Tag Archives: Oral sex

Linda Lovelace & Her Loops

11 Sep

For many, it started with one film, the film. Linda Lovelace was a no-one before Deep Throat, but upon its release, the whole world knew who she was. Yet what many don’t know is that Lovelace had quite a prolific career and gained a significant amount of notoriety by starring in a number of 8mm loops before going on to do the infamous feature. Shot in dirty motel rooms and sold underground or on the streets of New York, this is where her career in pornography, or her private hell as she referred to it later on in her life, began…

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The start of Linda’s pornographic career begins on a sunny Florida day in 1970. Linda Boreman (her real name) was staying at her parents, recovering from a bad car accident (which included a lacerated liver and a broken jaw, the scars of which were always cleverly hidden or as best as in her films and pictorials). Lounging outside the house in her bikini, Boreman was spotted by Chuck Traynor, a then bar owner and pimp who was driving past her family house. Approaching her, he offered her a joint and a ride in his car, and that was it. They became an inseparable couple and within a few weeks they had moved in together. She, by admission (a lot of which is in her first book Inside Linda Lovelace), knew nothing about sex, whilst Traynor was physically possessive, very rough and promised to use hypnotherapy on her to help her deep throat, a technique he’d taught her after studying it whilst in the Army. It seemed to ‘work’ and eventually Traynor was pimping Boreman out to customers in one of his clubs. In 1971, the couple married.

That year Traynor had an idea; he’d move them to New York City where he would try to sell Boreman’s skills and services to Xaveria Hollander, the famous author of The Happy Hooker and a successful call girl and brothel owner. After moving to New Jersey, Hollander turned her down, and so Traynor moved on to plan number two; loops.  Loops, also known as stag films or peeps, were short films shot on 8mm film cameras that were illegal and sometimes funded by the Mafia. They’d be shot in dingey, dirty apartments with an ‘anonymous’ cast and crew and were then usually sold privately or shown in peepshows.

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Above image courtesy of Eric Danville at The Complete Linda Lovelace

Chuck ended up meeting Bob Wolfe, a successful 8mm producer, and eventually introduced him to Linda. They started working together, using an apartment on 48th Street and a guy named Rob Everett as Linda’s partner, and Wolfe would wind up directing five of the eight loops she filmed (another one directed by Gerard Damiano and the other two by Traynor). The loops they shot are pretty impressive, and its very clear to see Boreman’s appeal. Not overly stunning but naturally pretty in a girl-next-door way, Boreman has charm and, more importantly, is really up for it. You can tell in her face and the way she moves that she’s enjoying what she’s doing and the girl really does have talent. after watching a few of them, it seems hardly surprising that Deep Throat happened when it did. If the film was never made, I think Linda would have eventually become famous anyway from escalating projects off the success of the loops. Initially the short films started out as basic hardcore loops, with Linda doing lesbian scenes and getting involved in a threesome. After a while, the content of the hardcore loops started to cater for more select fetishes. In one loop Traynor had Linda quite literally fuck a foot (which is actually rather impressive to watch and quite easy to find on the internet if you’re interested), whilst another was entitled Piss Orgy and the most infamous one involved a session between Linda and a dog, cryptically named D-1 and D-2 (but also known as the more convenient Dog Fucker and Dogorama). Need I say anymore. All were successful on the Manhattan 8mm scene with Dogorama released into some ‘raincoat theatres’ (porno cinemas) whilst the other loops were eventually released in cinemas as poorly edited compilations with titles such as The Confessions of Linda Lovelace and Linda Lovelace Meets Miss Jones (a film which spliced together scenes from another famous porno The Devil in Miss Jones).

