Sunday, August 12, 2012

Pornonomy Reviews: Revenge of the Petites

Revenge of the Petites (2012)

Directed by:
Harry Sparks

Starring:
Ashley Jane
Cassandra Nix
Celeste Star
Dani Daniels
Hayden Hawkens
Heidi Hanson
Katie St. Ives
Leilani Leeanne
Marie McCray
Riley Reid
Sarah Shevon
Sativa Verte
Skin Diamond
Tia Cyrus
Vanessa Cage
Zoey Kush
James Deen
Kris Slater
Seth Dickens
Talon

After the Campus Cuties shitshow, it was refreshing to watch something that obviously had some consideration put into it. Both films focus on a girl going to college, and both use the main character's writing (a letter home in CC, a paper about the college experience here) to set up the film. And that's where the similarities end.

Revenge of the Petites cribs from Revenge of the Nerds (uh doy), Mean Girls, The House Bunny, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, American Pie, and Porky's. You can pretty much play '80s teen/college sex comedy bingo with it: evil Greek house, pranks, montages, bikini car wash! With the resurgeance of the porn parody, it's kind of pleasant to see something that exists as an homage, rather than a spoof. The lyrics in the original songs on the soundtrack seem tongue-in-cheek from time to time (whether the pastiche is '80s synth pop, ballad, or circa 2006 club banger), they never push into full-on DVDA territory.

The first 105 minutes or so is about as close to an all-girl film a non-all-girl film can get. Interestingly, that in and of itself strays from the sorts of films it was inspired by. Off the top of my head, I can't think of a sorority film that not only doesn't have a fraternity presence, but doesn't even mention fraternities. The few peripheral male characters don't really get into the action until the final 20 minutes (more on that later). Until that point, it's all character development, plot advancement, and Sapphic canoodling.

As previously mentioned, the film is set up by the main character Marie (McCray) forced to write a paper after missing a final exam. Conviently, her college experience has a pretty decent plot arc! So Marie goes to college, attempts to rush a sorority her mother warned her about, gets humiliated (along with her friend, Skin) by said sorority, ends up in an outcast sorority for tiny girls (the Petites), Petites are humiliated as a whole by the bitchy sorority, who exact revenge with the help of a disillusioned popular girl; the head of the popular sorority alienates most of the rest of her sorority who then all join the Petites, which, naturally, results in a bunch of two- and threesomes at the Petites house (and a threesome at the other sorority house for good measure), because...college. This part of the film was edited in the classic fashion of cycling through the simultaneously scenes (including one, between Celeste Star and Sative Verte, that included some of the most amusing dirty talk I've ever heard). It amounted to a pretty dizzying array of (seemingly real) female orgasms. Anyway, then there's the house vs. house bikini car wash showdown. Loser loses their house! Which house will come out on top? No spoilers here.

After the climactic car wash scene, Marie's paper is finished. It seems like a reasonable enough place to end, but instead the viewer is "treated" to four more happening-at-the-same-time scenes: Professors Deen and Shevon, Marie's mother Heidi and Marie's friend Kris, Marie and Seth, and Katie, Tia, and Coach Talon. On the one hand, it makes sense as the denouemont: each scene realizes a sexual tension from earlier (the teachers were plainly into each other - and had a bit of a dalliance at the car wash; Kris had a huge crush on Marie's mom; Marie and Seth were falling in love; Coach Talon and the girls...had to fuck, I guess). On the other, though, they feel bizarrely out of place. After nearly two hours focused primarily on the girls' pleasure, the film ends with four pop shots (three of which are facials).

Throughout much of the movie, I was wondering who, exactly, the target audience was. Couples, I guess. The cast was loaded with women (whose acting abilities were as varied as their pubic hair styles) that I'd wager average porn-watching heterosexual women would find attractive. Then, there were the guys. Deen and Slater are young and charismatic, so I'd assume they'd appeal to wives and girlfriends (the fact that Deen's popular enough to merit an ABC News feature seems to back that up). But Seth Dickens seems like a dopey cartoon sidekick (not the leading lady's love interest), and Talon looks like a 'roided out Steven Tyler/Bruce Jenner hybrid. Yikes. Anyway, to me, those final four pop shots felt like Harry Sparks was just about to call it a day when he remembered he forgot to show girls getting jizzed on, and that was his solution. It seems to me, if there was some facial quota to be met, there were places in the actual narrative to insert the scenes. But what do I know? I'm not a professional pornographer.

