Tuesday, March 14, 2023

B.o.Y.: The Women of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, Part X – "Gina Dair"

"Using unknowns you avoid highly exaggerated salaries and prima donnas."
To more or less repeat what we have written in all previous entries of out multi-part Babe of Yesteryear review of the babes of Russ Meyer's Beyond the Valley of the Dolls:
Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, Russ Meyer's baroque masterpiece from 1970, one of the only two movies he made for a major Hollywood studio (in this case, Fox), is without a doubt one of the Babest movies ever made. While we have yet to review it here at a wasted life (if we did, we would foam at the mouth in raging rave), we have looked at it before: back in 2011, in our R.I.P. Career Review of Charles Napier (12 Apr 1936 – 5 Oct 2011), and again in 2013 in our R.I.P. Career Review of the Great Haji (24 Jan 1946 – 10 Aug 2013) — both appear in the film.
"This is not a sequel. There has never been anything like it!"
Advertisement tagline
In Haji's entry, among other things we wrote: "Originally intended as a sequel to the 1967 movie version of Jacqueline Susann's novel Valley of the Dolls (trailer), Meyer and co-screenwriter Roger Ebert instead made a Pop Art exploitation satire of the conventions of the modern Hollywood melodrama, written in sarcasm but played straight, complete with a 'moralistic' ending that owes its inspiration to the Manson-inspired murder of Sharon Tate and her guests on August 9, 1969. Aside from the movie's absolutely insane plot, the cinematography is also noteworthy — as are the figures of the pneumatic babes that populate the entire movie. For legal reasons, the film starts with the following disclaimer: 'The film you are about to see in not a sequel to Valley of the Dolls. It is wholly original and bears no relationship to real persons, living or dead. It does, like Valley of the Dolls, deal with the oft-times nightmare world of show business but in a different time and context.' [...]"
"Any movie that Jacqueline Susann thinks would damage her reputation as a writer cannot be all bad.
Russ Meyer films are always populated by amazing sights, but this one literally overflows its cups in an excess of pulchritude that (even if somewhat more demurely covered than in most of his films) lights the fires of any person attracted to women of the curvaceous kind that preceded today's sculptured plasticity.  And so we are taking an extended look at the bodies film careers of the women of the Babest Film of All Times, Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. The size of their breasts roles is of lesser importance than the simple fact that they are known to be in the film – somewhere.
In any event, to date Babes of Yesteryear has looked deep into the cleavages film careers of the various females known to be in the movie, although one or two might barely register. They were all date material (barring, perhaps, the woman that ended up murdering one husband and tried to do away with the second). So far, we have looked at:
Part I (June 2022), The Non-babe of Note of BVD:
Part II (July 2022), Background Babe of BVD:
Part III (Aug 2022), Background Babe of BVD:
Part IV (Sept 2022), Background Babe of BVD:
Part V (Oct 2022), Babe of BVD:
Part VI (Nov 2022), Babe of BVD:
Part VI (Dec 2022), Killer Babe of BVD:
Part VII (Jan 2023), Background Babe of BVD:
Part VIII (Feb 2023), Background Babes of BVD:

"Gina Dair"
But to continue at the task at hand: The July 1970 issue of Playboy did a pictorial cum article on Beyond the Valley of the Dolls that features the assets of a few women who are said to be in the film but appear on no credit list that we could locate anywhere. We imagine that, much like the American National Treasure Pam Grier, they were hired to fill the background and not a part, and thus have remained overlooked if not also forgotten.
Gina Dair is one such woman. She is in the Playboy pictorial twice but is not credited in the film and is both long overlooked and forgotten — for that, however, she is nevertheless still highly visible: while a quick and easy search online reveals virtually nothing about Gina Dair, a quick and easy search nevertheless finds a lot of Gina Dair. Throughout the late 60s and early 70s she was a regular nude model in diverse men's magazines, and a simple image search brings up a lot of those photos. And the photos reveal that Gina, "one of the best-paid nude models on the West Coast", according to Playboy, had a killer body with perfect half-cantaloupes and a penchant for bad wigs and/or a lot of hairspray.
The Playboy article also says she is Hawaiian, a biographical fact that is semi-true (she lives there, but was born in Pennsylvania), unlike another "biographical fact" found online: here at a wasted life, we can say with certainty that despite what finds online, this Gina Dair was not the wife of the actor John Dair (3 Mar 1933 – 25 Nov 2005). Why? Well, to offer just a few reasons: 1). He, like his wife, was from the wrong continent; 2). His wife, "Gina Dair" (1925 – 2013), a.k.a. Georgina Stewart Lowe Dair, whom he married in 1957, was already too old to do pin-ups when this Gina was active; 3). John and Gina got married when Gina the Model was around nine years old; 4). Gina Dair the wife is deceased, while "Gina Dair" the nude model is not; and 5). "Gina Dair" the nude model is not even really "Gina Dair". "Gina Dair" is simply the most common pseudonym of a "showgirl-dancer-model-actress" who also sometimes went by the names of Gina Dare, Trixie Parrish, Barbara Lang and Blanche Cain (if not other names we haven't located).
