson noticing that someone is a
Actor-director Mel Gibson is well on his way to
cornering a new niche market in Hollywood -- movies
written in ancient languages. He's moving from
Aramaic to Mayan for his next one.
Naked in New York.
Here's the trailer from the intriguingly named Mobsters
- When forced by the FBI to rat out mob boss Angelo
Marcello (Michael Kagan), Carmine "The Beans" Pasquale
(Mark Decarlo, voice of Hugh Neutron on Jimmy Neutron)
is a wanted man on the lam being hunted by hit man
Little Nicky Cappuccio (Joe Maruzzo, The Sopranos).
Taking along wife Gina (Jeanette Punich) and son
Vincent (Clay Taylor), Carmine enters the federal
witness relocation program and is given a new home and
a new identity. Now known as The Cheeseman Family from
Omaha, Nebraska, these former East Coast mobsters are
relocated into the middle of a quiet, straight laced
Mormon community in Utah where much to Carmine's
frustration; he can't even find a decent cup of coffee
let alone a horse track. Life in this small town
becomes anything but ordinary once The Cheesemans move
in. Many locals are weary, if not outright afraid of
these rough around the edges outsiders, while others
go annoyingly far out their way to try to embrace
them. Despite the efforts of well meaning neighbor
Michael Jaymes (Scott Christopher, The Best Two Years)
to help Carmine feel welcome, Carmine can't help but
wonder if being this much of a fish out of water -- is
actually better than "sleeping with the fishes."
Here's a ten minute clip from Stealth, an action
movie starring Jamie Foxx, Jessica Biel, and Josh Lucas.
Here is the full trailer for a sci-fi adventure named
Zathura. Jon Favreau is the director; Tim Robbins is
the star. The official blurb says:
- In Columbia Pictures heart-racing sci-fi adventure
"Zathura," two squabbling brothers are propelled into
deepest, darkest space while playing a mysterious game
they discovered in the basement of their old house. On
their fantastic journey they are joined by a stranded
astronaut and must survive meteor showers, hostile
lizard-like aliens, a rocket-propelled robot run amok
and an intergalactic spaceship battle. But their
greatest peril lies ahead. For unless they finish the
game and reach the planet Zathura, they are doomed to
be trapped in outer space forever. "Zathura" is based
on the best-selling book by the acclaimed children's
writer Chris Van Allsburg ("The Polar Express," "Jumanji").
Watch the first ten minutes of Disney's Sky High
(High School for Super Heroes)
SHUTTLE ASTRONAUTS TO EXPLORE CAPE CANAVERAL ... New
Mission Would Not Require Liftoff, NASA Concedes
As per the Sun article, here is that picture of
Charlotte Church's boobie
Corey Feldman mounts another comeback.
- Lord knows I've spent enough ink making fun of
Corey but, to be fair, he seems like a decent
down-to-earth guy, and is more talented than a lot of
people who have had much bigger careers.
"You've reached the suicide hotline. Our regular hours
are ..." The "executive director of the Beijing
Suicide Research and Prevention Center said only one in
10 callers could get through on the first try." I would
not want to be the guy who checks the messages.
listen to bob dylan - 90 seconds of each song on the
- I listened to more than half of them. I liked
Something Corporate's interpretation of Just Like A
Woman, but I didn't like it as much as Richie Havens's.
My opinion in general was that the artists stayed too
close to the original sound of the Dylan version
instead of bringing something new to it, as The Byrds,
Havens, and Peter Paul and Mary have done. On the
other hand, maybe that was the point.
"A source close to the production of Spider-Man 3
confirmed that the main villain played by Thomas Hayden
Church will in fact be the Chameleon."
TV Guide Readers pick: Top Five Celebrity Meltdowns
Did you know ....? The supposed "urban legend" of
alligators living in the New York sewers is not a legend
at all ...
"alligators really did thrive in the pipes during the
1930s." Actually, I'm not sure if alligators is the
right word - they were similar-looking reptiles about
two feet long, and they were exterminated in 1935.
Nobody really knows where they came from.
Is Your Boss a Psychopath? "What good is money if it
can't inspire terror in your fellow man?" - C.
Singing comedian Steven Lynch tells kids how to be a
super-hero, like "immigration dude." This guy has
the 60s folk singer schtick down cold.
The legend of the
Hawaiian goodluck sign
NBC has fallen and it can't get up. Last year was
"like a colonic," said the head of the entertainment
... good-bye, my baby ... farewell, my ragtime frog
WB fires Michigan Frog
Conan shares the best of Foreign Reality TV. This is
a very funny segment. (E.g. - Ingmar Bergman's "Girls
Gone Wild!"). Also, if you haven't seen it yet, check
out the other link for Buddy Cops. Conan consistently
has some of the best comedy writing on TV.
The trailer for Little Fish, an Aussie movie
starring some of the biggest stars Down Under. It was
shown at the Melbourne International Film Festival, but
I haven't seen a U.S. release date. Here's the blurb:
- "How do you learn to love again when the pain of
the past won't let you go? When you're 32 with a
troubled history and a doubtful future, it's a
question that isn't so easy to answer. And for Tracy
Heart (Cate Blanchett), it's a question she can no
longer ignore. After four years of treading water and
redeeming herself in the eyes of her hard-working
single mother, she has set herself the humble goal of
owning her own business. But the unexpected return of
her ex-boyfriend Jonny (Dustin Nguyen), the criminal
aspirations of her brother Ray (Martin Henderson) and
the emotional draw of troubled family friend and
ex-footy star Lionel Dawson (Hugo Weaving), creates
friction for Tracy. Her dream soon becomes tangled
with criminal boss, Bradley "The Jockey" Thompson (Sam
Neill) with shattering consequences. As a result,
Tracy's bond of trust with her mother Janelle (Noni
Hazlehurst) is tested and she has to confront her
fears to find happiness. A story about families. About
lies. And about learning to love again."
"Why would anyone want to celebrate a day of fear and
destruction that ended in a death?"
New Puppy Teaches Congress Important Lesson About
Man Convicted in Diaz Topless Photos Case
Desperate Housewives star Nicolette Sheridan has joined
the cast of a new comedy film The Cleaner. The
Cleaner is about an amnesiac janitor (Cedric the alleged
entertainer) who believes he is an undercover agent.
Bad Baby Names - they're not just for celebrities
Potential New Jersey legislation bans smoking in your
- What can ya say? New Jersey cops just have too
much time on their hands since the state eliminated
all serious crimes.
- Traffic safety groups acknowledge that motorists
already completely ignore the state's year-old law
against using hand-held cell phones. I suppose between
cell phones and cigarettes, New Jersey will have made
pretty close to 100% of the state's drivers into
- Personally, I support installing cameras in every
single car so we can monitor this situation carefully.
I will personally volunteer to watch Pam Anderson's
car, cuz I figure something fun will happen there
eventually. And if Hugh Grant is visiting, I'll watch
his car as well.
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since it's sorta in real time.
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