Like I mentioned in the review of The Smiths, since new movies aren't really my thing, it's not going to get a grade, but I can say that I quite enjoyed it. (And appreciated the fact that it wasn't five hours long; the bonus disc with extended scenes is fucking GENIUS.) One thing that I would have liked the film to explain the cultural bias against petite girls? I mean, everyone gets the bias against nerds: they're nerds! Also, at the beginning of the film, when Marie is measuring herself to see if she'd grown, she uses the same IKEA measuring spoon to gauge her vagina (?) that I use in my kitchen. Small world.

And now to read Gore-Gore Girl's thoughts, which I don't doubt will be better organized and stated. Well, that's what I get for not outlining or editing!

Pornonomy Reviews: Campus Cuties

Campus Cuties (1985)

Directed by:
Paul G. Vatelli

Starring:
Mauvais DeNoir
Nikki Charm
Summer Rose
Taija Rae
Tracey Adams
Buck Adams
Jesse Eastern
Kevin James
Rick Savage
Shone Taylor
Tom Byron


Per Gore-Gore Girl's suggestion, I decided to check out Revenge of the Petites*. Ten minutes into it, though, it just seemed too new for my first review in so long. There must be a back-to-school feeling in the air, because I dusted off Campus Cuties. Holy smokes, what a turd. It's been well over a month since I've watched a full adult film, and nearly 10 (!) since I've reviewed one, and somehow this is what I chose to re-start with. Yikes.

Briefly, the film is about a country girl (Charm) that leaves her family and boyfriend to attend college in the Big City. She makes friends quickly enough, and then...nothing really happens. There are about a half-dozen times that it seems like a plot is going to develop, and about forty ways off the top of my head that it could have been a pretty decent movie. Instead, you get dialog and acting that would be at home in a local used furniture store commercial, multiple examples of "how to give an uninspired blowjob", some of the worst and least necessary slow motion I've ever seen (limited to the final sex scene: Taylor/Adams/Byron), and - the only moderately interesting sex - Nikki Charm's somewhat impressive reverse cowgirl technique.

"Avoid at all costs" is a little harsh, so I guess I'll say "avoid at most costs." Unless you're really itching for college porn that feels like it was conceived, written, and half-filmed in about an hour by people whose ideas of college were gleaned from a handful of movies they didn't really pay attention to. D

* I will return to Revenge at some point. Soon, probably, to wash the taste of Campus Cuties out of my brain.

Friday, May 11, 2012

All quiet on the porn front

It seems like it's been a zillion years since I've had 80 minutes to watch a film (of the classic, adult variety). I'm going to try to rectify that this evening because I'm due a bit of relaxation. That said, I'm at a loss for *what* to watch, so I'm humbly requesting suggestions.

I've also got notes from "Her Wicked Ways" and "Daddy's Little Girls" that need to be hastily written into a review.

Friday, March 16, 2012

I'm Still Here

Guess what? When you get busy, watching and reviewing Golden Era porn sorta falls off the radar. That being said, I've been slowly rediscovering my...er..."passion" for good old '76-84 (ish on both ends).

When I do find time to watch some flicks (and 50 reviews is still my 2012 goal), this is going to be a place I can post some screencaps:

goldeneraxxx.tumblr.com

Sunday, January 1, 2012

And on to 2012

I rang in 2011 with the ludicrous idea of reviewing 100 films in a calendar year. I fell 58 short (I think; and even that is including a book review and a compilation of art films as individual pieces...). A year older and a year wiser, I know enough not to set a similar goal this year. Instead, I'm going to set the bar at one movie a week. I figure 50ish reviews is a reasonable claim.

Let's have at it!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pornonomy Reviews: Bubble Gum

Bubble Gum (1983)
aka The Siblings

Directed by:
Damon Christian

Starring:
Candy Cummings
Honey Wilder
Kelly Grant
Laurien Wilde
Blair Harris
Eric Edwards
Marc Wallice
Ray Wells

Bubble Gum clocks in at just over 60 minutes. I'm guessing the total production time - writing, filming, editing, and scoring - was about 75 minutes.

The story: Carla (Wilder) has been having a long term affair with Sid (Wells). Her husband, John (Edwards), hires a private investigator (Harris) who alerts him to the long-term affair. When their daughter Paula (Wilde) comes home with to tell her parents she's marrying Sid's son Sammy (Wallice), John decides to seduce Paula's friend Bubble Gum (Cummings) to get back at Carla.

Now, as you might have guessed from the "aka" up there, Sid is Paula's real father, meaning she's engaged to her half-brother. You'd think that this would be a shocking revelation at the climax of the film, but Carla actually tries to tell Sid that he's Paula's father in the film's second scene, but, unfortunately, since he already came, he's fallen asleep. ("Men!") Hilariously, not only does she not bother to wake him up, but she doesn't see fit to break the news to Paula after she announces that she and Sammy are engaged.

