Monday

Tuna
"Flesh"

Flesh (1968) is the last of the Joe trilogy for me, although it was the first of the three. It is technically the worst of the bunch, and the story is nearly as bad as the technical aspects. This is the trilogy written and directed by Paul Morrissey and bankrolled by Andy Warhol. All feature Joe Dallesandro in the lead role. In this one, Joe supports his bi wife Geraldine Smith, who sometimes strips and sometimes turns tricks, as a gay prostitute. Smith, whose best known credit is Raging Bull, shows her breasts in a lengthy scene talking about getting silicone injections. The rest of the film follows Joe on the streets as he turns tricks and talks to the other male hookers.

All of the dialogue was improvised, and it was easy to tell which points the director asked them to cover, as those phrases were repeated multiple times. The film was cut using nothing but jump cuts, which is jarring enough, but they must have done it with a very cheap splicing system, as there is an audible pop and a flash of white for every cut.

IMDB readers have this at 5.8 of 10. It was made for $5K, and so must have been shot on 16, or maybe even super 8 mm, which would account for the graininess. Cannes awarded a Heritage award to the trilogy. This one didn't really impress the critics, although it was new and considered rather daring. I really wouldn't recommend this to anyone. It is an uninteresting story, poorly written, acted and produced, and is not a good transfer. Further, there are no features on the DVD. This is an E-.

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  • Geraldine Smith (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18)

    "The Fluffer"

    The Fluffer (2001) is an indie that is aimed for the gay male market. Michael Cunio, who describes himself as bi, comes to Hollywood to be in the movies. He rents Citizen Kane, but finds Citizen Cum when he gets home, and falls in love with the star, Scott Gurney. He takes a job as camera man with the porn studio that Gurney works for, and on his first shoot, takes the opportunity to "fluff" Gurney. Gurney, however, is straight, and is what is termed gay for pay. He appears in gay porn because it pays better than straight porn. He is living with Roxanne Day, who is a stripper. He is also not a very nice person.

    It was hard for me to tell what the point of the film was, but it seemed to be saying something about how worshiping film stars might not necessarily be a great idea. For a film about the sex industry, there is remarkably little of it, although we do see May's left breast in a very dark and red-tinted sex scene with Gurney.

    IMDB readers have this at 5.9 of 10. This is decidedly not my kind of material, and I had a lot of trouble keeping my eyes open. I suppose it is about a C-. Genre fans seem to think of it as OK.

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  • Roxanne Day (1, 2)

  • Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy)

    Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971)

    Imagine this movie:

    A couple of old British ladies share a young studmuffin painter. The old biddies are aware of each other, and would like to have the young man to themselves, but they are much happier with half a loaf than with none. The painter, for his part, seems to have nothing other than good looks. He exhibits no depth of feeling. He is pleasant to both women, but he doesn't really have any plans to incorporate either of the lonely old coots into his future. The oldsters, therefore, are not only relegated to half a loaf, but face the prospect that soon they will have none.

    In the course of the ten days during which the story takes place, we see everyday people doing and talking about everyday things: getting their shots, playing charades, babysitting the neighbors' kids, discussing the weather, getting a haircut. The big excitement for the two lonely old ladies is the sound of the phone - the prospect that the studmuffin may be calling.

    Sounds boring, doesn't it? Sounds like a very tedious soap opera. Your basic weepfest with a predictably pseudo-tragic ending.

    But that's not exactly a summary of Sunday Bloody Sunday. Not yet.

    OK, then, let's add some spice to it.

    Without changing the script in any way, let's simply have one of the old ladies be a man. No need to change the script, we'll just call him Daniel instead of Danielle, and hire a famous actor for the part. The studmuffin painter thus becomes a bi-sexual, but we won't really dwell on that or the matter of gender roles in general, and we won't really take any position in favor of or against bisexuality or homosexuality. In fact, we won't even mention the sex roles at all. We'll just film the script exactly the same way we would have done it with two women.

    Now we have a summary of Sunday Bloody Sunday.

    Now we still have the same incredibly boring soap opera, but we have generated a vast amount of instant controversy. When the young painter visits his doctor/lover, we don't see him smooching with an older woman, but with Peter Finch. Everyone around them simply takes all this for granted.