So who was/is "Gina Dair"? As ancestry.com reveals, Gina Dair, born 1947,* was/is actually the "showgirl-dancer-model-actress" Roberta "Bobbie" [a.k.a. Bobbi] Grumley, who once upon a time went to Burbank High School (that's her in the photo above, front row second from the left). As explained by a request for a "Name Merger" at the imdb (which, oddly enough, was rejected despite all the proof submitted): "[...] Gina Dair was the stage name of Roberta ('Bobbi' or 'Bobbie') Grumley, who was a dancer, showgirl, pinup model, and actress in bit parts in movies. She lived in Burbank, Los Angeles, Reno, and Las Vegas. Her sister was Jacqulin Cole (deceased), who was married to film director Greydon Clark. The sisters Jackie and Bobbie were in a couple movies together. [...]" Among other movies they were in together, of course, is Beyond the Valley of the Dolls: we look at Jacqulin Cole back in July 2022 in Part II of this Babe of Yesteryear series.
* This is a mistake. Jacqulin Cole, who graduated from Burbank High in 1965 as Jackie Grumley, was born in 1947. Her sister, Bobbi, graduated a year later; logic would say that she was born after her older sister, possibly 1948...
In any event, "Gina Dair" is currently alive and well and enjoying the sun in the same state as Neola Graef, whom we doubt she knows. Below are the films that the semi-dedicated research at a wasted life has shown Dair/Grumley to have possibly appeared in or worked on, if only for a few seconds. If you know more titles, please let us know.
West Side Story
(1961, dir. Jerome Robbins & Robert Wise)
According to the imdb, Bobbie Grumley (a.k.a. Gina Dair) appears in this film un-credited as a dancer. If so, she would have been about 13 at the time. We've watched this film more than once, not by choice, and hated it every time. Remade, for no discernible reason, in 2021 (trailer) — we definitely don't plan to watch that version. Director Robert Wise (10 Sep 1914 – 14 Sep 2005), in any event, made better movies than this one, like: The Andromeda Strain (1971 / trailer), The Sound of Music (1965 / trailer), The Haunting (1963 / trailer), or The Body Snatcher (1945 / trailer).
West Side Story:
The plot, from 2,500 Movie Challenge: "Two rival New York street gangs, The Jets (whites) and The Sharks (Puerto Ricans), are preparing to face off against each other. Riff (Russ Tamblyn of Dracula vs. Frankenstein [1971]), leader of the Jets, recruits his best friend (and former Jet) Tony (Richard Beymer of Home the Horror Story [2000 / trailer] and Silent Night, Deadly Night 3: Better Watch Out [1989 / trailer]) to help in the upcoming rumble. The problem is, Tony has fallen in love with Maria (Natalie Wood [20 Jul 1938 – 29 Nov 1981]), the sister of Bernardo (George Chakiris), leader of the Sharks. Hoping to prevent the two gangs from fighting, Tony is instead drawn into a confrontation that takes a disastrous turn, threatening to destroy his budding romance before it ever gets off the ground. Yet Tony and Maria can't ignore their love for one another, and, despite the opposition of those closest to them, search desperately for a way to be together."
The Head Mistress
(1968, dir. B. Ron Elliot a.k.a. Byron Elliott Mabe)
We already looked at this film in BVD: Samantha Scott; Scott, the "killer chick" of BVD, is credited as "Sarah Stunning" in The Head Mistress.
Whom Gina Dair plays, or who she is credited as, in The Head Mistress we know not, but diverse sources says she's in the film. Over at Vintage Erotica, for example, Beutelwolf says, "The only movie role [of hers] I know of is in Head Mistress. [...] She's fake credited there, as are nearly all the performers in Dave Friedman movies of that vintage. (He says on one of his SWV commentary tracks that he made up goofy names for actors in order to avoid creating stars who might want more money next time.)"* Beutelwolf gets his info from Best for Men #40 – Starlet Special: "Gina Dair (appearing in nudie movie The Head Mistress) has big 10-pg feature in a true-color CF. [River of Filth]"
* Re: The Russ Meyer quote at the top of the page, "Using unknowns you avoid highly exaggerated salaries and prima donnas."
At BoY-BVD: Samantha Scott, we mentioned: "The Head Mistress (1968) is a low-budget, independent sexploitation film written and produced by David F. Friedman and directed by Byron Mabe [10 Apr 1932 – 13 May 2001]. It stars Marsha Jordan, Victor Brandt, and Julia Blackburn. [...] Part of a series of colorful costume dramas Friedman wrote based on literary sources. The story, set in 17th-century Italy, is [supposedly] based on two stories from Boccaccio's The Decameron.* Filmed in and around an elegant Medieval-style mansion in the Hollywood hills. Marsha Jordan, one of the biggest stars of the exploitation genre, plays the lesbian mistress of a girl's school. Features the usual Friedman ingredients: [lots of] lesbianism, nudity, simulated sex, flagellation, and risqué humor. [Internet Archives, whence we found the trailer below.]"