In later years, Linda would completely denounce her career, saying she was forced into prostitution and pornography by Traynor and was, on occasions, held at gunpoint until she finished her work (the bestiality loop being one instance). On the other hand, Traynor has always said that he never forced her into anything, and that she was free to leave at any time. Even Everett and other people she had worked with in the past have said that she ‘loved’ what she did and was always willing to do anything (even Dogorama, with some internet rumours purporting that more than one bestiality loop was made) with none of them seeing any violence against her. It’s a very difficult side of the story to navigate, one that I might explore at another time…

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If vintage erotica interests you, or you’ve never seen Lovelace in anything prior to Deep Throat, her loops are well worth checking out. They’re available on most porn websites and are pretty much stag quality, i.e. grainy picture, jump cuts, blurry from wear on the film itself, however most videos seem to be a compilation of different scenes from different loops cut together (which tend to have an added soundtrack of 70s music so if you hear that you should instantly know you’ve got yourself a mixed video) so if you’re wanting to see a certain loop in its entirety, you may have to visit a few websites. That said, I’ve never seen D-1 or D-2 and don’t intend to so don’t ask for any advice one that one (The Foot or Open Pussy, Insert Foot isn’t that bad).

Traynor and Boreman would wind up meeting with loop director Gerard Damiano, who was at the time shooting a picture called Changes, through Linda’s loops. Damiano had seen a few and eventually directed Linda in one, which also starred future Deep Throat co-star Harry Reems. Damiano was already quite taken with Linda when they met and was also impressed by her skills and ended up writing a script for her. That script would go on to become Deep Throat and the rest, as they say, is history…

About Sex, But Not – ‘Shaun Of The Dead’ (2004)

30 Jul

ON THE SURFACE – Shaun must face up to his masculinity and restore his relationship with his girlfriend whilst dealing with the reanimated undead.

SCRAPING THE BARREL – Shaun must face up to his masculinity and realise that going down on his girlfriend Liz will not make him less of a man. Shaun of the Dead is about zombies? Oh no. Shaun of the Dead is about a guy who, after three years, will still not give his girlfriend oral sex for fear of losing his masculinity incase she prefers it to his penis. Yep, those aren’t hordes of zombies roaming the streets, it’s the male population that Shaun feels has become emasculated and is scared of becoming a part of. That strange virus that attacks people one by one, turning them into the undead is none other than a metaphor for those becoming sexually enlightened and active. Quite literally being bitten by the oral sex bug. No wonder his girlfriend gets fed up, there’s only so many blowjobs one can dish out before expecting, and wanting, something sweet in return (‘I want you to want to do it too’). I couldn’t last with that deal for three years and neither could Shaun’s ex who marvels at the fact that him and Liz are still together (‘Glad somebody made it.’). Especially with that stupid phobia of getting menstrual blood on his face. No Shaun, you haven’t got red on you, that is the worst excuse in the bloody book. Still, as they say, perseverance pays off and eventually Shaun realises that going down on Liz (going down into the Winchester’s cellar) isn’t a bad thing after all and can lead to a happy ending and relationship enlightenment (taking that little lift back up to the street pavement). If zombies can be sexually happy so can we…

Nightcall – Curt McDowell’s ‘Thundercrack!’ (1975)

30 Jun

Where does one begin with a film like Thundercrack!? In all honesty, I’m not quite sure where, because the film feels like a dense two-hour plus epic of bizarre proportions. Once seen, definitely never forgotten. Essentially Thundercrack! is an ‘old dark house’ horror story with a tonne of gratuitous hardcore sex scenes thrown in for, what feels like some very strange, fun. Directed by Curt McDowell and written by Mark Ellinger and George Kuchar (the well-known American underground and avant-garde filmmaker), the feature is beautifully shot in black and white with frames composed to highlight the physical and mental mess of the characters minds and lives. Mess I might add is a bit of an understatment.

This is an entry I’ll keep incredibly brief because the film is one that really has to be seen to be believed. Do you like weird, quirky, sexual films with a heavy B-movie aesthetic even though the flick is question is probably lower than B on the movie scale? Great! This one is definitely for you. With a varied amount of highly strung and very over the top characters (Mrs Gert Hammond in particular), weird-multi stranded narratives and enough sex to shake your stick at, you can see why this film is a bit of a cult favourite. Not to mention one that has been unavailable in parts of the world until late because of its content (lots and lots of lovely hardcore shots including vaginal penetration, anal penetration, sex toys, erections, masturbation, oral sex, ejaculation…). Throw in a generous dash of black humour (very fake flashbacks, paper sets, someone inadvertently masturbating someone else, an incident with a gorilla…) and you’ve got an unforgettable film that is well worth picking up.

