Tag Archives: kink

She-Man (1967)

“I’ll dig ditches. I’ll empty the garbage, but I’m not letting her turn me into any drag queen.”

Leave it to the eclectic minds at Something Weird to reprint She-Man and unleash it on the unsuspecting public. She-Man is a tawdry tacky tale, hilariously campy, packed with bad acting and cheap sets. Given my strange tastes, I loved it, and if you’re a Something Weird watcher, then chances are you will enjoy the film too.

she-manHunky playboy Albert Rose (Leslie Marlowe), Korean War veteran and son of an affluent senator receives a message to attend a mysterious meeting. Flown by private plane, and then driven by a female chauffeur to a motel, he’s blackmailed into giving up a year of his life to serve as a maid to husky-voiced dominatrix Dominata (Dorian Wayne), who’s really a transvestite. Taken to Dominata’s “place in the country,” Albert is given hormone pills, shaved, and dressed in a blonde wig and a kinky little maid’s outfit….

She Man is hilarious and ludicrous camp fun. This was obviously a low budget film, and it shows in every scene. Albert is flown (off camera) in Dominata’s private plane, and this would indicate she has money, but then Albert is taken to a cheap, sleazy motel room for the blackmail portion of the deal. In a pitch-black room in which we can only see Albert’s face glowing in this black and white film, he listens to Dominata’s plans for his moral degradation. Some film clips include Dominata speaking while we see a silhouette of a woman’s profile, and the fact that the silhouette’s mouth isn’t moving just makes for a lot more fun.

Something Weird Video releases choice cheesy film and you really have to leave your normal film barometers of taste behind when you decide to watch of their many, many perverse titles. I love Something Weird–the trailer alone is worth the price of a DVD. That said, Something Weird titles, and that includes the immortal She-Man are not for everyone, but if you’re a camp lover, like me, when you discover Something Weird Video, you know you’ve hit the Mother Lode.

Director Bob Clark also made Porkys and Porkys II–two films I often rewatch when I need a few laughs. Clark and his son were tragically killed in a head-on collision with a drunk driver in April 2007.

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Filed under Cult Classics

Maitresse (1976)

“I’m not the cautious type.”

In Barbet Schroeder’s kinkfest film Maitresse small-time burglar Olivier (Gerard Depardieu) stumbles into the dungeon of high-class dominatrix, Ariane (Bulle Ogier). He’s expecting to burgle an old lady’s apartment, but instead he finds rubber masks, whips, various torture devices, and even a coffin. He’s fascinated, and when rubber clad Ariane puts him to work, Olivier uses the opportunity as an excuse to strike up a relationship

Ariane–who lives with her Doberman, Texas–is a woman who enjoys her work. At one point, she even tells Olivier that she considers her clients to be her friends. Her facial expressions rarely change as she moves between clients–sometimes managing two or three at a time. She approaches her work with cold calculation, and the boorish Olivier cannot understand this, or her explanation: “all I do is direct the show.” He asks Ariane questions about her past, and her reply is: “you shouldn’t ask me questions because I either lie or I don’t answer them.” The film creates this unusual woman who defies every convention and every explanation, and then the audience is expected to swallow her need for a relationship with Olivier. The relationship between Ariane and Olivier just isn’t electric enough. They have a rather boring domestic arrangement which seems to include Olivier laying around her apartment and snooping through her personal papers while she whips the you-know-what out of a client in the dungeon. The relationship between Olivier and Ariane remains unconvincing.

Gerard Depardieu is always at his best when his explosive and overpowering personality is allowed to rampage a bit–he’s severely restrained in this film, and ultimately he appears sulky and a bit of a pouter. Olivier is consumed by Ariane’s professional life, and yet he remains outside it. At other moments, the kinky becomes the mundane. In one scene, he sits reading the newspaper while Ariane dresses in a bizarre tight rubber outfit for an appointment. Some of the very best scenes occur when the boundaries between Ariane’s private and professional lives mesh. Olivier simply does not understand that Ariane’s clients pay her for certain performances within very strict and, therefore, safe perimeters. Olivier carries some of the abuse beyond these agreed upon perimeters, and ultimately, Olivier is just bad for business.

Maitresse is at first an interesting film, but then it becomes fairly standard fare. Olivier happily takes the money Ariane earns, but then inevitably he takes the standard predictable route and tries to save Ariane. The film had potential, but the plot devolved to the ordinary and banal rather quickly, and this seems ironic as the whole film is supposed to be about the extraordinary.

Araine’s dungeon is a veritable den of iniquity, and Schroeder left nothing to the imagination when capitalizing on the shock effect of pure sensationalism. Viewers may find some of the scenes too difficult to watch. There’s male and female nudity galore here–and most of the S&M acts that I can think of are here on film. These acts range from the mildly naughty to the extremely painful. Obviously, this film is not for all tastes. If you enjoyed the films Crime of Passion or 9 1/2 Weeks you may enjoy this film. However, all viewers should be warned that the film contained one extremely graphic and hideous scene of the slaughter of a horse (Olivier wants to eat a horse steak and goes directly to the slughterhouse). I really wish I hadn’t see this as it’s impossible to forget the horse’s agony and terror.

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Filed under France, Gerard Depardieu