Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Touch of Her Flesh / The Curse of Her Flesh / The Kiss of Her Flesh |
Actors: Angelique (VI), David Boxwell, Vivian Del Rio, Rit Dexter, Sally Farb
Genres: Horror, Mystery & Suspense
No Description Available. Genre: Horror Rating: UN Release Date: 12-AUG-2003 Media Type: DVD
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Legendary grindhouse trilogy is a major disappointment
Surfink | Racine, WI | 09/24/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"After reading about Michael and Roberta Findlay's "Flesh" trilogy for years (in mostly glowing terms), I was eagerly anticipating this Something Weird triple-bill DVD. I am sad to report that, with the exception of the Monster A-Go-Go/Psyched by the 4D Witch double set, this is the most boring and overrated release from SW that I've yet encountered. If you're expecting the wit and style of Satan in High Heels; the crackling energy and imagination of Confessions of a Psycho Cat; the kooky, non-sequitur weirdness of Another Day, Another Man; the moody photography and creepy shocks of The Defilers; or the high-camp hilarity of Scum of the Earth, Olga's House of Shame, Horrors of Spider Island, Curious Dr. Humpp, and other jaw-dropping SW classics, forget it. The first two movies here, Touch of Her Flesh and Curse of Her Flesh, are uniformly pretty drab, while the third, Kiss of Her Flesh, is only marginally better. Overall, the films are on about the technical level of The Creeping Terror or Beast of Yucca Flats, but lacking either's charm or bellylaughs. The homemade credits that open each film should give you a clue as to what to expect (one isolated clever touch is that Curse's credits are scrawled on the walls of a toilet stall, alongside such graffiti as "Whatever happened to Gigi Darlene" and "Lem eats blue film"). Touch of Her Flesh sets up the plot of the series: New York businessman Richard Jennings (director Michael Findlay) chances to see his wife with another man (in the Biblical sense), runs into the street, is hit by a car, and is transformed into degenerate, wheelchair-bound, eyepatch-wearing, misogynist avenger Stanley Blender. He's bent on killing his wife, her lover(s), and any other female of questionable morality, utilizing bizarre and depraved methods (e.g., electrocution, decapitation, poisoned semen) and a variety of unconvincing disguises. Unfortunately, Touch and Curse are VERY slow moving (even at under 80 minutes each), and padded with seemingly interminable softcore petting scenes, grindhouse strip acts and topless dancers, etc. There is only enough plot and action in each movie to sustain a half-hour TV drama, and the psycho-killer `narrative' seems almost a framing device for the nudie and burlesque inserts. The photography is pretty good and there is some nice, grimey 42nd Street atmosphere captured, but there is little or no live sound, the editing is haphazard, the acting atrocious, and the direction flat. When the plot actually kicks in every so often, the "action" is awkward and tentative, reminding me of nothing so much as a poorly-executed student film. There is sporadic narration and offscreen dialogue (similar to a Doris Wishman movie but not as funny), and occasional passages with sync sound. The soundtracks consist of stock classical, twangy sax-rock, and native drumming cues, and a loungey pop croon ("The Right Kind of Lovin"). Ed Wood never made a movie this bad (or dull). Kiss of Her Flesh actually has more plot, action, kinky weirdness, nudity (full frontal), and better editing than Touch or Curse, but still drags pretty badly. Jennings/Stanley torments one victim with a fork and lobster claw (!?!), there is some icky (implied) S&M and incest, more novel murder techniques, and director Findlay appears in one of the softcore scenes, mercifully keeping his clothes on. There are some unintentional "product placement" shots of a Bernz-O-Matic propane torch (used to mutilate/kill one victim, of course) and a Lancer's Vin Rose wine bottle. While `Kiss' is a bit more watchable than Touch or Curse, it suffers from all of the same flaws (infrequent live sound; awkward, "cheater" murder sequences; dull, repetitive nudie inserts; terrible acting; etc.)
Print quality of the three features is surprisingly good overall, with generally excellent tonal values and sharpness, only minor speckling/blemishing, and a few splices. The extras (trailers, stills) mentioned above are nowhere to be found, so there's no other reason to buy this than the movies themselves. Bottom line: even as a huge fan of no-budget B&W 50s/60s trash filmmaking, I found these more in the "tiresome" category than "so bad it's hilarious." You have to wade through a lot of boring, amateurish nudie footage for a few lines of campy dialogue and very ineptly handled murder sequences. Since very little actually happens, there's only a sprinkling of unintentional laughs throughout, and none of the three movies are nearly as gruesome or stylish as their reputations (the brief "cheater" gore episodes happen mostly offscreen). With little plot, convincing action, humor, or talent on display, and an underlying hateful, misogynistic tone, there isn't much to recommend here. This set may hold historical interest for Adults Only fans and gorehound completists as early examples of the roughie and stalker/slasher genres, but I can't imagine wanting to sit through multiple viewings; maybe Kiss of Her Flesh, but certainly not the other two. I would recommend purchase of any of the movies mentioned at the beginning of this review instead of this very disappointing disc. One star rating for Touch of Her Flesh and Curse of Her Flesh; two stars for Kiss of Her Flesh; three stars for the DVD package (nice transfers but no extras!). Note to Something Weird: when do we get to see some more good stuff like She Mob, Spiked Heels and Black Nylons, Sin in the Suburbs, Moonlighting Wives, Ride the Wild Pink Horse, Living Venus, Suburban Roulette, The Lonely Sex, Smell of Honey Taste of Brine, and the rest of the Joe Sarno and H. G. Lewis catalogs on DVD? I'm waiting very impatiently."
Underwhelming, long-awaited DVD
Howard Sauertieg | Harrisburg, PA USA | 10/30/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Having read enthusiastic reports of the FLESH trilogy's wild abandon and craziness, I was seriously disappointed when I actually saw these films.
TOUCH OF HER FLESH is my favorite of the three, though it's not less dull than its sequels. The main character, Jennings, finds his wife entertaining another man in their marital bed. He responds by running pell mell into traffic, where he becomes crippled. Confined to a wheelchair, wearing an eyepatch to hide the wounded socket beneath, Jennings stews over his wife's infidelity and plans vengeance against his wife, her lover and all women "who display themselves in public." That's a lot of vengeance, most of it irrational and pointless. With its classical score, ambitious photography and palpable angst, TOUCH plays like a lowly art film. Its "success," I presume, inspired two sequels. For the first of these, CURSE, the Jennings character must be resurrected and given something to do. He is, and his bizarrely mindless assault on friends and relations of his wife, her lover, and random sex-industry types remains a template for cheap serial-killer sequels. Both CURSE and KISS demand not to be taken seriously, which would be fine if the Findlays had put their artistic license to good use. Inexcusably, their films are slow as molasses, coming to life only when another unorthodox murder is imminent. Between killings lie vast deserts of bad acting, repellent fake sex and arbitrary, ludicrous plot developments. The FLESH trilogy is not for children or impressionable adults."
Times Square time capsule...
DrSpecter | United States | 08/27/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Flesh trilogy is a kind of travelogue of Times Square in the sixties, and uses a lot of fun, energetic and interesting camera techniques. This isn't surprising as Director Michael Findlay came from the 50s/60s New York underground film scene. Most of the strip clubs are real, and there's a lot of scenes shot guerrilla-style in the streets. The soundtrack has some early soul music. Michael's misogynistic rant might turn some people off. But remember, he made this move with his wife Roberta, and they were friends with a lot of the women in it.
Half roughies and half experimental films. The Flesh trilogy live up to their reputation. I haven't read anything Richard Kern has said about him, but I'd have to guess he's an influence."