Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Shame of Patty Smith / You've Ruined Me Eddie |
Actors: Ted Marshall, Jeanne Rainer, Sue Ellis, Charles Martin, Robert J. Cannon
Directors: Leo A. Handel, R. John Hugh
If you were a woman, you'd understand.... Poor pretty Patty. An "average American girl," she goes on a quiet date with her boyfriend and ends up getting raped by three psychotic thugs. Too embarrassed to report it to the p... more »
Solid SWV bun-in-the-oven exploitation package
Surfink | Racine, WI | 08/01/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Something Weird Video presents another satisfying (if a bit schizophrenic) DVD double-bill with the slightly controversial unifying theme of illegal abortion. The Shame of Patty Smith is a grimly serious, sincere, and quite well done plea for legalization (!!), whereas You've Ruined Me Eddie is a cheap, often silly exploiter pushing the father's-rights angle and portraying the pregnant teen who's pressuring her rich daddy to fund her abortion as a selfish, shallow bubblehead.
After locking bumpers with a carful of scummy hoods in a minor traffic accident, Patty Smith and her snooty boyfriend Alan are followed to the beach where she's gang-raped while he's forced to watch at knifepoint. The totally unsupportive jerk dumps her immediately ("Try to forget the whole thing. What happened, happened. I've got a hard day ahead of me."). As if that isn't enough, she soon finds out she's pregnant. Her spunky roommate Mary (Merry Anders in a fine performance) helps her seek an abortion from Dr. Miller who, while sympathetic to Patty's plight, declines because the operation is a felony carrying a two-to-five-year sentence, but offers to arrange an adoption for her. Another doctor tells her he'll do it for the then-astronomical sum of $600 (in 20-dollar bills). Next, Patty is fired from her job, and in desperation visits a Catholic priest to try to borrow the money for the operation. Of course, when he finds out what she wants it for he goes ballistic and throws her out. Worthless Alan reappears, `helpfully' providing the name of slimy bar owner Bruno VeSota, who knows a "doctor" that will perform the abortion for $200. When Patty tells Bruno she doesn't have that much money, he offers to pimp her out to make up the difference! She finally scrapes together the cash, and we follow her on a scary journey to a dingy health club where a "doctor" (actually an unemployed pharmacist) and his "nurse" wife perform the operation, then sell her some mysterious pills to take in case of complications. Of course the abortion is botched, and dazed Patty soon experiences severe abdominal pains as her condition worsens. Fearing the worst, Mary calls in Dr. Miller, but it's too late. An earnest narrator recites some shocking statistics (one woman per hour dying from botched illegal abortions in the U.S. alone!); Dr. Miller, a homicide detective, and a Swedish doctor (abortion was then legal in Sweden) have a mini-debate at the hospital over the merits of legalization; and finally the cops nail the sleazy abortionists. Not at all a campy knee-slapper, Patty Smith is bleak and depressing, and it's hard to imagine even the coldest-hearted pro-lifer not being unsettled by the appalling statistics and the nightmarish scenario presented in the film. As Andy Kaufman's Vic Ferrari used to say, "Hard to get happy after that one!" Ib Melchior (Angry Red Planet, Reptilicus) was associate producer, and the L.A. County Grand Jury provided technical assistance.
You've Ruined Me Eddie is a more typical exploitation cheese-fest, shot in Florida with a cast of unknowns. Slumming rich-b***h Joan Denton finds out she's pregnant by her "secret" summer fling, working-class laundry mechanic "from the other side of town" Eddie Mercer. (Eddie's an orphan who's harlot mother abandoned him.) Joan wants to "do something about this, and quick", but Eddie sees the unborn child as his ticket out of his dead-end existence. New-in-town hot blonde Vikky Smith (harboring her own scandalous secret) meets Eddie at the bus depot lunch counter, moves into the rooming house he lives in, and gets a job at the laundry where he works. Joan tells wealthy daddy Dr. Denton that she's pregnant (he's most concerned that nobody at the bar overhears) and he reluctantly agrees to seek an abortion for her to stop her whining. Strangely, Joan continues to taunt and tease Eddie, sneaking into his rooming-house to nibble his earlobes, and Vikky, in skimpy short-shorts, later consoles him with a bottle of booze. Meanwhile, Dr. Denton's attorney, who's running his own blackmail game, has Eddie jailed on a phony charge, where he's beaten senseless and bloody with a rubber hose by the piggish sheriff, then fired from his job at the laundry. Joan does a bizarre, exuberant dance routine in front of her bedroom mirror in anticipation of her post-abortion freedom. Vikky's hardball Miami attorney shows up and attempts to secure Eddie's release, but before he can Eddie breaks out of jail. Joan, who's already been acting pretty goofy, goes completely bonkers, dons a plastic raincoat, grabs a gun, tracks Eddie to the orphanage and wounds him, then chases him through the swamp yelling "Wait for me! Don't you want to make love to me, Eddie?" All interested parties finally converge in the swamp for the tragic finale. Eddie is cheaply but competently produced, featuring "racy" dialogue, "provocative" plot points, some sax-y rock'n'roll numbers, and a brief close-up of Marilyn Monroe's nude calendar pinup. Poor Eddie, he's got to be the most pathetically doomed loser since Marv Grant in High School Big Shot; I guess he shoulda worn a condom! Low-budget, trashy, entertaining silliness.
Print quality of the features varies considerably, with Patty Smith looking virtually pristine save for some very light speckling, while Eddie has slightly poorer tonal scale, detail, and sharpness, and light speckling/lining throughout, but remains quite watchable, although one scene in a dress shop is riddled with jump cuts and another scene where the laundry owner apparently tries to feel up Vikky appears to have been censored. There is also at times some soft background noise that sounds like projector fluttering. Extras include youth-in-trouble trailers for Damaged Goods (highly recommended!!), Eighteen and Anxious, Gary Graver's The Embracers, Girl in Trouble (also recommended), Married Too Young, Street Corner, and Unmarried Mothers; an amusing "classroom scare short" entitled How Much Affection?; an exploitation art gallery; and a comical nine-minute marriage manual book pitch, whose chief amusement value lies in watching the speaker trying to nonchalantly read the awkwardly placed cue cards out of the corners of his eyes. Though Patty Smith is a pretty somber, if well-made, downer, the rest of the set is good, sleazy fun, making for another solid exploitation collection from SWV. "Sick shmick!""