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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

ULTRAMOD PORN FILM

Max Ultramod wrote a porn film yesterday. It took two and a half hours. If that seems quick, it is because the scenario was already devised by Max Ultramod's infrequent writing partner DM, with whom Max Ultramod wrote a Jim Holliday/Kylie Ireland sextravaganza quite a few years ago. DM sent the scenario, Max Ultramod filled in the dialogue, and the whole of it feels like some creepy Brazilian horror film from the 1960s. It's like José Mojica Marins turned to making Santeria-themed hardcore after completing his Coffin Joe films.

The plot details a young Spanish cad whose girlfriend kills herself after catching him in flagrante delicto with two other women, after which the cad is cursed by her demonic spirit. In the meanwhile, he is the subject of unwanted attention from an S&M bitch goddess who wishes to recruit him for her violent and powerful political cult.

DM and Max Ultramod wrote the script at the bequest of a famous adult film director, and so it looks likely to get made, and, hopefully, will lead to the opportunity to write more such films. It has been quite a few years since Max Ultramod indulged his considerable talents as a pornographer, and he finds that he enjoys it very much.

Max Ultramod will update this tale when appropriate.

CARTOON

Shoeshine cartoon

From Cavalier, March, 1962.

TRICKS

Tricks

By Renaud Camus, published by Ace Charter Books in 1981. From the back cover:

"Accurate … rapid … exciting … account of one night stands. The prose sketches out lots of particular details … marvelously well-intentioned." — Alan Ginsberg

Damned by faint praise from a beat poet, the book stands now as a document of a lifestyle that withered when the AIDS epidemic started.

Monday, January 30, 2006

PEEP WORLD

Peep World

On West 33rd Street in New York City, very near Madison Square Garden.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

BAWDY BALLDS & LUSTY LYRICS

Bawdy Ballads & Lusty Lyrics

From page 60:
In Atlanta it was Mabel,
In Mobile her name was Flo,
Cincinnati it was Dollie,
Betty Joe in Buffalo,
In old Philly it was Mary,
Down in Tampa it was Jean,
But on his expense account sheet,
It was "Meals and Gasoline."
Originally published in 1950. Republished by Pockets Books in 1970.

LYDIA - A COLLECTOR'S COLLECTOR

Lydia

A girl who collects bottles for their colors and shapes -- that's the sensitive hobby of Lydia Pearson.

From Cad Bizarre, September 1968.

SLEAZOID EXPRESS

Entry to the Roxie Theatre

Published by Fireside Books in 2002, Bill Landis and Michelle Clifford's Sleazoid Express is exactly what it's cover promises: A mind twisting tour through the grindhouse cinema of Times Square. The book was inspired by the author's identically titled magazine. In turn, the magazine was drawn from the authors' own experiences exploring and working in the dankest, most dangerous section of Times Square, a strip of 42nd Street called The Deuce, that was home to a series of ramshackle movie palaces that specialized in rough porn, Asian trash actioners, and ultraviolent horror films.

The book is less interesting for the once-obscure films it covers, most of which have found a new audience thanks to companies like Something Weird, than for its vivid description of the buildings and audiences along The Deuce. Sleazoid Express reveals a complex, quarrelsome, often criminal subculture of drug addicts, hustlers, pickpockets, and thrill-seekers who alternated between skulking around Times Square looking for victims, habituating (or performing in) live sex acts, and killing time at broken down theaters that showed films with titles like The Black Gestapo and Bloodthirsty Butchers. These grindhouse audiences were often more interesting than the movies they habituated, and sometime starred in. Sleazoid Express' authors reveal a thriving community of sex workers who flitted between hardcore porn, cheap exploitation films, acting in bit parts in vanguardist off-off-Broadway plays, and habituating Deuce theaters, sometimes lurking in the bathrooms seeking quick, filthy liaisons in stalls carpeted with urine-soaked newspapers.

