, , , , , , , , , , ,

Next up we have a film by a fellow named Victor Milt, who had a brief mid-70s run as hardcore director “Tim McCoy” (or a bit earlier, as “Milton Vickers”…take your pick in the phony name sweepstakes.)

First and most amusingly of the two films on this disc comes Sherlick Holmes, a Harry Reems affair that kicks off with a Monty Python meets Ralph Bakshi-esque “dirty cartoon” of cutout animation.  Think Terry Gilliam with the sensibilities of Fritz the Cat and you’ll get the picture.

Bisexual hardcore vet Zebedy Colt, fresh off career high point The Story of Joanna, stars as perennial sidekick and biographer Watson (no proper name given, so we’ll stick with the film’s conventions here), who kicks off the film interrupted in his memorialization of “the Case of the Munich Eunuch” by Reems’ bug-eyed Holmes banging the maid in full pipe, coat and deerstalker.

Apparently there’s some nonsense about a time machine, which just happens to go off, transporting the pair into 70’s NYC (complete with Bobby Astyr as a jive talking Huggy Bear-esque pimp and a bemused crowd of huge ‘fro-ed onlookers).

Their incomprehension of (then) modern day street idiom leads them to believe they’re in the company of the city Mayor, which leads to their going back to his pad for some action with his stable (and a lot of Cheech & Chong style patter on “illicit substances”).  One of the bewigged hookers sports a prominent inverted pentagram tat on her ass, the other a heart above her whatsis.  High class, I tell ya…

“A lovely girl.  I could take her home to mother.”‘

Naturally, as soon as they pass out, they get rolled, and have to raid Astyr’s closet…meaning they spend the rest of the film decked out in full-on, straight up pimp threads.  When they see a misspelled newspaper headline (“Mayor Flys to Berlin”), they head to the airport, where they find the same maid they were double teaming a hundred years prior dusting up on a boarded up plane (“this plane ain’t goin’ anywhere!”).

After the expected business ensues, Sherlick deduces they’ll find Astyr at a massage parlor (go figure), where Little Miss Hail Satan works. They get it on again, and Colt gets stuck with the fat madam before the trio take off together.

Surprise, Holmes was right – Astyr is in on this particular establishment’s action, and pissed at Holmes and Watson for stealing one of his hoes.  This leads to Astyr chasing Holmes, who’s chasing Astyr…well, the other hooker of his, anyway.  Much incidental balling of the same people by different parties ensues.  Even Annie Sprinkle (still crazy even at this early date) drops in for a round.

One of the funniest things about this film (and Milt’s subsequent Sex Wish, featuring much of the same cast) is the involvement of Wishman cinematographer (and occasional softcore sexploiter in his own right) Chuck (“C. Davis”) Smith (as camera operator and film editor, respectively).  You have to hear that commentary track he did with Doris on A Night to Dismember, seriously…

Colt does a splendid job of working the theatrical accent and spouting linguistic archaisms, never even coming close to breaking character. He was clearly relishing this role, and comes across quite admirably (and amusing!) as a result.  Reems is his usual self, google-eyed and camping it up to the Nth degree, and Astyr pulls in somewhere between the two, working the Harlem street patois angle for all it’s worth and shuckin’ and jivin’ throughout.

They’re all pretty amusing in an overly obvious, Borscht belt sense…but it’s Colt’s nigh-deadpan fidelity to the tropes of a bygone era and comparative straight man approach that leaves him coming out the clear winner…by a Missouri mile, in fact.

In any case, it’s a fun diversion, very much in the vein of something like Rentadick and the British slap n’ tickle films of the era if not the low rent blaxploitation comedy ala Super Spook or “Super Soul Brother” (I’ll let you look up the original title for yourselves).

Next up, Marlene Willoughby, Vanessa Del Rio and in one of her rare non-twin acts (usually in conjunction with sis Brooke), Taylor Young star in Carnival of Blood / Death By Invitation / Head Nurses producer Leonard Kirtman’s Reunion.

A decidedly Milliganesque low rent take on the old dark house movie, this features a group of nasty assholes who get invited by the equivalent of Mr. U.N. Owen to an island estate, where a recording gets played at dinner revealing that they’ve been gathered by a bullied high school classmate to get killed…er, well, hypnotized and balled by the guy, running around in a Dracula cape.  And there’s no way off the island.

Shades of Agatha Christie…someone paging Ten Little Maidens a decade early?

Sadly, much of the prurience here is dominated by the snooze inducing Bree Anthony (Vixens of Kung Fu, Oriental Blue), but to be honest, none of the ladies here are top tier talent, so to speak.  Del Rio and Young have each fared far better in other productions of the period, and the others really aren’t worth mentioning – Willoughby in particular comes off a half step removed from Babyface’s Molly Seagrim, which is to say unconventional looking at best.

Probably working best when viewed as an ersatz Something Weird softcore cum no budget regional drive in “mystery”, Reunion is marred more by its questionable cast and glacial pace than the promising (if well worn) literary and cinematic tropes it appropriates.

In other words, it ain’t all that bad if your standards of entertainment are as quirky as the SWV reference suggests…but don’t walk in expecting to get all hot and bothered, because it just ain’t gonna happen.

Both are rather silly and minor efforts in their own respect, but it’s probably worth it for Sherlick Holmes alone.  Can someone isolate all of Colt’s dialogue and shrink it down to a half hour mp3 or something?

Priceless, I tell ya…