* For a far more "literary" adaptation of the "masterpiece of classical early Italian prose", dare we suggest Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Decameron (1971 / trailer)?
Trailer to
The Head Mistress:
DVD Drive-in has the plot: "Blond and busty Marsha Jordan,* one of the top sexploitation starlets of the 60s, plays the director at a school of virgins in 17th century Italy [credited] as 'Vanessa Van Dyke'. When the old gardener (Ray Sebastian [?] as 'Micro Cosim') of the school retires, a young stud named Mario (Victor Brandt, of Neon Maniacs [1986 / trailer] as 'Barry Cobbler') takes over his job by pretending to be mute and dumb. Mario bangs most of the girls (who mainly sit around having nude picnics). Marsha catches one of the girls (Gee Gentell [as 'Malinda Malice']) with Mario, so she whips her and proceeds to make love to her. Afterwards, Marsha explains to the bewildered girl why she is now a lesbian in a sequence explained as a flashback. Before working at the school, she was madly in love with a young man [John Tull, un-credited]. While making out with him in a field one night, a pair of cretins lops off her lover's head and buries it in the mud. They then rape Marsha in her bedroom (well, one guy fondles her torso while the other sucks on her feet), and then exit the room without ever removing their pants. Marsha digs up her lover's skull and plants it in a flower pot by her bed. The vines from the plant 'arise' to fornicate with Marsha's supple breasts and then smother the two dopes when they try to re-bury the skull! [...]"
As to be expected, Mario eventually rapes the Headmistress and he's such a stud that she goes straight again and they live happily ever after. (Considering the final scene in which a variety of pregnant students leave the school, the fertile Mario definitely lived happily ever after.)
* Considering how major of a presence Marsha Jordan, "the First Lady of Sexploitation", was in her day, and the number of film projects she took part in and personalities she worked with, she remains an oddly elusive figure and has seemingly never been interviewed. And that despite the fact that Marcia Jordan Moore is relatively easy of locate, living so rural that it could be a setting for a horror film.
Marsha Jordon lounging:
[...] As Video Zeta One points out, the movie is just "Another David F. Friedman sexploitation flick featuring Marsha Jordan, a vengeful house plant, a rapist fake mute, Samantha Scott, decapitation, surprise necrophilia, erotic whippings, and two bathtub scenes. [...] Points for gobs of nudity, but even more points for unparalleled weirdness. The vengeful houseplant scene alone makes this worthwhile. Add in the wildly bizarre necrophilia and you have yourself a curiosity worth watching."
The Head Mistress got the tabloid treatment when it came out: 64 pages, 12 pages in color. "It tells the story of the film and presents photo stills from all the scenes that are described. At the end is a 12-page 'behind the scenes' section about the making of the movie."
The advert of the film above is from The LA Times (10 May 1968). At least at the Gala Drive-in in Akron, Ohio, and the Blue Sky Drive-in in Wadsworth, Ohio, The Head Mistress was part of a fun triple feature: She Freak (1967 / trailer below) is Byron Mabe's own sleazy remake of Tod Browning's Freaks (1932 / trailer), while The Penthouse (1967 / trailer) is a British "talky psychos terrorizing innocent people in an environment they can't escape" flick.
Trailer to
She Freak:
We wouldn't be surprised if Gina Dair is found in other David F. Friedman projects, as he was always in need of photogenic women willing to appear nude, but if so, who knows under what name(s) she is even credited as.
The Love God?
(1969, writ. & dir. Nat Hiken)
"If you love your country, you'll publish a filthy magazine."
Atty. Gen. Frederick Snow (Herb Voland)
Returning to the July 1970 Playboy pictorial on the women of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, beneath the photo of Dair and her pencil-test-passing breasts, they note: "Miss Dair's last film role was opposite Don Knotts in The Love God, a tepid comedy about a girlie magazine publisher who's still a virgin." (That Playboy did not like the film is perhaps inevitable because, as Life Between Frames points out, the film is based on the idea of "What if Hugh Hefner was [sic] really Don Knotts?") Ms. Dair's part was/is obviously negligible at best, as she appears on no cast list anywhere that we could find.
"The public wants sex, sex, and more sex."
Lisa LaMonica (Anne Francis)
Written and directed by workaholic Nat Hiken (23 Jun 1914 – 7 Dec 1968), he was dead of a heart attack by the time the film was released. The Love God? was Don Knotts' attempt to break away from his family-film typecasting, and while highly dated it remains oddly funny even today. Somewhat a bomb in its day, some people consider it one of his best films (see the Trailer from Hell below).