It's a deranged portrait of a lost New York, replaced with tourist-friendly marquees promising theatrical adaptations of Disney films, and it's compelling reading. After all, what theaters nowadays risked having refrigerators hurtled at their screens if they quietly edited a few brazen scenes from a film, or risked audience violence when their chop-socky film inspired angel dust sniffing, karate-uniform clad regulars to try out some of their own improvised kung fu moves on their neighbors?

Beyond the criminality and violence, Sleazoid Express tells a forgotten tale of artistic inspiration, where the most exploitative films inspired the most marginal people to attempt to adapt their experience of cinema to their own lives. It was the perfect match of audience to film -- the book reveals that Deuce audiences were so taken with Karate star Sonny Chiba that they named their dime bags of pot after him, a name that has stuck. Filmmaker John Waters credits his time of stalking The Deuce with his own early, magnificently tasteless filmic experiences. The Wu Tang Clan took their name from martial arts films they enjoyed on Times Square when they were kids.

Critics dismissed the theaters, films, and audiences of The Deuce when it was thriving, but Times Square, the old Times Square, the filthy cesspool that provided Travis Bickle with fantasies of racist violence, had the last laugh. It's influence is woven into contemporary popular arts, far more so than many of Hollywood's best efforts from the era. As an example, Quentin Tarantino's entire career is arguably one long love-letter to the films of The Deuce, although his films never have honestly expressed the sort of demonic obsessiveness and tawdriness of the films that inspired him. His grindhhouse opera, Kill Bill, has many great qualities, but will never play to an audience of strung-out homosexual hustlers, switchblade carrying drag queens, pea-coat clad Popeyes, pot smoking inner-city teenagers, exhausted prostitutes, and petty pickpockets that a Deuce theater could provide. Kill Bill is a perfect grindhouse film, but it's perfect grindhouse audience is long gone.

Buy the book here.

40 GIANT NUDIST PHOTOS

40 Giant Nudist Paintings

Your money back if not delighted. Ad from 1968.

The cartoon cowboy seems delighted.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

DR. SEX

Artist and nude model

A scene from the 1964 nudie cutie Dr. Sex directed by trash auteur Ted Mikels and scripted by Wayne Rogers, best known as Trapper John from television's M*A*S*H. The film includes numerous bizarre sexual interludes, including a window dresser who believes his mannequins come to life as he undresses them and a house haunted by topless ghosts who dust and vacuum. In this scene, a beatnik artist poses a naked model against a red backdrop and has her hold a large wooden eating utensil -- ah, art!

Buy the film here.

DIRTY MOVIES: AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF THE STAG MOVIES 1915-1970

Topless victim of vikings

A clip from the 1970 stag movie In The Name of Odin, because there is not nearly enough Viking-themed porn.

Image from the book Dirty Movies: An Illustrated History of the Stag Film 1915-1970, published by Whirlwind Books, 1976.

But the book here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

TRASH: THE GRAPHIC GENIUS OF XPLOITATION MOVIE POSTERS

Hellls Belles

Too Young … Too Tough … Too Itching for Action to look for it. She'll make it where she is!

The poster for American Internation Pictures' 1969 release Hell's Belles, one of hundreds of such garish exploitation masterpieces collected by Jacques Boyreau for his book Trash: The Graphic Genius of Xploitation Movie Posters. Other posters include The Sadist ("Never Before a Motion Picture Rampacked with … SUSPENSE … TERROR … SUDDEN SHOCK") and Blood Thirsty Butchers ("Their prime cuts were curiously erotic … but thoroughly brutal!)

Buy the book here.

Monday, January 23, 2006

PACIFIC ISLAND GIRLS WANT MEN

Pacific Island Girls

Exotic, wholesome girls seek friends, romance, marriage. From the back pages of Inside Detective Magazine, 1982.

MASSAGE PARLOR GIRL

Massage Parlor Girl

Written by the Girl with the Golden Touch, Ellen Evans. Published in 1974 by Belmont Tower Books.