    This caused quite a stir in 1971, as you might imagine. The politically correct set felt that the offhanded treatment of the homosexual relationship was sophisticated and compassionate, signifying the beginning of a mature new world and a mature new cinema. The conservatives felt that the film's amoral, non-judgmental approach, as exemplified by its treatment of the two relationships as precisely equivalent, was morally reprehensible. The controversy got people talking about the movie, and about the issues it raised.

    Let's give the movie its due. It was groundbreaking. It featured a tolerant attitude during a time when such tolerance toward gay relationships was quite a daring thing to exhibit. It did that in a quiet and subtle way, without any preaching. It showed men kissing each other tenderly. Let us raise a glass to director John Schlesinger for using his considerable fame and influence to attract some fairly big movie stars to his project, and to bring this quiet little film to the public's attention.

    Having thus praised Caesar, let us then bury him. Let's be honest. The film was was otherwise unmemorable, and would have died a quiet death if every shot had been exactly the same, and every word of dialogue had been exactly the same, but the two old ladies had both been ladies. It's one of those movies which defines maturity by the lack of a sense of humor, the absence of dreams, and the constant habit of staring out of the window meaningfully.

    Critics either praised the film for its artistic merit and groundbreaking attitudes, or lambasted it for its digressions, and its complete lack of energy and entertainment value. I felt that Mark Adnum of Outrate.net was the one critic who kept the film in perfect perspective:

    Sunday Bloody Sunday is a meditational character study, and itís a brilliantly intelligent and melancholy film, but thereís something missing in the momentum department, and the meandering branch-off structure of the second act makes the last half hour a bit of an endurance test.

    Sidebar: this is the one and only theatrical film which was written by the film critic Penelope Gilliatt, who wrote for The New Yorker and the Observer (UK).

    She may not have had much of a career as a screenwriter, but she got an Oscar nomination in her one try, which puts her one up on fellow critic Roger Ebert, whose screenwriting contribution consisted of co-writing three Russ Meyer films.

    Although I recommend avoiding it, based on our system, this is a C. Of course, it is not my kind of movie, but I really had to struggle through this respected film. I started watching it three times before I could make it through. I couldn't find a single thing to enjoy about it, although there are things to admire.

    • Glenda Jackson (1, 2, 3, 4)

     

     

    OTHER CRAP:

     

    Other crap archives. May also include newer material than the ones above, since it's sorta in real time.

    Click here to submit a URL for inclusion in Other Crap

     

    MAILBOX:

    sub: More on Ben Stein

    Dear Uncle:

    Great site.  I start my day there every day.

    Ben Stein may be Deep Throat.  As you point out, he worked in Nixon's White House, and it was at the right time.  He was present at the resignation good-bye speech Nixon gave to the staff (sporting a near-afro.).  The anomaly of Deep Throat has always been, how could someone be both close enough AND disloyal enough, or "how does a liberal get into Nixon's white house?"  Maybe he gets there because his Father works in the innermost circle.  Anyway, I have no personal knowledge of any of this, but I heard somewhere, maybe on Ben Stein's Biography, that he was a childhood friend of Carl Bernstein.  That's a whole lot of coincidence.

    J.M., conspiracy theorist

    Scoop's reply:

     

    There is a logical connection, and Time Magazine said as long ago as 1974 or 1975 that Stein was one of five possibilities. Stein did go to high school with Carl Bernstein, and he did also write speeches for Richard Nixon, but the timing is wrong. Stein moved to Washington in April of 1973, long after the break-in.
     
    This from the Motley Fool Radio Show:

    David: We talked about this earlier, that you served in the Nixon White House. Buy, sell, or hold the likelihood that Ben Stein is Deep Throat?

    Stein: There was no Deep Throat, I'm sure of it. I certainly wasn't. At the time Deep Throat was operating, I was a hippie in the woods of Santa Cruz, Calif. -- so it wasn't me. And I don't think there was any Deep Throat. I think it was somebody Bob Woodward made up in one of his more imaginative moments, but that's just an opinion.

    See also this story about Stein and Bernstein.

    ====================

    sub: Bill Shatner speaks Esperanto?