The Love God?:
The plot: "[The virgin] Abner Peacock's (Knotts) beloved bird-watcher's magazine, The Peacock, is in financial crisis. Desperate to stay afloat, Abner takes on a new partner, Osborn Tremain (Edmond O'Brien [10 Sept 1915 – 9 May 1985] of The Hitch-Hiker [1953 / trailer / full film], D.O.A. [1949 / full masterpiece], The Killers [1946] and so much more), who has an agenda of his own: to publish a sexy gentleman's magazine. This he and his sister Eleanor (Maureen Arthur [15 Apr 1934 – 15 Jun 2022] of Killer's Three [1968 / trailer]) can only do by taking over Abner's, since he himself has been convicted too often of sending obscene material through the mails. Before the hapless bird-watcher can stop the Tremains, the first issue sells over 40 million copies and Abner becomes the unwilling spokesman for First Amendment rights. Swept up in adulation, the unwitting playboy quickly begins settling into the swinging bachelor lifestyle. [YouTube]"
Theme to
The Love God?:
The German poster above is from the talented but completely forgotten German illustrator Hans Bernbauer. The music to the film was composed by Vic Mizzy (9 Jan 1916 – 17 Oct 2009), the man who made the world a better place by composing the original Addams Family theme. The film's single, Mr Peacock, was performed by the obscure and forgotten Orange Colored Sky, which the year previously (1968) released their eponymous (and only) 10-song LP.
Orange Colored Sky's
Mr Peacock:
"A goofy, dispiriting, worthless Don Knotts slapstick comedy. [...] There was just nothing funny about the low-brow satire. If you're that horny, read Playboy. [Dennis Schwartz]"
Beyond the Valley of the Dolls
(1970, dir. Russ Meyer)
Like her sister Jacquline Cole, Gina Dair is in it, somewhere, but who knows exactly where. The Playboy article, The Dolls of 'Beyond the Valley', features two photos of her, but the relevant one would be the one where they say "As uninhibited lovers, Gina Dair and Russ Peak wander away from the main action at a party — and create their own in a private pool." Like Dair, Russ Peak is listed on no cast listing that we could locate. For that matter, we couldn't even locate a Russ Peak as an actor — though we did locate a Russ Peek who had a few non-speaking background appearances in the original Star Trek (1966-69 / disco version of the theme).
The plot, as found at AFI: "Tired of playing to high school audiences, Kelly (Dolly Read), Casey (Cynthia Myers), and Pet (Marcia McBroom), members of a rock trio, travel to Hollywood, California, accompanied by Harris Allsworth (David Gurian), the band's manager and Kelly's lover. There, they are befriended by Kelly's Aunt Susan (Phyllis Davis), an advertising executive, who, despite the misgivings of her lawyer, Porter Hall (Duncan McLeod), decides to share with Kelly the family fortune. At an orgy the band is discovered by the effeminate entrepreneur host, Ronnie "Z-Man" Barzell (John La Zar), who rechristens them 'The Carrie Nations.' Among lovers quickly acquired at Ronnie's party are Lance (Michael Blodgett), a boorish gigolo, who enters into a liaison with Kelly; Emerson (Harrison Page), a law student who wins Pet's love; and Roxanne (Erica Gavin), a lesbian designer who captures Casey's heart. As the celebrated trio perform on national television, Harris, distraught by Kelly's infidelity and Casey's impregnation by him, hurls himself from the catwalk. He is rushed to the hospital, where Dr. Scholl (Dan White) informs Kelly that Harris can look forward to life as a paraplegic. Realizing that Harris is her true love, Kelly devotes herself to his care. Touched by Casey's plight, Roxanne arranges an abortion. Ronnie invites Lance, Roxanne, and Casey to a private party, at which costumes are distributed. Dressed as Superwoman, Ronnie attempts to seduce Lance, who is attired in a loin cloth. Rejected, Ronnie binds the gigolo. After revealing that he is, in fact, a woman, Ronnie bears her breasts, brandishes a sword, and chops off Lance's head. She then plunges a gun into the sleeping Roxanne's mouth and fires. Terrified, Casey phones her friends, who rush to her rescue but arrive too late. As Emerson and Kelly attempt to subdue Ronnie, the gun discharges, killing the transvestite. During the fray, however, the crippled Harris is miraculously cured. In a triple wedding ceremony, Kelly and Harris, Pet and Emerson, and Aunt Susan and an old love are united."