From page 96:
Alfred just sucked and sucked. You've seen kittens that have been taken from their mother before they were weaned? That was what Alfred reminded me of. All the time he was sucking he just kept his hands on both tits and his fingers were just working away. Kneading, like. He kept his eyes close. They all do.

VAMPYROS LESBOS

Vampiros Lesbos

1971 film by director Jesus Franco in which modern day vampires frolick in Istanbul. One, played by Soledad Miranda, performs naked at a nightclub, tans topless on the beach, and occasional chews on the necks of other women after seducing them. Aside from the famed beauty of its Portugese star, the film is most notable for its exotic easy listening soundtrack, composed in part by Franco.

Buy the film here.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

CARTY PARTY

Carty Party

Launching laugh-laden rockets loaded with laughing gas from his pad at the Space Sattelite Hotel.

From the back cover: Spinning in a 'world of his own' after "Blasting off" in his first StereODDITIES album, the nimble-minded comic of the Gold Coast invites you and your friends to join him by launching a "Carty Party" What a blast!

STRIPPERS SCHOOL BOOK

Strippers School Book

Confidential strip secrets.

Ad from the early Sixties.

MONDO CANE

Naked models painted blue

Models painted blue in the 1962 exploitation documentary Mondo Cane. They will soon rise and rub themselves against a canvas, creating a painting. Inspired by this sequence, Mondo-style shockumentaries often included scenes of beatnik artists coating topless females with expressive strokes of colors.

These later artistic undertakings were presumably all faked, but the Mondo Cane scene was the real thing. The artist was neo-dadaist Yves Klein, whose taste for a specific hue of blue was so pronounced that he patented it, and it is this blue (International Klein Blue, IKB, =PB29, =CI 77007) that coats his models in Mondo Cane. The resulting painting, "Suaire de Mondo Cane," now hangs at Minneapolis's famous Walker Art Center. Klein was reportedly humilaited by the film's use of his art; He died a few weeks after the film's debut of a heart attack.

Purchase the film here.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

THE SADIST AND THE HOSTAGES

The Sadist and the Hostages

An Eros Goldstripe publication from 1972, penned by Jack Warren. Adult reading.

From page 97:
And then, leaving the bottle stuck into her rectum, he adjusted his clothes and strode back to the farmhouse, feeling as never before a master of the universe, despot and tyrant over a helpless naked woman.

THE SEXIEST HOBO

The Sexiest Hobo

Blonde Barbara Rogers loves to run away from home and ride the rods dressed in her hot hobo suit!

In these secret photos taken -- by TABOO'S cameraman disguised as another hobo -- we see the loveliness of Miss Rogers revealed in all it's youthful glory!


From Taboo, Vol. 1, No. 3.

WILD CHERRY

Wild Cherry

"I knew one girl, she used to like to go get somebody [whose costume] had a lot of beads, and she’d cut just a few threads in the right place, and her whole costume went. It was destroyed. And those costumes cost a lot of money. Even if you did it yourself, the beads and stones and things cost a good bit of money. I had one gown I did myself, and it was $1000 in beads and stones." – Cherry Labrech

Burlesque artist. Read about her here.

Friday, January 20, 2006

A YOUTH IN BABYLON

Nature's Playmates

A Youth in Babylon is the gabby autobiography of producer/director David F. Friedman, whose ouvre in the Sixties and Seventies encompassed early exploitation (including nudist colony films such as 1962's Nature's Playmates, pictured above), incipient porn (including the genre called "Nudie Cuties," which Lewis and frequent collaborator Herschell Gordon Lewis essentially invented with The Adventures of Lucky Pierre), and the slasher film (which Friedman and Lewis also take credit for with Blood Feast.)

Lewis came from the oldest school of old school exploitation, having risen through the ranks of circus and movie press agents at a time when publicity involved planting hoax stories, burying performers alive, and dynamiting stunt men. Friedman was also linked to the 40 Thieves, a gang of independent film distributors, often with stolen films about venereal disease and childbirth, who traveled the country exhibiting their wares in tents. They cleverly avoided charges of indecency by claiming their films of diseased genitalia and live vaginal births were educational; they also cleverly fled town if the local constabulary grew too interested.

