Slaves to the Underground (1997):

This is a story about the eternal love-triangle. A couple broke up because she was raped by one of the guy's friends, and she couldn't tell him or deal with it emotionally. She is a guitarist, wanders off into a band, and strikes up a sexual relationship with the lead singer. She realizes that she wants to go back to her boyfriend, but can't do it because she doesn't want to mess up the band, which is on the verge of breaking through.

Blah, blah, blah. Usual stuff. Nothing so new and different. Never would have caught any attention at all if the lead singer had been a man. But the lead singer is another woman.

If I were a 22 year old filmmaker today, I would make gay-themed movies. The reason is that you can take any old clichéd story that has been done a zillion times, and any old unoriginal dialogue, and make a movie which seems fresh to a built-in audience if you simply change the sex of one of the lovers. Then, instead of reviewers  saying, "This is the same old crap," they will say, "Breaks new ground in dealing honestly with same-sex relationships." The ides of showing gay characters doing the same old stuff as straight characters seems fresh because very few mainstream movies have treated gay characters without condescension or some kind of implicit understanding they they are out there doing some kooky, almost non-human stuff 24 hours a day.

Hey, gay filmmakers. If you have to re-hash the same old crap, why not do it with some great stuff? How about Casablanca. Just make Rick a tough-talkin' butch, and put in plenty of nude scenes, and you'll get my nine bucks. I recommend Laetitia Casta as Ilke and Hilary Swank as Rick. If you do a lesbian movie with plenty of nudity, hetero guys will watch it as well. That formula worked perfectly in this film. The two stars in this film got naked and looked great in the clinches. Molly Gross was a screen newcomer, with a kind of intense, confused charm, and quite a nice body. Marisa Ryan was a TV veteran. As a girl, she was one of the daughters on Major Dad. More recently, she was in that "Mary and Rhoda" reunion movie as Rhoda's daughter, if you were one of the three people who saw that. I found her a dubious casting choice as the lead singer because she can't carry a tune, but I guess it doesn't matter that much in grunge.

In fact, many reviewers praised this movie for an accurate portrayal of the grunge scene. I have to defer to their knowledge on that. This movie score is mostly just noise to me, a definite candidate for my least-favorite musical score in history. (But I still have to cast my vote for the all-Donovan 1960's hippie score in Zefferelli's Francis of Assisi, a story located 650 years before the hippies were spawned.)  Reviewers in the gay community also praised the accuracy of the lesbian politics in Slaves to the Underground.  Again, I must defer to their insider knowledge.

Setting aside the matters of accuracy and originality, I found this film to be pleasant enough as a bland romantic comedy with more nudity than usual, and I generally enjoyed it when there was no grunge music playing.

Here are some third-party film clips of Molly Gross and Marisa Ryan in Slaves to the Underground. (Four .avi's zipped together.)



I Capture the Castle (2003):

I Capture the Castle (Link goes to the Movie House Review) is basically the film equivalent of a romance novel. That's the bad news. The good news is that the filmmakers did a good job on it! I liked it fine, and Ebert gave it three and a half stars!







If you get this question right, you are a true pop culture vulture. Bob Saget. William Shatner. Jimmy Kimmel. Donny Osmond. Howie Mandel. What do these five men have in common? (Sorry, it's not that they're all douchebags. You need to be more specific.)

Martin Scorsese plans to take a break from Hollywood blockbusters and focus on the small-scale adaptation of a Japanese novel for his next work

Names of Satan, as mentioned in the bible

The Tigers have a long time to rest before the World Series.

The Good Wife's Guide

  • You ain't gonna believe the way we were in my youth. An actual 1955 article from a housekeeping-themed magazine.

The Device, a Patented Process-Indicating Apparatus

  • In Texas we often discuss "goat-roping." The expression has many different meanings, one of which is "doing something that makes your boss think you're busy, but actually serves no useful purpose." This device is a goat-roper's delight.

Tom Cruise Sues over Unauthorized Use of Image on Butt Plug

Dove Commercial Video which demonstrates that some foreign markets allow much riskier broadcast advertising than the USA

Weekend Box Office Results for October 13–15, 2006

  • The overall box office was very healthy compared to last year. It was up almost 40%.
  • The Gridge 2 petered out after an excellent Friday to finish below analysts' expectations. It is headed for a gross in the $50-60 range, which makes it a severe disappointment compared to its predecessor.
  • The Robin Williams movie did better than expected, thus justifying the studio's decision to market it as a zany comedy in the trailers and TV spots. (It isn't. It's a political thriller in which the main character is a comedian.)
  • The biblical epic called One Night With The King did twice as well as expected. Films marketed outside traditional media, particularly within the Christian or minority sub-cultures, often fool the experts. The niche marketing channels are obviously more effective than they are generally understood to be, and the analysts are still trying to get a handle on this.
  • Scorsese's The Departed, presumably buoyed by effusive reviews and good word-of-mouth, dropped only 30% in its second week, thus nearly hanging on to the top spot.
  • In contrast to Scorsese's endurance, the Chainsaw movie dropped about 60% from last week.
  • LIMITED (or trial) RUNS. Three true stories tested the waters. The second Capote film, Infamous, did very poorly in a 179-screen trial, averaging only $2400 per screen; the Idi Amin film scored a more encouraging $5900 per screen in its own trial run; the Queen Elizabeth film was the champion in this league, raking in an impressive $22000 per screen.

The complete 80-minute video of George Carlin Again! (Interesting to see how weird was his younger self.)