Trailer to
Beyond the Valley of the Dolls:
Get to Know Your Rabbit
(1972, dir. Brian De Palma)
The plot: "Marketing executive Donald (Tom Smothers of Pandemonium [1982 / trailer]) quits his job the day terrorists explode a bomb at his office — a random event that neither makes sense nor adds anything to the story. Seeking a more fulfilling lifestyle, Donald studies with the eccentric Delasandro (Orson Welles [6 May 1915 – 10 Oct 1985] of The Stranger [1946 / full film] and Necromancy [1972]) and becomes a tap-dancing magician. Then Donald goes on tour, enlisting his former boss, an alcoholic named Paul (John Astin), to serve as his manager. While Donald performs in seedy nightclubs across America and romances a young woman identified only as Terrific-Looking Girl (Katharine Ross of A Climate for Killing [1991]), Paul creates a corporate empire called TDM — as in Tap Dancing Musicians. [Every 70s Movie]"
Get to Know Your Rabbit was De Palma's first studio picture and a traumatic experience: aside from his own troubles directing Tom Smothers (an occasional no-show) and Orson Welles (who wouldn't learn his lines), the studio, which didn't know what to do with the anti-establishment-leaning independent director they hired, took the movie away from De Palma, reshot parts and recut it, shelved it, and then barely released it. It bombed.
Gina Dair, seen above in a still from the movie, appears briefly and without credit to shake her breasts as an "Exotic Dancer". As minor as her appearance is, it was used as the selling point for the newspaper advertisement (below) for the film's screening at Melbourne's Star Adult Cinema.
Get to Know Your Rabbit:
"[...] De Palma illustrates with sly, cynical wit how even the best intentions can be appropriated and commercialized [...]. And while De Palma's proposed conclusion would've been remarkably dark and bloody (e.g., Donald graphically slaughtering his rabbit on live TV, in order to self-sabotage his reputation), the studio's eventual, slapped-together ending is both incomprehensible and insipidly uplifting. Jordan Crittenden's scattershot script is littered with amusingly offbeat sequences and often have little to do with the primary storyline [...]. But while certainly odd, it's never particularly funny and the characters end up one-dimensional cartoons. Smothers displays all the personality of processed cheese spread, so playing a good-natured but vapid naïf is an easy fit; [...] Katharine Ross is utterly wasted as an airheaded 'terrific looking girl,' who's also Beeman's biggest fan; while Astin brings his usual mischievous charm to what could've been a scheming, annoying role. [...] [Shock Cinema]"
Or, maybe: "[...] Get to Know Your Rabbit is a brilliantly funny absurdist comedy. Were it more well-known, it would undoubtedly become the cult film it should be. [...] Jordan Crittenden's script is filled with wonderfully nonchalant absurdities — the bomb-caller who tries to announce there is six minutes before a bomb goes off and is put on hold; Katharine Ross's delightfully nonsensical story about her crush on the paper-boy and how she had to sell herself to pay for the paper subscription in order to continue to see him every day; or John Astin as Tom Smothers's workaholic former boss begging — 'I've been so long without an office. Just give me an office, I wouldn't ask you to trust me with a job' and then collapsing in relief when he finally gets to paperclip two pieces of paper together. The final throwaway gag is sublime. [The Science Fiction, Horror and Fantasy Film Review]"
Trailer without commentary:
In what was a somewhat odd but typically grindhouse double feature at the Rideau as well as the Britannia Drive-in, Get to Know Your Rabbit was teamed with the Blaxploitation classic Super Fly (1972 / trailer).
Evil Come, Evil Go
(1972, writ. & dir. Walt Davis)
"Come heed my word! I had a vision! My name is Sarah Jane Butler and I was sent by the Good Lord himself to rid the world of pleasurable sex!"
Sister Sarah Jane (Cleo O'Hara)
The British Film Institute comes out of nowhere to claim that Gina Dair is found in this anti-classic slab of grindhouse sleaze, a claim that may not be all that obtuse when one considers that Dair supposedly appears in the fifth (and only R-rated) Johnny Wadd film, The Danish Connection (which we look at later), which was released two years after this psychotronic joy.
Why? Well, let's look at what Jenifer Sugar and Jill C Nelson write in the second edition of their biography, John Holmes: A Life Measured in Inches: "In effect, [Bob] Chinn had a hand in making The Danish Connection beyond his cameo. While he worked with [Walt] Davis to make Evil Come, Evil Go, Davis was simultaneously creating the plot for Danish Connection, therefore the two films share a lot of the same actors, scenery and costumes." The italics are ours, but the statement lends support to the suggestion that perhaps Gina Dair flits by somewhere in this cult anti-classic.
Evil Come, Evil Go is based on a story by former pornster Bob Chin and not on the forgotten crime novel (cover below) by Whit Masterson. ("Whit Masterson is a pen name of authors, Robert Allison 'Bob' Wade* [8 Jun 1920 – 30 Sept 2012] and H. Bill Miller [11 May 1920 – 21 Aug 1961]. The two also wrote under several other pseudonyms, including Wade Miller and Will Daemer. [Good Reads]") Masterson, some of you might know, wrote the novel upon which the cinema masterpiece Touch of Evil (1958 / trailer) is based, Badge of Evil. Masterson's Evil Come, Evil Go did get turned into a movie at one point, but that flick was titled The Yellow Canary (1963 / music).
* We took a look at him way back in 2012 in They Died in September...