Friedman is famous for his taste for the alliteration and the language of carnival pitchmen, which crop up often in his films -- particularly in his self-written ads and movie one-sheets. As an example, an ad for Lucky Pierre reads, in all caps, "DELIGHTFUL, DELECTABLE, DESIRABLE, DELICIOUS DAMSELS DEVOID of any and all inhibitions." Friedman's book is often written the same way, giving a huckster's poetry to his tales of Hollywood's bottom tier. "The sixties were coming up hard on the outside," he writes at one point, "the era of permissiveness was just around the corner. I began thinking of new ways to cash in on the forthcoming cornucopia."

For anyone interested in the early days of adult filmmaking, or the development of the modern American horror film, or in getting a crash course in low-budget filmmaking that guarantees high returns, it's a tale worth reading.

Friedman ends the book with a promise of another to follow, but none ever did, and it's too bad, as he stops the book at the start of the Seventies, when his career was just heating up. After all, not only did he produce such softcore classics as The Erotic Adventures of Zorro and the notorious Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS, but he also cofounded the Pussycat Theater chain in Hollywood, a grand string of happily sleazy adult movie theaters across the West Coast at the dawn of hardcore porn. There's more stories in Friedman yet -- hopefully one day we'll hear them.

Buy the book here.

SHIM SHAM REVUE

Shim Sham Review

A collection of jazz standards performed by New Orleans' drummer Ronnie Magri and a tight combo he put together for the short-lived Shim Sham Revue burlesque revival in the Crescent City (Magri and his combo also played for the more recent Bustout Burlesque). The selection is generally excellent -- slightly sexed up versions of "Moonglow" and "Mood Indigo," without the sort of bump and grind orchestration that typifies burlesque music. Magri instead relies on the original, essential sultriness of the songs, and they work well this way. Even without the visual stimulation of female pulchritude, the CD has an urbane, teasing quality that's damned erotic.

The recording's one failing is a cover of Big Maybelle's "One Monkey Don't Stop No Show" by singer Marci Hesseling. While the song itself is terrific, the singer is not up to the task, sounding less like a period blues singer than like the sort of brassy rock and roll belter that can be found on Bourbon Street any day of the week howling her way through Janis Joplin covers. One monkey might not stop no show, but one misplaced rock shouter sure can kill a romantic mood.

Buy it here.

ARTOONS

Artoons

The kind we all like to see. Circa 1962 or therabouts.

THE ROTTEN COCKSUCKER'S BALL

The Clovers

We don't need no god damned taxi fair
We're going to trim those hoes in a rocking chair
Take off all their rags.
We're going to play a little game call tag
Tomorrow night at the rotten cock sucker's ball

-- The Clovers

Download here.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

THE LUST TRAVELERS

Lust Travelers

From the back cover of The Lust Travelers, an adults only novel by Don Banser from 1966:
Sin on the run...

two studs with a past. they were constantly on the go, except when they would settle on a temporary nest of lust, which was always available to this pair of virile lady-lovers, and they were never too busy to stop and tarry with over-sexed females who loved their loving...the wilder, the better, even to orgiastic sex-wild, ways...where the flesh is willing and the 'no' is weak. A wild, tumbling...

Lust Spin
Sale to Minors Forbidden.

NECROMANIA: A TALE OF WEIRD LOVE

Necromania

Here it is, in all its tacky Seventies glory: The lost film of schlock auteur Ed Wood, Necromania, shot in three days for $7,000, featuring a coffin owned by fraud psychic Criswell, and notorious for going missing just a few days after the shooting was finished.