    Hey Scoop, while researching Esperanto I found this interesting trivia about FunHouse favorite Captain Kirk.  Man does he have a lot on the IMDB - writer, director, many many TV show appearances, records, even CEO of his own special effects company.  Did you know that one of Shatner's wives drowned at his home?

    This movie, Incubus, was written and performed entirely in Esperanto, a made up language like Pig Latin. They won't even let it be translated in other languages. It seems like it has a Poltergeist-type curse attached to it also. 

    Incubus entry (movie) from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

    Incubus is a black and white horror film originally released in 1965 and later restored in 2001. Incubus was directed by Leslie Stevens, creator of The Outer Limits, and stars a pre-Star Trek William Shatner. Its striking black and white cinematography was by Conrad
    Hall, who later went on to win two Academy Awards for his work on the films Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and American Beauty.

    The story is about a succubus who falls in love with a deeply religious soldier (Shatner) she intended to seduce. Outraged by this, her sister summons their leader, a devilish incubus (Milos Milos), who rapes the soldier's sister and attempts to kill him. The entire film was shot and directed entirely in the constructed language Esperanto. It was done in Esperanto to create an eerie other-worldly feeling, and dubbing into other languages has been prohibited by the director. The 2001 DVD includes subtitles in English and French and the restoration was funded by the Sci-Fi Channel. Most English speakers have given the film good ratings and reviews, likening it to the work of Ingmar Bergman, while Esperanto speakers are generally disappointed by the actors' dreadful pronunciation.

    It is a common myth that Incubus was the first Esperanto film, but Angoroj appeared in 1964, one year before Incubus.

    Many members of the cast met rather gruesome fates after the film wrapped. Actor Milos killed his girlfriend and himself in 1966. Actress Ann Atmar, who plays Shatner's sister, committed suicide mere weeks after the film wrapped. And the daughter of actress Eloise Hardt was kidnapped and murdered. These grim events have given rise to a popular rumor that Incubus was a cursed production. 

    I found this to be even funnier than making a movie in Esperanto.  It is from the Wikipedia online encyclopedia, about "constructed languages":

    A constructed language can have "native" speakers, if children learn it at a young age from parents who have learned the language. Esperanto has a considerable number of native speakers, variously estimated to be between 200 and 2000. There was an attempt to raise a native Klingon speaker, but at that time the vocabulary of Klingon was not quite large enough to express the large number of objects normally found in the home: until the publication of an addendum to the standard Klingon dictionary, there was not even a word for "table" (now there is: raS). Some people even create constructed languages as a hobby in their spare time. 

    Something I suspect they have WAY TOO much of....

    copperhead

    Scoop's reply:

    You can find a rather lengthy discussion of this movie at Uncle Scoopy's Movie House, including two very informative links: (1) a very  thorough essay on the history of Esperanto in Cinema (2) a Slate Magazine article about the Incubus "curse".

    The movie even has some nudity (we reviewed the film in March, 2002). Ann Atmar.

     

    PIRATE COUNTDOWN:

    days left until International Talk Like a Pirate Day (Sept 19)

     

     

    MOVIE REVIEWS:

    Here 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 Lawdog or Junior or C2000 or Realist or ICMS or Mick Locke, or somebody else besides me)
    • If there is no asterisk, I wrote it, but am too ashamed to admit it.

    Graphic Response
    From the indie film "Swimming Pool" (2003)
    • Charlotte Rampling, the long time cult movie favorite still brave enough and hot enough to do full frontal nudity in her late 50's!
    • Ludivine Sagnier, the gorgeous young French actress goes topless

    Be sure to pay Graphic Response a visit at his website. www.graphic-barry.com.

    Dann
    'Caps and comments by Dann:

    "The Haunting of Morella"
    Nicole Eggert plays a dual role (mother and daughter) in this 1990 adaptation of an Edgar Allan Poe short story about a witch put to death in Colonial America who returns 17 years later searching for immortal life through the body of her daughter.

    Pretty cool witch movie, with some nice nudity. There were some lesbian overtones in the movie that I don't think came from Poe, but with Roger Corman as producer, that's understandable.

    It appears they used a body double for Nicole Eggert, as you never see her face and body at the same time.

