I Saw a Film!

A not very nice teenage girl, who looks a good bit older, tiffs with her parents and lies about her company going out so she can see an older fella. The wet dishcloth who gives her rides to the other fella hangs around with a bunch of cute rock and rollers at a club (“She’s a Tiger” played by a little combo over and over again with the only lyric being, “She’s a Tiger!”) They dance and make noise and seem plenty kooky fun, enter The Beard, a beatnik artist type a few years older who makes money painting and drawing the young ladies and getting rousted by the cops.

I’ve mentioned this before but during this period in America just having a beard was enough of a mark of slovenliness and cravenness that cops would follow you and suspicion would leveled at you. See Dan Wakefield’s novel Going All the Way for a nice breakdown.

This is a Herschel Gordon Lewis penned bit of crap, and it’s filmed so starkly, and with a ton of day for night contrast that half the film is indiscernible from shadows. Still, aside from the thrilling skinny dipping sequence there’s not much to look at.

Eventually, The Beard gets his hands on our little bad girl, and while she cuts at him verbally (endlessly picking at him being little and weak) she begs him to paint her as a full length nude. At the same time she keeps berating him, he finally ties her up and begins to paint her. Incidentally, the cops took his last version of her (she’d posed before). As the gang looks for her, unsure of what happened to her.

Finally, the dimwitted bad girl mentions she’d like to commit suicide and the beatnik artist drugs her and leaves her with the old style gas oven turned up.

Big drama! Will the gang find their damsel before the gas gets her or explodes? Oh screw it, yes they do . . . and the twit then demands her beau marry her. It’s an odd film, and oddly executed like most HGL material. The main thesis being that her parents spoilt her rotten and she’s basically a mess of privilege.

This one costs about 2 bucks on Prime . . . don’t pay for it unless you’re a research loon like I am. This is one of the few non-gore HGL products, the rest being things like 2000 Maniacs and Blood Feast. I just put The Alien Dead on here a few days ago, that two was a suffering “bad movie” from HGL. But I’m a sucker for a “beatnik” tale and had to see it.

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