Flavour Of The Week – Ilias Mylonakos’s ‘Emanuelle’s Sweet Revenge’ (1980)

30 May

Whilst the term ‘Never judge a book by its cover’ is a pretty solid and correct statement, sometimes I feel that it should really be ‘Don’t always judge a book by its cover but there may be one or two that you really should’. In this case, the latter statement can be quite easily applied to Ilias Mylonakos’s 1980 release Emanuelle’s Sweet Revenge aka Emanuelle’s Daughter (its actually Emanuelle’s step-daughter) aka Emanuelle, Queen Bitch (relatively accurate) aka Sexy Moon (just go straight to trading standards on this one, there is no moon…). What sounds like a sexy thriller is actually a wet blanket of a sexploitation film and one of the worst entries in the Black Emanuelle film franchise.

In fact, it’s slightly debatable whether or not it can be considered a Black Emanuelle film. Whilst it stars the always present Laura Gemser in the lead role, on a few occasions during the picture she is referred to as Emanuella and is married which seems completely out of character considering we all know what Emanuelle likes to get up to… Still, the film finds Emanuelle married to a really horrible, abusive older man who owns an orange factory. After being brutally assaulted by her husband and his co-workers, she persuades a stranger (through sex, obviously) to kill him and she eventually inherits his estate and becomes legal guardian to his moody teenage daughter Livia (Livia Russo).

Simple story which played out well could be full of erotic tension but instead plays out like a bloated village idiot trying to be sexy when everyone else is watching uncomfortably. The stranger Emanuelle hired to kill her husband follows her around and becomes interested in Livia, except that he has sex with pretty much every woman he meets. Not much tension going on there. Emanuelle gets it on with one of her late husbands friends in a rather predictable and very obvious piece of story development and everyone else wanders around trying to work out whether they signed up for a sleazy thriller or a piece of pure sleaze. Even the idea of Emanuelle trying to screw over her husband by selling off and changing his established business seems a bit silly, there’s not much punishment a dead man can get through that. There does, however, appear to be some potential audience tension in the fact that Russo looks incredibly young (we’re talking pre-pubescent) and her character appears topless, has a sex scene and gets raped. The version I have appears to be cut as none of this was present in the feature I watched but be warned if you buy this under a different title or uncut. The idea of watching what sounds like a young teenager getting exploited isn’t one that appeals much and one that I had hoped the Emanuelle series wouldn’t have stooped down to (then again, we do have the horse masturbation scene inEmanuelle in America…).

Extended sex scenes are great (and if its one thing this film has, it’s longer sex scenes than some others had at the time) but they ain’t so hot when you end up seeing some blokes squashed scrotum. The best revenge for that is avoiding this crap installment and seeking out the better Emanuellefilms instead.

‘Rivelazioni di uno psichiatra sul mondo perverso del sesso’ (1973) review

24 Feb

I love recommendations, the chance to seek and hunt out films that you may never have found for yourself (although I’m still wondering why so many people thought I’d like Island of Death, blatantly the goat scene…). So when the lovely folk at VTSS sent me the present of an Italian film to watch, I was more than happy to give it a go. And with a title like Revelations of a Psychiatrist in the World of Sexual Perversion, I really could not wait…

So attempt number one came and then went rather abruptly. You see, Revelations… isn’t really a film with a plot but more of a chronicle of sexual perversions with a documentary feel. The overarching story is that the cases of sexual perversion are being discussed by a lecturer and his group of students. He reads off examples of each case and classmates discuss and debate, more in the tone that you are watching small filmic vignettes of Krafft-Ebing’s seminal piece of work ‘Psychopathia Sexualis’.