Thanks to the investigative work of a pair of Ed Wood enthusiasts who discovered the film in a Los Angeles warehouse, Necromania is finally available to the public. For anyone familiar with the career of Mr. Wood, including his deterioriation into alcoholism and cheap pornography during the later years of his life, the film will come as no surprise. It's a flat, incomprehensible mess, albeit a strangely entertaining one. Necromania tells of a supernatural cult at a Hollywood Hills mansion whose rituals are supposed to cure marital problems, and do, if lethargic onscreen coupling can be considered a "cure."

Ed Wood once again seems to be working out his personal demons, which were legion, through the dual metaphors of horror and pornography, both of which were lifelong interests. However, in classic Wood form, the horror isn't especially horrifying and the pornography is downright saltpeterish.

The film does have its little pleasures, though, including an interior design scheme that must rank among the greatest examples of early Seventies kitsch. For instance, a bedroom sports a matress covered in a massive, bright yellow shag blanket -- the bedcover actually earned an applause at the film's debut at One Eyed Jack's in New Orleans last year. However, typical of Wood's genius for missed opportunities, no female is ever shown unclad atop this wooly monstrosity -- by the time the bed is used for conjugal purposes, the blanket has been unceremoniously tossed aside.

A pity. After all, in a film titled "A Tale of Weird Love," what would have been stranger than a lovemaking scene atop what looked like the skin of a Sesame Street character?

Purchase the film here.If you dare.

TIJUANA BIBLES

Popeye?

Admit it, you've always wanted to see William Powell and Myrna Loy from The Thin Man getting it on. You've wondered about the oral prowess of baseball great Lou Gehrig (before his fatal disease, of course). You've long wondered what Betty Boop would look like with her flapper outfits off, and you've stayed up late fantasizing about the amarous activites of the Fuller Brush Man. So have we all.

Thankfully, for a few decades in the middle 20th century, a number of anonymous, enterprising, and supremely unskilled artists put their questionable talents toward just those fantasies. They created a series of short, illegal, and very underground cartoons known as Tijuana Bibles.

Simon & Schuster, usually a reputable firm, released an entire book of these pornographic funny pages back in 1997. It's still worth checking out. After all, where else are you going to be able to catch Dagwood and Blondie in flagrante delicto on one page while finding Popeye, Wimpy, and Olive Oyle exploring the mysteries of the menage a trois on another? Not in your Sunday papers, that's for sure!

Buy it here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

TAKE IT OFF! STRIP TEASE CLASSICS

Helen Lovett

This Rhino CD is mostly a compilation of two Sonny Lester LPs from the early sixties released as mock instructional albums titled How to Strip For Your Husband. The music is the sort of steamy bump-and-grind numbers you would associate with burlesque palaces. In fact, as an additional track, the CD includes Billy Rose's "The Stripper," the song most associated with classic dances performed by top-heavy females in pasties and a g-string.

These brassy numbers weren't really right for women looking to enject a little sauciness into their marriage. They're so brassy as to sound like satire, which, in the case of Lester's music, they were. Lester's inspiration for releasing albums of at-home striping songs came from a succesful routine from his stage act, a comical skit also titled "How to Strip for Your Husband." Nonetheless, his recordings are great, sleazy lounge songs, filled with Latin beats, slurring orchestration, and sudden drum fills that sound just right for an unexpected thrust of the hips or twirl of a tassle.

Buy it here.

CARNIVAL STRIPPERS

Carnival Strippers

Photographer Susan Meiselas, author of Carnival Strippers, befriended a carnival stripper troupe for three years beginning in 1972. These women took their chance to escape domesticity by joining the carnival as strippers. Meiselas took it upon herself to document it.

Meiselas's photos are black and white and grainy, but the subject matter is quite clear: sex. And neither Meiselas nor the strippers are shy about it. The author's lens captures strippers sitting casually backstage before they perform. The photos show them chatting or catching a quick snooze while sitting naked and wide-legged in medal folding chairs. More shocking, however, are the photos of these strippers on stage and how they interact with their audiences. Meiselas gets almost as close to the strippers audience members -- some of whom pay extra to bury their faces between a stripper's legs.

But this book here.