Who director Walt Davis (a.k.a. Garbis Torian / David Zhands / Walt Daviz / Long Hangey / Mike T. Lawn / David Stefans) was, where he came from or where he went, we have never been able to definitively find out, but during the seventies he was involved (as director, producer, actor, writer) in a slew of sleaze and worked with a lot of "names" of the time, including Rick Cassidy and Becky Sharpe and Sandy Dempsey and Ric Lutz and Sandy Carey and Rene Bond and Ann Perry and, perhaps most often, John Holmes. Then he was suddenly gone — like so many in the field, and like Gina Dair, who's supposedly found somewhere in this popular disasterpiece. Davis, aside from being one of those sex filmmakers of yesteryear that would sometimes slip a man-on-man sex scene (sometimes involving himself) in an otherwise heterosexual porn film, also made some of the most ridiculously gory fuck films around. (An underappreciated talent of the world of trash cinema, in other words.
Evil Come Evil Go was pretty much forgotten until Something Weird dug it up and released it with two other equally obscure flicks, the Zoltan G. Spencer films Terror at Orgy Castle (1971 / trailer) and The Hand of Pleasure (1971 / full NSFW film). Since then, Vinegar Syndrome has acquired the film and released it with two of Walt Davis's weirder films: Oh! You Beautiful "Doll" (1974), which plays like a no-budget porn film made by John Waters, and Widow Blue (1970 / full NSFW film).* Along the way, Evil Come Evil Go has achieved psychotronic disrespectability for being the enjoyably sick slab of cinema flotsam that it is. 
* Widow Blue: "A gay affair, featuring in-law brothers, turns into an orgy and a decapitation. Add in the incest angle, sex on top of a filled coffin, more orgies, even more blood and throw it all in a blender for a fun time in XXX land. This is the goriest porno I've ever seen. [Celluloid Terror])"
The plot, as found at Critical Condition: "Sarah Jane (Cleo O'Hara) is on a mission from God: To rid the world of men who have sex just for the sake of pleasure. Her usual method is to pick up a man at a bar, take him to a motel room, then stab him to death just before he is about to finish the dirty deed. You see, Sarah is a traveling preacher dedicated to the cause that sex for pleasure is a sin punishable by death. On her travels she befriends a lesbian (Sandra Henderson) who is willing to help Sarah lure men to her apartment. Sarah even goes as far as killing her lesbian friend's lover to be sure that she has no illicit sex. This wild film borders on the pornographic and is definitely not for anyone who is easily offended or religious. [...] The hair styles and clothing of the early 70s will evoke laughter as will the extremely bad acting and dialog. Cheap gore effects, religious symbolism [...], and a preoccupation with oral sex fill out the bill and make this a once in a lifetime experience. Director Walt Davis' sex films should be re-examined today. His films were way ahead of their time."
"Filled with some great fire and brimstone preaching, a few H.G. Lewis style cheapjack gore effects (reportedly coordinated by one John Curtis Holmes — who is also credited as a pool player we see in the background of one scene and as assistant director!) and plenty of skin, Evil Come, Evil Go owes an obvious debt to Night Of The Hunter (1955 / trailer) but eschews that movie's slick style in favor of delightfully crass exploitative elements. There are a few lengthy sex scenes here that get close to hardcore territory but never quite cross that line, though they serve more to pad out the movie's running time than to actually arouse (Rick Cassidy* pops up in one of them). Throw in an inexplicable guitar player who seems to pop up at random and serenade Sarah, a few great scenes where O'Hara's crazed preacher interrupts a few couples in the midst of coitus and some great footage capturing the seedier side of early seventies Hollywood and it's easy to see why this one would have the cult following that it does. [RockShockPop]" Walt Davis, by the way, plays the first man to die in the film, the unnamed pig farmer.
* "For those who don't know, the muscular porn star Rick Cassidy (born Richard Edward Ciezniak, Jr. [22 July 1943 – 23 Dec 2013]) was one of the few and first porn stars to be a success in both gay and straight porn. In the former, he was 'Jim Cassidy', and in the latter 'Rick Cassidy'. He retired soon after making New Wave Hookers (1985), some claim in response to the scandal caused by the revelation that his sperm receptacle of the movie, Traci Lords, was underage and therefore illegal to screw; others claim he got frightened off porn by the rise of AIDS. That's him below. [a wasted life]"
"[...] Ultimately, Evil Come, Evil Go belongs to the softcore porn genre. Thankfully, any potential for tedium is banished by the weird demeanour of the participants and the hilariously unflattering photography of their less-than-perfect bodies. In fact, the sheer ugliness of the film's near-hardcore sequences can be strangely compelling — in much the same way as road accident voyeurism. The production values are a notch above Andy Milligan but this is primitive stuff with a raw vérité feel that vaguely recalls the same year's Last House On The Left (1972 / trailer) [...]. The ever busy soundtrack is a multi-genre smorgasbord encompassing C&W, easy listening jazz, unnerving avant-garde ambience, and the acoustic ballad theme sung by a travelling minstrel character [possibly Jim Wingert a.k.a. James D. Wingert a.k.a. James Donald Wingert] that can be seen strolling through many of the street scenes. [...] It's clear though that Evil Come, Evil Go is not the work of a hapless moron. There's a sardonic wit underpinning the whole project and it was obviously made with some evangelist-baiting satirical intent. In all, it's a must-see for those who appreciate the more absurd, campier end of the psychotronic spectrum. [Reprobate]"
BTW: The unknown Jim Wingert a.k.a. James D. Wingert a.k.a. James Donald Wingert also played the lead in Bob Chin's non-porn, PG-rated "hippie-dippy California drugfest" Panorama Red (1976), for which he also composed and sang the music.