    PAL
    Sydne Rome
    Karin Albin
    Mylne Demongeot


    From "Il faut vivre dangereusement" aka "One Must Live Dangerously". All 3 have some nice nude scenes, but according to PAL, the rest of the flick is terrible.


    Angelique Pettyjohn In topless scenes from "Heaven with a Gun" (1969).

    Irina Lackmann Excellent full frontal nudity by the German actress in scenes from "Kinderspiele".

    Romy Schneider Wet, and see-thru views in scenes from "Le Train" (1973).

    Oz
    'Caps and comments by Oz:

    "Convoy"
    There is a brief topless shot of Cassie Yates in Convoy and some see-though nipple exposure of Madge Sinclair. From the best nips in Hollywood, Ali MacGraw, there's some pokies.


    "Dunwich Horror"
    There's some topless views of Donna Baccala and some unknowns in Dunwich Horror and a brief upskirt of Joanne Moore Jordan. There's a brief nipple exposure by Sandra Dee (or a possible body double) but it is disguised a bit by the special effects used.


    "Dawg" aka "Bad Boy"
    No nudity in Dawg, the best we get is pokies by Elizabeth Hurley. However, lots of sexy shots of Mia Cottet, Brigitta Dau, Kim Pawlick and Maria Canals.


    "According to Spencer"
    It's the same story with According to Spencer. Marissa Ribisi and Precious Chong are supposed to star in a porn film and get down to very little. Brief pokies,and maybe a bit more, by Mia Kirshner.


    "Blood In Blood Out"
    A nice buxom woman goes topless in the Hispanic movie Blood In Blood Out. She may be able to be identified but I couldn't work out the accent and match her character name with those listed in the credits.

    • Unknown (1, 2)


    "Illegal in Blue"
    Plenty of nakedness in Illegal in Blue. Showing a nice set of nips is Stacey Dash, and Sandra Reinhardt is also topless. A couple of topless ladies also put on a bit of a display.

    • Stacey Dash (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
    • Sandra Reinhardt (1, 2, 3)
    • Unknown (1, 2, 3)

    Pat Reeder www.comedy-wire.com
    Pat's comments in yellow...

    From the New York Post Page 6 gossip section...

    STARS AT THEIR MOST OBNOXIOUS

    September 14, 2003 -- IF you've ever wondered who was the most boring, rude celebrity to meet, look no further. The unlucky souls who interview stars for a living and profile them for glossy magazines have shared with PAGE SIX their picks for Hollywood's worst. So as not to add to the jobless rolls, we're keeping the journos' names confidential.

    * Courtney Love: "She doesn't hear a word you are saying," said one celebrity interviewer. "She just rambles on and on, frothing like a mad cow, free-forming her way through her little crammed noggin."

    * Denise Richards: The pug-nosed actress and wife of Charlie Sheen is "as frightened as a deer in the headlights, and she loves using words like 'sun,' 'water,' 'ocean.' Over and over again."

    * Gwyneth Paltrow: America's favorite ice queen "just won't answer questions. She'll tell you stuff like, 'I don't like to talk to reporters,' and you are like, 'Well, then why are you here?' She won't tell you a thing and only wants to talk about her 'art' and has fake graciousness."

    * Jennifer Lopez: The diva who just postponed her wedding to Ben Affleck is just plain "dull. She is so boring. She arrived an hour late and said her favorite book was something like 'Meditations for Women Who Do Too Much.' She doesn't read, she doesn't watch TV or movies - nothing."

    * Hugh Jackman: "He's dull, but it's a studied dullness. He says right away, 'I am so boring,' but it's a ploy. He is just guarded, but it doesn't make for a good interview."

    * Gerard Depardieu: One celeb writer had to rush over to meet with the actor 21/2 hours early or forfeit the interview. "[Depardieu] weaves in and plops down in the chair in front of me," the writer recalls. "He is pale and sweating, his eyes are rolling in his head, his face looks like Silly Putty.

    "He is slurring-word drunk, but being Depardieu, his diction is perfect. He orders a half-bottle of wine for us. Throws it back like water. Talks for about 15 minutes about St. Augustin, the saint, not the town. Then he declares, 'I have to go to sleep now,' gets up and walks out."