Jessica Delfino sings a happy song about her snatch

Worst Halloween Costume Ever - excepy maybe for the kid who came as Dick Cheney

Salman Rushdie remains untired critic of fundamentalist Islam

Disney reacts to character orgy video

URL says it all:

Vintage covers from 50s-60s Girlie Mags



Movie Reviews:

Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format. Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.


Cotton Mary (1999)

Cotton Mary (1999) is a Merchant-Ivory production set in the 1950's in formal colonial India. Its subject is the social status of Anglo-Indians, and the whites who chose to remain. When we meet Cotton Mary (Madjus Jaffrey), she works in the local British Hospital as a nurse's aide and prides herself on being half British. When a white woman (Greta Scacchi) gives birth to a sickly baby and can't nurse.  Scacchi is completely ineffectual, partially because her husband, a BBC correspondent, spends half of his energy philandering, and the other half chasing around after stories. Cotton Mary manages to find a wet nurse (her crippled sister) for the baby, and moves into Scacchi's household, seeing this as her chance to enter upper class British society.

Cotton Mary no sooner moves in than she starts trying to take over the household. Her main opponent is the butler who has been there forever and has been a best friend to Scacchi's young daughter. Mary finally gets rid of the butler, and begins bringing in her relatives to consolidate her power. However, when she brings her own daughter (Sakina Jaffrey), the girl ends up performing translation and more personal services for the Master. When he finds out through Mary's daughter that his own baby daughter has been sucking an Anglo-Indian tit, he goes postal, even though he has been doing the same thing. It is at this point that Mary's world crumbles.

For me, a film needs to have either a central character or a central theme that I can relate to. This had neither. Exploring foreign cultures is often a favorite film theme of mine, but this film failed in that regard, as it was too tightly focused on only a few characters, and none of those characters was appealing. Master was a philandering jerk who ignored his family; Scacchi played a wallflower too stupid to come out of the rain; and Cotton Mary was calculating and self-serving. The film is technically competent, and there is nothing wrong with the performances, but the concept is flawed.

IMDb readers say 5.1, with women over 40 giving it a little more credit. Ebert awarded two stars, a pretty typical critical response. It's a D+ on our scale - a film I should have liked, but didn't.


Greta Scacchi shows her left breast trying to nurse.
Sakina Jaffrey, doing her first nude scene, and with her mother watching, shows breasts.


The Romantic Englishwoman (1975)

This is a  French/English Comedy/Drama with Michael Caine as a British writer, and Glenda Jackson as his bored wife. As the film opens, she is off on holiday to Baden-Baden, whilst he stays home with their son and au pair. Caine is offered a job as a script writer, with a concept that at first bores him. It is to be about a woman who goes on holiday by herself to find herself. After he finds out that his wife met Helmut Berger in the hotel, he assumes she got lucky in Baden-Baden, takes the job, and starts patterning the screenplay after his own life. In an effort to learn the truth, he invites Helmut Berger over, and moves him in. He believes that Berger is a poet, but we know he is a heroin smuggler in big trouble for losing a shipment.

It is not until the end that we learn whether Jackson did have sex with Berger in Baden-Baden. By then, everything is out in the open, and Jackson leaves with Berger. That is not destined to last.

Glenda Jackson is the only member of parliament to have won two Oscars (A Touch of Class, Women in Love), as well as Emmys, Golden Globes and BAFTAs. Talk about an over-achiever... Despite her good performance, and two more from Caine and Berger, I was simply never involved in the story. Caine's character was too self-absorbed, Jackson's was not emotional enough, and Berger's was a creep. Even Jackson's kid was a brat, leaving absolutely nobody to root for. C- on our scale.

  • It is not available on Region 1 DVD.
  • There are no meaningful reviews available. 
  • 164 IMDb readers have this at 6.3.
Glenda Jackson does full frontal and rear nudity, assuredly making her the only current member of parliament to have done so.






Notes and collages


Tawny Kitaen in The Perils of Gwendolyn in the Land of the Yik-Yak. Ms. Kitaen was such the hottie when she made this film; the last police mug shot of her is a reality check...sigh

Sophia Loren in Boy on a Dolphin. I apologize for the graininess of this piece: at the moment it's the best I have to work with. Here is Sophia Loren, braless in a soaking wet dress; for us old-timers who could ask for anything more ...


Iresha, in Click. I dedicate this collage to all you people who have drifted your car on the road while trying to watch a female jogger on the sidewalk, myself included.

Mira Sorvino in Norma Jean and Marilyn. By the time Mira won the Oscar for her debut role in "Mighty Aphrodite," I respected the Academy Awards slightly less than the gum an eight year old sticks beneath a school desk.   Regardless of that, Mira threw herself into this role of Marilyn Monroe; she caught the whispery nature of Marilyn's voice: well done.

Madeleine Stowe in Short Cuts. great dimples


Madeline Smith in The Vampire Lovers. This pixie's skin is so pale it's pink; exquisite.


Barbie Benton in Deathstalker ... a decent sword & sorcery film; and then there is Barbi Benton having her flimsy gown ripped off of her ... thank you ...




Jane Birkin  in  Sept Morts Sur Ordonnance

Scoop's note: I have no reason to suspect that Melaninis is incorrect with this ID. Birkin is listed in the credits for this movie, and that does look like her. I do want to inject that neither Mr Skin nor The Bare Facts identifies this movie as having included any Birkin nudity. (Those guys cover just about everything, so that makes this an excellent find by Melaninis, if his ID is correct.)


Emmanuelle Seigner in Detective

I believe this was the first nude scene of her career.








Anna Friel flashes her panties.

Mel B (Scary Spice) in a semi-transparent top

Two women from Non commettere atti impuri  - Barbara Bouchet ...

... and Simonetta Stefanelli