Jim Wingert — Panama Red:

The Danish Connection
("1974", writ & dir. Walt Davis)
Filmed in 1972, released in 1974, The Danish Connection is the fifth Johnny Wadd film. Taking its title from The French Connection (1972 / trailer), it is the first of three Johnny Wadd films not directed by Bob Chin but made with his permission.
As mentioned above, it was made more or less in tandem with Evil Come, Evil Go; it also uses leftover footage from Chin's prior Johnny Wadd film, Tropic of Passion (1973 / full NSFW movie in 6.5 mins), which he sold to Manuel "Manny" Conde, who then hired Walt Davis to write and direct the first R-rated Wadd film. Gina Dair is said to be one of the plastic-draped babes who "tortures" Johnny Wadd (John Holmes [8 Aug 1944 – 13 Mar 1988]) in a white room — that she, or some other "Gina Dair", is in the movie is evident by her name credit on the poster. Something that never occurred before or after.
Wadd wanders in
The Danish Connection:
The plot, as found at Rare Films: "Everyone wants the formula for male virility that Danish scientists have developed. Wealthy but impotent Herbert Steele (William Kirschner of Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song [1971]), who desires his secretary, Kitty, is willing to pay $1,000,000 or more for the formula. He's hired private eye, Johnny Wadd (Holmes), but Wadd has disappeared after a trip to Hawaii. So Steele hires Eric Jensen (Rick Cassidy), a photographer and Don Juan who claims he can get the drug. Meanwhile, Dr. Livingston Presume (Walt Davis) is also searching for the formula and thinks Wadd has it or knows where it is. Presume kidnaps Wadd and subjects him to a unique torture in order to get into his memory and find out where the formula is hidden. Kitty has another idea."
"The finalized film comes across as a strange mix of a standard Johnny Wadd-style film and a psychedelic 60s-style film. When watching the film it seems rather obvious which footage had been shot by Chinn and never put into Tropic of Passion (1973 / full NSFW movie in 6.5 mins) and what footage had been shot by Walt Davis. The Wadd character never comes across as the main character, nor hero, of the film. Instead that role strangely goes to the character of Eric Jensen (Rick Cassidy). The Danish Connection, despite the odd switching of film styles, in all of its weirdness is a fun film with a good-looking cast and enjoyable softcore scenes. It doesn't fit in well to the Johnny Wadd film canon though, so fans of the series who have no interest in a softcore film won't miss anything by skipping it. [Adult DVD]"
Of note, the composer of the film's soundtrack was Jack Millman, or Jack Maurice Millman (21 Nov 1930 – 6 Oct 2022), who was still alive way back when we took a look at him in 2019 when we looked at Henning Schellerup's The Black Alley Cats (1974) in Babes of Yesteryear: Uschi Digard, Part VII: 1973-74. There we mention that the website "Ubiquity says: 'Jack Millman, aka Johnny Kitchen, had a hand in many interesting, obscure and highly collectible records from the 1960s and 1970s. Producing, composing, recording, editing, releasing, licensing — you name it, Millman did it. The records he touched had an eclectic range from psychedelic rock to Latin jazz, and several include editing techniques that can only be described as an early incarnation of sampling in music. [...] Based in Los Angeles, he was called-upon by multiple people to make tax-shelter records, and provided musical content for the Condor, Mira, Mirawood and Crestview labels amongst many others." We mention all that again just so that we can once again present the following...
Jack Millman presents
The Afro-Soultet's Afrodesia:
And with The Danish Connection, the trial of Gina Dair and her breasts talents disappears, at least in front of the camera. There is still...

Satan's Cheerleaders
(1977, dir. Greydon Clark)
A non-appearance: at least over at imdb, Bobbi Grumley is listed under "Additional Crew" as the movie's choreographer. We've looked at this trash anti-classic a couple of times in passing here at a wasted life, but took a slightly closer look in Part II of our Babe of Yesteryear review of the women of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls since the director's wife and Bobbi Grumley's sister Jacqulin Cole has a juicy role in it. To present a rough summary of what we wrote there:
Full film available at the Internet Archives. "Among the locations were Paradise Cove in Malibu, John Burroughs High School in Burbank, and a house in the mountains north of the San Fernando Valley."
