Well, it’s been awhile, but our old pal Carlos Tobalina is back.
This time, we dig back to the dawn of his career, for 1969’s Infrasexum. Some old oversmoked Brad Grinter lookalike going by the pseudo of “Errof Lynn” (clever, that) leaves his palatial California estate (which feels like a Floridian McMansion due to it’s utter lack of front yard) and hops into his Lincoln Continental Mark III (ooh, he must be rich! Couldn’t he at least afford a damn Caddy?) to head to an “office” he was too cheap to finish paneling (the wood paneling stops a quarter of the way across the wall behind his desk, before going straight on sheetrock…oh, the budget) and turn over his company to (get this) his secretary and the trollish Queef from Marilyn and the Senator.
Then we get a quick flashback. His zaftig-breasted, cellulite-afflicted truck stop waitress of a wife (with a pair of elephantine hamhocks so meaty you could make peasoup with ’em) drops an eye rolling delivery of this hilarious line on us:
“Why don’t you desire me? Other men desire me…they devour me with their eyes. You don’t like the Way I look? You don’t like this? You could at least try…(absurd, pained moan) you could at least try!”
Apparently he’s so unhappy with his odd looking, beefy wife and crap office that he’s running away from it all. “I’m going to instruct a cab driver to take me to a used car lot” where he picks up a 1958 Cadillac – you know, with the fins? “I like this car. It’s an old car, but it runs good…and it has a good radio!” and heads down to Vegas, where the Sands is featuring Julia herself, Dihann Carroll (with Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara as openers!). The Desert Inn top bills Frankie Avalon with Kaye Ballard (now there’s a mismatch made in hell…), while the Aladdin has has Little Richard. The Flamingo has Don Ho and Fats Domino, and Ceasar’s actually has Sinatra! Holy crap, this is camp heaven, just like Ray Dennis Steckler‘s Red Heat! Can we go?
“Lynn”, who’d shift pseudos to the equally ridiculous “Dr. Malcom (sic) Wellburn, MD” for Marilyn and the Senator, practically comes with a scratch and sniff card – you can be overwhelmed by that old man smell of stale piss and poorly applied brylcreem just looking at closeups of the guy – whistles his omnipresent voiceovers through his dentures as he wanders around through both a seedy Los Angeles and Vegas in its heyday, while zaftig early sexploitation starlet Marsha Jordan stomps around their well appointed hotel room…er, estate in a tacky green chiffon nightie (see-through, of course) and drops winners like this:
“Mom, please – I’d rather not talk about my personal life. We haven’t had ANY sex life in 3 1/2 YEARS!”
Tobalina himself pops up, bedecked in a ridiculously cheap looking homemade poncho and instantly demanding “Lynn” hand back his salary in shame (seriously, he hands him a big wad of cash the second they meet) before introducing him to a trio of unlikely “hippies” who in one quick cafe meet and greet “introduced me to marijuana, LSD and the hippie world!”
Said “hippie world” consists of some hilariously undercranked dancefloor boogieing to a spastically sped up Woodstock era band. It’s so silly, they even address it in the dialogue: “they were dancing so fast…”
Then Tobalina rooks the schlub for more cash, charging him $120/month (plus several additional mooches for cash along the way) for a dangerous looking rundown ghetto shack “he calls The Pad.” Then he begs for cash for weed and procurement of ho’s (which goes from $100 to “just give me it all” in a heartbeat), namely some one credit wonder named Molli Starkins and the thickly accented Maria Pia of Casanova 2, who ain’t half bad lookin’ until you notice that nasty vertical surgical scar running the entire length of her midsection…
But their dull lesbi-groping does nothing for him (much like the audience), so after breaking into a fake crying jag, he heads out to the park where bikers and hippies congregate, jam in odd pairings (trumpet and bongos, yeah, that’s the ticket!) and make out (while Tobalina gets overenthusiastic about some dude with a chihuahua).
Then things take a weird right turn when character actor Vincent Barbi (Black Belt Jones, Blood Orgy of the She Devils, Corpse Grinders, Dolemite, Lady Godiva Rides and the Exotic Dreams of Casanova, with his pants hiked up to his moobs) gets wind of all the cash “Lynn’s” been throwing around and drops by a completely different place than “The Pad” for a shakedown, while his sweaty, Bill Graham-lookalike pal (Luis Vargas) stabs some walk-on character and plays with what we’re supposed to believe is her liver or something (despite their carrying her completely unblemished body away 5 minutes later) and ties the guy to a tree.
Miraculously, this superman of the Geritol set just drops off the tree, no rope in sight (!) to kick both of their asses (!), actually killing them with a gentle tap on the back with a brick, and (get this) impaling the other with a twig (!).
Apparently the cops give the guy a pat on the back, because he’s next seen feeding ducks and pigeons in the park (hey, at least he’s engaging in an age-appropriate activity for a change!), visiting a really crappy parking lot carnival where folks dress up like Aztecs and salute the sun (!) and working up fully finished and framed paintings on the sidewalk. Damn, even Bob Ross couldn’t work that fast…
This means we get treated to a several minute sequence of Carlos’ dumpy middle aged body (and hairless overgrown child’s ass) faux-humping and making goofy comedy shrieks while Matt understandably closes her eyes and looks utterly disgusted throughout. Then he actually switches sides and comes on to “Lynn” apropos of nothing!
“sorry, amigo, I just can’t do it. I am not a homosexual, I just am not a homosexual…think nothing of it. I think I’ll get back to my painting.”
“You don’t dig girls, you don’t care for boys…what in the hell are you gonna do for sex?”
So after a bit of soul searching in the mountains (where he starts talking about God and such), “Lynn” finally calls a damn shrink (sheesh, took ya long enough, guy…) and discovers his mental block stems from his first sexual experience (duh…). So Carlos hooks him up with a bottle-redhead from:
“the Charitable Sex Society, an organization of patriotic ladies who want to free our city and country of sex offenders…in the states where prostitution is illegal, there are sex starved men either shy or too busy to find romance. Some become rapists, child molesters and even murders (sic). These women want to please these men (!)”
But even here, he finds “(his) last attempt, (his) last failure”, so he gives up and goes back to painting, while Carlos joins the Society and “interviews new members”. But when one of his Picasso-lite paintings actually sells (to some mob type named Jerry Colonna (also of Lady Godiva Rides) with a childishly handwritten business card!), he decides to hire a model, who turns out to be none other than Sharon Matt of The Hang-Up and Herschell Gordon Lewis‘ Linda and Abilene. Her sassing and flower child good looks magically restore his flagging libido, roll credits.
Damn, I really missed all those monthly installments of the Carlos Tobalina saga! This is the most fun I’ve had reviewing a film in months.
Totally up my Something Weird-style 60’s/early 70’s sexploitation alley, Infrasexum is an abjectly absurd and patently ridiculous slice of grindhouse history, perfectly capturing, albeit through the skewed funhouse lens of a bottom feeder “auteur”, a particular period in American history.
Feeling much akin to the works of such exploitation standbys as Harry Kerwin, Herschell Gordon Lewis, Ray Dennis Steckler and Doris Wishman, Tobalina brings the same junk cinema inanity and ridiculous dialogue and plotting of his later hardcore efforts to a more likeable and (comparatively) universal softcore sexploitation affair. Not a damn bit of it makes the slightest degree of sense, but between the time capsule travelogue footage and period cars and fashions to the Dadaist psychobabble of the ridiculous plot and Tobalina’s patented hilarious non-native English dialogue, you have a hilarious and quite recommended way to pass a weekend morning.
Maybe it’s just been awhile since being exposed to the last one of these sort of things, but I absolutely loved it.