You can, then, imagine the type of stuff the film focuses on. Witness some bizarre scenes, like the man who likes to act and be treated like a dog, his face in a muzzle, nuzzling up to some pretty epic displays of 1970’s pubic topiary, or the woman who rubs a huge plush donkey up and down herself whilst masturbating. Yes, just like in Emanuelle in America there is a scene involving bestiality but that finishes almost as soon as it starts and if you can bear that for the sake of the rest of the film, you’re in for a treat (this is where attempt number one to watch the film stopped for me, when you’ve spent a week accidently stumbling upon things whilst doing research on a documentary on zoophiles, even this scene – which is rather tame I can bloody assure you – was enough…).

The rest of the film then explores other scenarios, perversions and fetishes. In your typical exploitation way you’ve got some glorified rape and a rather long but pretty good orgy sequence with a tonne of hardcore shots and lots of ejaculation. Add to that some slightly humorous escapades of individuals who like the thought of ironing out the female form (yes, a man, a prostitute and an iron…) and being a train. All of this, and more, interspaced between some genuine musings from the studies of Krafft-Ebing, Jung and Freud make for a rather interesting watch…

God, I love presents.

Girl, You’ll Be A Woman Soon – Francis Giacobetti’s ‘Emmanuelle 2’ (1975)

23 Sep

Emmanuelle. One word that sends shivers down my spine, and not the orgasmic kind… Friends of mine and readers of this blog will already know that I hated Emmanuelle when I finally watched it. The French film, directed by Just Jaeckin, was a hit when released in 1974 and made European softcore porno-chic the next big thing, capitalizing on the success and popularity of Gerard Damiano’s Deep Throat, released in 1972. The pastel colouring, Victoriana interiors and soft lighting all present in the film became clichés that continue to influence softcore pornography even now and Emmanuelle’s personal quest of sexual discovery has continued to remain popular over the years. Much to everyone’s surprise, I couldn’t stand Jaeckin’s feature. I found Emmanuelle, as played by lead actress Sylvia Kristel, to be incredibly immature and unlikable, her sexual adventures to be embarrassing more than erotic and the whole film to be one long narrative on how you shouldn’t be having sex if you’re not ready for it. And yet, I kept thinking, there must be one Emmanuelle film out there I might like considering the first film spawned countless sequels and spinoffs…

Emmanuelle (Sylvia Kristel) and her husband Jean (Umberto Orsini)

Enter Emmanuelle 2. Released a year after the original film and directed by Francis Giacobetti, Emmanuelle 2 is essentially Emmanuelle all over again. Emmanuelle (Kristel) is traveling back to Hong Kong by ship to be with her husband Jean (Orsini) and on the way there has sex with a female stranger. When eventually in Hong Kong and reunited with Jean, she slips back into the expat lifestyle she enjoyed in the first film, which basically involves sleeping with her husband and with anyone else she fancies. Emmanuelle recounts various sexual experiences she has had throughout the film before seducing a young girl Anna Maria (Catherine Rivet) and getting her husband to take her virginity.

Emmanuelle and Anna Maria (Catherine Rivet)

Well, where do I begin? If you guessed that I hated it, then you guessed correctly. Emmanuelle 2 is just as boring and drawn out as the original. Kristel couldn’t act in the first one and she can’t act in this either. Whilst Emmanuelle doesn’t feel like an emotionally immature young girl in this one, she instead comes across as a selfish spoilt brat. I find Sylvia Kristel unattractive anyway but this characterisation makes watching her in the film unbearable. Umberto Orsini is somewhat more believable, and handsome, in the role of Jean but points go to Rivet. Her role as the inquisitive, shy virgin feels like the only genuine performance! Plus she’s also rather pretty to look at. The rest of the film just seems very bloated with some ridiculous scenes (Emmanuelle having a random orgasm whilst doing acupuncture on herself and a man watches her awkwardly) and terrible acting (the facial expressions of Kristel and Orsini are hilariously wooden, are you jealous of each other or getting off on what you’re doing, it feels like the former).

I dread, with all my heart, watching the third one.