TEN STAG MOVIE SUBJECTS

Stag Movie Ad

You must be delighted. You must be thrilled.

From 1962.

THE DEADLY NUDE

The Deadly Nude

From the back cover: "Take some pornographic pictures, add a nymphomaniac with a jealous husband, throw in a red-headed stripper with strange and exotic tastes -- and you've got a mixture hot enough to melt the tail off a brass monkey!"

MARISA MELL

Marisa Mell

You may not recognize Marisa Mell, but she's worth knowing. She is, after all, the Austrian beauty who costarred with John Phillip Law in 1968's Danger: Diabolik, a film that functions as pure pornography if you're obsessed with Sixties mod design. Mell and Law sashay around an unnamed European city in tight black clothes and oversized sunglasses, thieving gold from the government and jewels from the very wealthy. They then race their Jaguar back to their futuristic underground lair in order to make love beneath piles of money on a rotating circular bed.

Were this a Bond film, Diabolik would be the villain, and it is 007 who would enjoy the amorous embraces of the stunning Marisa Mell. However, this is not a Bond film, and thank goodness. Diabolik is gleefully immoral, and, with his pixie haricut and arch eyebrows, he sports the perfect Sixties profile. He drives an enviable car, has a wonderfully malicious sense of humor, and dotes on Marisa Mell. In the meanwhile, she never completely disrobes in this film -- director Mario Bava's one failing, corrected here.

Buy a copy here.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

THE GROUPIES

The Groupies Front Cover

The Groupies Back Cover

This is the notorious album, excerpted as part of the 365 Days Project and sampled heavily by Pizzicato Five in their song "I'm a Groupie." Purportedly edited (in stereo!) from an actual series of interviews with groupies from New York's Greenwich Village music scene, circa late '60s. The girls interviewed are young (they seem disgusted by groupies in their mid-20s, who they call "old"), and easy -- and willing -- prey for any swaggering rocker that comes along.

It's not quite what you would expect -- sometimes the girl's experience slips into tragedy, as when one of them describes a beating at the hands of a lover. But for those looking for a peek into the wild nights of the Age of Aquarius, this is it, raw and uncensored.

Note: A reader pointed out this terrific site, which is likely the source of the original MP3s, and is worth checking out for their general excellence.

Monday, January 16, 2006

HOLLYWOOD NUDES IN 3-D!

Bettie Page

Film funnyman Harold Lloyd spent the large part of his later years doing what any of us would, really, if we had the time and money: He invited a series of gorgeous Hollywood honeys to his luxurious mansion, convinced them to peel off their clothes, and snapped photos of them, many in 3D. (Included among these was none other than Bettie Page, pictured above.)

Harold Lloyd's Hollywood Nudes in 3-D! collects a relatively small -- but nonetheless greatly appreciated -- sampling of these images. They're kitsch, to be certain: He photographs one model, drenched in blood, being attacked by a tiger rug; another has a model in a tutu menaced by a red-clad, drinning, white-faced devil. But the women are glorious creatures, and Lloyd's camera caresses their nubile bodies. Reportedly Lloyd was a perfect gentleman, and this was the only caressing that went on; one prefers not to believe it.

Purchase the book here.

2069: A SEX ODYSSEY

2069 A Sex Odyssey

Properly speaking, this West German film from 1974 is called Ach jodel mir noch einen, which translates, roughly, as Oh, Yodel to Me Still One. It's also sometimes called Stoßtrupp Venus bläst zum Angriff, which, even more roughly, translates as Combat patrol Venus blows to the attack. Either of these would be terrific names, but it came to the United States as 2069: A Sex Odyssey, and so we're stuck with it.

This is a puzzling, if frequently entertaining, nudie-cutie in which a half-dozen comely space maidens descend on a snowy German villa in which all the men seem to still wear lederhosen. The extraterrestrials perform some sexual experiments on the natives, which is done in a Benny Hill-style of slapstick, and then the alien women settle down with the locals and have babies. The end.

This irresistable classic can be ordered here.