With Satan's Cheerleaders, director Clark and co-scripter Alvin L. Fast hopped onto the comedy horror jiggle cheerleader wagon — with some real "name" stars in tow: John "Horse" Ireland* ([30 Jan 1914 – 12 Mar 1992] of Salon Kitty [1976 / trailer]), Yvonne de Carlo ([1 Sept 1922 – 8 Jan 2007] below, not from the film), character actor Jack Kruschen ([20 Mar 1922 – 2 Apr 2002] of The Angry Red Planet [1959 / trailer]), and icon John Carradine ([5 Feb 1906 – 27 Nov 1988] of The White Buffalo [1977], Shock Waves [1977], House of Frankenstein [1944], The Monster Club [1981] and Vampire Hookers [1978]). This film is the final film appearance of the never-famous son of a famous actor, Sydney Chaplin ([30 Mar 1926 – 3 Mat 2009] of If You Meet Sartana... Pray for Your Death [1968 / trailer], the Italo Rialto Wallace film Double Face [1969 / trailer], and So Evil, My Sister [1974 / trailer]).
* "According to forgotten actress Joanne Dru (31 Jan 1922 – 10 Sept 1996), Ireland's "staunch Republican" wife from 1949 to 57, Ireland was hung like a horse: 'I got John, and he ruined me for all other men. [...] John, I'm sure, had more than Monty [Clift], Marlon [Brando] and Jimmy [Dean] put together (Brando Unzipped, by Darwin Porter).' [R.I.P. Umberto Lenzi, Part II]"
Gina Dair's older sister Jacqulin Cole (above) has a somewhat bigger role in the film as the cheerleaders' chaperone, Ms. Johnson. But, as Outpost Zeta points out: "Jacqulin Cole is Ms. Johnson, the head of the cheerleader team. She's fun, but gets the absolutely worst lines in the film and is on the receiving end of the most egregious transgressions in the whole story."
Trailer to
Satan's Cheerleaders:
Over at All Movie, Fred Beldin says, "There isn't much wiggle room for a film with a title like Satan's Cheerleaders, and this boneheaded (but thoroughly enjoyable) campfest delivers everything such a ridiculous moniker would suggest: trampy teenage vixens, double and triple entendres galore, and bushels of ersatz Satanism. Though light on graphic violence, sex, and special effects, Satan's Cheerleaders takes a far more entertaining route, offering a quartet of bodacious pom-pom girls wearing extremely flattering uniforms (each with their names stitched across their breasts) who flirt and flaunt their way through the most harrowing of experiences with brainless aplomb. Director Greydon Clark approaches the material with shifting degrees of seriousness, so the Satanists are at one moment vicious rapists, the next bumbling stooges. It's an energetic stupidity that carries this disco-scored horror-comedy, which would be enough to recommend it for drunken parties and late-night sleaze fans, but the film also boasts performances from several familiar character actors that will please lovers of Hollywood trivia. [...] The result is an all-'star' cast having a lot of fun with a script that was too dumb to actually make, yet somehow (thankfully) was financed and released."
"An infamously ridiculous melding of two popular '70s B-movie genres (the demonic horror flick and the cheerleader sexploitation flick), Satan's Cheerleaders begs the question: Is this a scary movie trying to be funny, or a funny movie trying to be scary? How about neither? Deeply silly and mind-numbingly awesome, with chintzy special effects, terrible fashion choices and a story that seems to be made up as it goes along, Satan's Cheerleaders features a surprisingly top-notch cast of seasoned professionals [...] sandwiched in between a bevy of bouncing [wanna-be] Playboy Playmates pretending to be high-school cheerleaders. [Loft Cinema]"
"The girls are: Debbie (Alisa Powell) who is quite slutty, Chris (Hillary Horan) who is quiet but usually speaks up with attitude, Patti (Kerry Sherman) who is soon to be possessed, and in my opinion the hottest of the group: Sharon (Sherry Marks). That girl's got some legs on her, rawr! [...] Patti is then devil-raped by the pervert fallen angel Lucifer, who wants to make her his bride. [Varied Celluloid]"
(Spoiler time!) "This film stars John Ireland, Yvonne DeCarlo, John Carradine and some busty women who don't look much like the teenagers they're supposed to be. Satanists abduct four cheerleaders and a teacher. One of the girls turns out to be a real witch and points out that they can't sacrifice a virgin because they've raped the only virgin... the teacher. DeCarlo has some great lines ('Kill! Mutilate! Destroy!') and she gets killed by dogs. In the end, the girls use their powers to help their school's football team win, because, well, they're cheerleaders. [Zero Star Cinema]"
The theme song —
One for All and All for One
sung by Sonoma:
Gerald Lee is credited for the music of Satan's Cheerleaders. To what extent he was responsible for Sonoma, the group that sang the above disco ditty, is unknown. Sonoma, for that matter, are also completely unknown.
Continue to Background Babe found in
Playboy's Beyond the Valley of the Dolls Pictorial:

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...