‘Last House on the Left’ (1972) review

21 Sep

‘To avoid fainting keep repeating, it’s only a movie… only a movie… only a movie… only a movie’. If you’ve never seen Wes Craven’s 1972 horror film Last House on the Left, chances are you’ve heard of it or have at least heard the infamous tagline. Notorious upon release and hugely influential on the horror genre and exploitation film, Last House was the first feature written and directed by Craven (The Hills Have Eyes, Nightmare on Elm Street) and produced by Sean S. Cunningham (Friday the 13th).

Inspired by Ingmar Bergman’s The Virgin Spring (Jungfrukällan, 1960), the picture follows friends Mari and Phyllis who are on their way to a concert to celebrate Mari’s seventeenth birthday. On the way there they hear a radio report on a recent prison escape involving a group of sadistic rapists and murderers. After the concert and on the lookout to score, the girls befriend Junior, unbeknownst to them he is actually one of the prison escapees, who takes them to an apartment from which they will not return…

What ensue from here are repeated acts of sadistic and revengeful violence. Both Mari and Phyllis are sexually abused and raped and are eventually killed after being tortured by the gang. These scenes were problematic for the BBFC and upon its cinematic release in 1974 it was refused a certificate. When released uncut during the 1980s home video boom, the film found itself embroiled in the ‘video nasties’ debate and became banned. Over the next two decades the feature was refused a certificate unless certain cuts requested by the BBFC we made. It was eventually given an 18 certificate and released on DVD in the UK in 2003 after 31 seconds, including scenes of sexual violence, were cut. In March 2008, the BBFC finally classified the film uncut for video release.

Watching it now, with next year being its fortieth anniversary, Last House on the Left still packs a punch. In the wake of the ‘torture porn’ genre that has been quite dominant in horror over the past ten years, some of the gore and the violence may seem quite tame or inferior to an audience used to watching scenes that are a lot more graphic. However, the minimalist narrative and some great acting by the cast make for some really affecting scenes.

Sandra Peabody and Lucy Grantham are good as Mari and Phyllis respectively, with a few scenes that embellish their friendship acted out rather naturally. Fred J. Lincoln (Weasel), Jeramie Rain (Sadie) and Marc Sheffler (Junior) are all memorable as the escaped gang, each adding something different and unique to their characters sociopathic profiles. The weakest point, in my opinion, lies with Richard Towers and Cynthia Carr playing Mari’s parents. Compared to the rest of the cast, it feels like the two of them are holding something back, Carr in particular whose grief and desire for revenge only scarcely swims to the surface of her performance. The cast highlight is, without a doubt, David Hess as gang leader Krug. Entirely believable and revolting in his depiction of an abusing and manipulative father, the scenes in which his character’s sadistic behaviour really come into show feel genuinely played out, right down to his every smirk. Hess also wrote and performed the films soundtrack, often played as an ironic counterpart to the scenes being shown adding more malice to violence shown on screen.

In his book Nightmare Movies, Kim Newman eloquently sums up the general feeling that Craven creates within Last House on the Left, that ‘violence degrades everyone involved, victim and victimiser, just and unjust’. Mari’s parents become nothing more than Krug and his gang due to their lack of character development. Neither their grief nor their anger feels real enough, Carr and Towers bland portrayal of them as stock characters contrasting with the multi-faceted portrayals of the criminals means that their revenge lacks the momentum and impact that the girl’s deaths at the beginning have. In this sense, there is no pay off for Mari’s parents or the audience.

Last House has influenced films across the horror genre since its release, from revenge tales such as I Spit on Your Grave and Death Weekend to serial killer road movies like The Devil’s Rejects. Hess continued to reprise his Krug role in the decade Last House was released in similar imitations, most notably Hitch Hike (1976) and House at the Edge of the Park (1981), whilst the producer and director of the feature went on to become to heavyweights in the horror genre in the 1980s. Sean S. Cunningham would direct Friday the 13th in 1980, producing various entries in the franchise over the years, whilst Wes Craven would continue to write and direct other horror classics, kick start the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise and go on to satirise the genre and his career in the 1990s with the start of the Scream trilogy. With many films owing much to Last House on the Left, if you haven’t seen it yet, make sure it’s not that last horror film left on your list to watch…