Oh, and also the maid, Darcy (Grant) - who is apparently dating the PI - knows but doesn't bother telling anyone. And then, the PI, after rushing to the house when he discovers that John isn't Paula's real father, decides that it's more important to have sex with the maid in the kitchen. Bear in mind everyone is home, so either the household is pretty fast and loose with the rules, or the maid isn't particularly concerned about keeping her job.

So finally John breaks the news to Paula at the dining room table, devastating her so she naturally runs upstairs to take a bubble bath.

Then DEUS EX MACHINA! Apparently Sid ISN'T Sammy's father (it may actually be John!) so...the wedding is back on. Or at least Sammy and Paula have (simulated) bubble bath sex set to a jaunty tune that would've been great for The Apple Dumpling Gang before abruptly cutting to a mournful piano tune playing under the rolling credits.

It's been awhile since I've hypothesized that a porn was fueled largely by cocaine, but I've got to wonder about this one. Interestingly here, though, it's the editor I suspect of being totally lit.

Editing aside, Bubble Gum didn't really do anything wrong, but it's one of those movies that, in retrospect, if I'd never seen it, I wouldn't have missed out on anything. C

Friday, October 21, 2011

Pornonomy Reviews: Titillation

Titillation (1982)

Directed by:
Damon Christian

Starring:
Gina Gianetti
Heaven St. John
Kitten Natividad (Non-sex)
Eric Edwards
Mike Horner
Randy West
Mike Zempter (Non-sex)

Titillation starts promising enough. A send-up of pulpy detective stories, a PI named Spado Zappo (Edwards) is contacted by millionaire Felix Fitzwilly's secretary, Brenda (St. John, an actress I was unfamiliar with, but who was such a solid actress that I - wrongly - assumed hers would be a non-sex role), to find the man's "Cinderella": a mysterious busty lass that fit a into a brozne bra he had in his possession.

In retrospect, I'm pretty sure my mind was wandering like crazy during the film, so while I can recall specific scenes, I can't really suss out how they all fit together. Here's the plot synopsis form Anonymous at IMDB:

"Brenda Weeks works for Felix Fitswilly, an old businessman who owns a large brass bra. Felix has already hired countless detectives to locate the woman he believes is finally buxom enough to fit into that bra. Brenda's husband "Rooster" cheats on her with his new neighbor while Brenda has to try hiring top private detectives Spado Zappo and Pigeon Johnson. Brenda offers her own buxom figure to Spado Zappo to accomplish that goal. Meanwhile, the searched woman turns out to be Jerri, a woman who turns down her chauffeur, prompting him to spike her drink and rape her. But when he plans to continue from behind even when she falls asleep, Pigeon Johnson who watches from outside decides to enter and chase him away. Brenda Weeks heads off home where she and "Rooster" prove they have an open marriage by seducing their other new and buxom neighbor into a threesome. Suspecting a scheme, the detectives break into Felix' office alongside a woman called Amanda. Spado Zappo leaves them waiting, in which time Amanda seduces Pigeon Johnson. In the end, each and every character turns out to be involved in their own scheme to get the money for finding the woman. Spado Zappo has everyone by gunpoint and tells Jerri to take her top off. The brass bra fits and she immediately agrees to become rich Felix' younger lover."

Reading that over kind of rings a bell, but it neglects to mention that "Rooster" and Brenda are also involved in managing a quasi-swingers apartment complex owned by Fitzwilly, and both are concerned about what will become of their roles there if the mystery tits are found. And [SPOILER], while Jerri does agree to go off with Fitzwilly, he not only denies the $50,000 reward to all of the people that are scheming to get the money, he actually offers $100,000 to anyone that can find him and Jerri after they skip the country. Other than leaving the film open to a sequel that (to my knowledge) was never made, there's no rational reason that, having the girl on his arm, he'd encourage this group of back-stabbers to try to hunt him down....

It's really too bad that a relatively interesting premise was allowed to go off the rails. It had elements of more successful detective parody/homage porns I've seen recently: the clever tongue-in-cheek voiceovers of Trashi; the whodunnit false starts of Lust on the Orient Express; the over-the-top double-crossing final scene of The Jade Falcon; but wasn't able to tie those elements into a particularly enjoyable narrative.

For some time now, I've had an idea percolating for a porn script. If I ever happen to write it, my follow up may well be a sequel to Titillation, because hopefully knowing what went wrong, I could write it right....

Since I'm feeling generous, I'll focus on what was good (the performances were all pretty solid, and the hardcore scenes were good to really good) instead of what wasn't, and give it a B-.