OCTOBER 29 VHS MOVIE REVIEW : 2069 A SEX ODYSSEY (1974)
Five female space aliens from the planet Venus are sent to earth in order to harvest "Spermatazoa" so that their race can survive. You see, Venus is exclusively populated by women who keep a few men in captivity for breeding purposes... but the men are running dry, so these five ladies make a trip to earth in order to gather up a couple thousand gallons of sperm. These ladies (Nina Frederik, Catharina Conti, Heidrun Hankammer, Alena Penz and Gerti Schneider) think that the best way to extract the sperm is by using a bizarre suction / pumping device, similar to something that one would find milking cows in a barn; however, the men in this small Swedish town decide to show these ladies a thing or two about sperm extraction. Although it is a bit odd having five incredibly naive ladies walking around town having sex with any random Joe (or Sven in this case) that crosses their path, these men take comfort in the fact that a French skiing team is practicing for the Olympics nearby, and surely, that must be where these women have come from... right?
Here we have an erotic comedy from West Germany that is actually - get this - funny! Yes, I've read a lot of hate for this movie in my search for information to fill in this movie entry, and although the general opinion that I've found has been negative, I got more than a couple of laughs out of the eighty-minute running time. Whereas most erotic comedies tend to feature gratuitous sex and nudity for the majority of the movie and throw in a few laughs here and there, this one takes the opposite route. Sure, there's a bit of sex, and yes, there's a decent amount of nudity (mostly towards the end)... but the selling point of the film is the comedy, and that's the main focus of the film for the running time. There's a few small subplots that pop up in order to move this along; there's the mayor's wife who saw the UFO land, but is ignored by everyone; there's the sole police officer who is damned near incompetent in his quest for "justice" against these ladies; and of course, there's the women themselves, who are forced to find more fashionable clothes in order to conceal their identities. This includes, but is not limited to, the theft of a nun's habit, the stealing of the aforementioned police officers uniform, and the snatching of a bumbling idiot's coat and pants. It may not sound all that funny as you read it, but the execution of it all is quite good in a slapstick comedy sort of way.
As mentioned, the comedy far outweighs the eroticism in this film, but don't let that fool you; there's plenty of nudity from some insanely hot Swedish girls to be found here. While the amount of such may be disappointing for those of you spoiled by the modern erotic comedies from Seduction Cinema and the like, there should be enough to keep most of the fans of that sort of material happy. And of course, what would the film be without the obligatory alien lesbian scene to cap things off? Indeed, it's delivered, and while it is a bit tame compared to today's offerings, it was still an entertaining scene.
Retro-Seduction Cinema is releasing a double feature DVD next month which contains this movie (obviously) and Run, Virgin, Run. While I haven't watched Run, Virgin, Run yet and therefore can't comment on the quality of it, this movie alone makes the package worth a viewing. You can't go wrong with some truly funny scenes, loads of hot Swedish blondes baring it all, and a German dance scene (complete with suspenders and accordions) that breaks down into an all-out brawl over the attention of these Venusians. 8/10.
OCTOBER 29 VHS MOVIE REVIEW : 2069 A SEX ODYSSEY (1974)
It might seem to many that I have a personal axe to grind with EI Cinema, more specifically their Seduction Cinema company. While I might exaggerate from time to time in my reviews, the reactions to these films I write about are wholly true. But let’s face it; I’m a comedy writer. On the Internet. And a bad one at that. Embellishment is my trade.
I have to admit that Seduction Cinema’s Retro Seduction releases not only intrigue me, they make me giddy. These older films certainly attempt to pack enough entertainment in between the expected flashes of moist, hot flesh. They might not be funny, well made or even good, but they make me feel nostalgic. Nostalgic for that point in my life when I was 12 years old, desperate to see a naked lady and desperate enough that I would attach piles of tin foil and wire hangers to the cable box before praying to the Gods of the Spice Channel to just unscramble for once in my miserable life.
That’s the only level of nostalgia these films work on for me. I have to call bullshit on the idea that these films represent a more “innocent” period of sexuality. When you think about it, this idea is absolutely ludicrous - these films don’t actually represent the full spectrum of sexuality during that point in time, it was simply all they could show you in a movie. People were just as perverse and deviant back then as they are now, films just had to keep it a little more on the down low.
Which makes me wonder just what kind of fucked-up sexual atrocities we’re going to be jerking off to 50 years from now. I don’t want to imagine a point where bukkake and fisting are going to be looked upon as fond, distant memories. What the hell would the sexual kinks of the future be anyway? I honestly hope 50 years from now (and technology permitting) shock value in pornography will rise to the point where we will have the bloated, reanimated corpse of Jenna Jameson in blackface, tap dancing before getting violated and ripped to shreds by a real live Killdozer. That would have me pining for gaping videos.
But that’s 50 years into the future and if I keep watching the movies I’m sent, I probably won’t live past 30. So all I’ve got going for me at the moment is Retro Seduction Cinema titles, specifically this little double feature, 2069: A Sex Odyssey and Run, Virgin, Run.
The main feature on the disc is 2069: A Sex Odyssey, which features a group of five hot Venusian women making their way to Earth in search of “goodies.” By “goodies,” I mean semen, come, spermatozoa, dick snot, man juice – gallons upon gallons of the stuff. This poses a problem since the women manage to crash-land in some podunk West German village with a population of about 12, all of them (to my best guess) the result of generations of frothy Wessi inbreeding.
Of course, due to the crazy clothing they wear (silver suits and matching helmets with visors, which makes them look like they stepped off the stage of an early Devo video) the local townspeople mistake the aliens for a French ski team – confusion that I’ve certainly experienced before. Since the locals believe them to be French, they try to get into their panties almost immediately. However, sex is completely unknown to the girls. As far as they know, the only way to get to the filthy germ is through the use of extraction machines, which are programmed to pull out a gallon from the host before taking a break, which is certainly a challenge I’d take them up on.
Since the machine proves fairly futile, the boss demands the girls throw in the towel and come back to Venus, but boss-woman is too late as every single girl starts to learn about the way of human sexuality, which not only satisfies them completely, but magically wipes their hot alien eye-makeup off. Instead of heading back home, the girls decide they’d rather try and seduce every single man in town during a party, which involves a lot of stripping, a lot of screaming and a lot of throwing.
Not a good movie by a long shot, 2069 still managed to amuse me despite being devoid of laughs. It might not make you guffaw, but damn it this movie has moxie. Every moment is cheerful and good-natured, not only offering up a bevy of bare breasts, but also injecting a little bit of science fiction, a little bit of action (would Seduction Cinema have Misty Mundae in an extended skiing chase that involves her balancing on one ski? God, I hope so), and production values. Yes - production values! Its special effects accomplishments might not be on the level of the film it playfully snatches title inspiration from, but you just don’t expect actual sets and costumes in a movie like this. The level of sophistication might be on the level of a Benny Hill sketch, it might just be a simple fish-out-of-water story that you’ve seen a million times, and my reaction might be due to all the schnapps I consumed before watching it, but 2069 wasn’t just tolerable – it was tolerabletastic!
Lacking the sheer insanity of 2069, Run, Virgin, Run is yet another frolic through West Germany’s baffling mix of humor and erotica. In fact, the credits sequence will probably be the only chuckle you’ll get out of the movie as random women parade round in various states of nudosity to German Oom-pah music. Are you erect yet? Because I’m not.
In the little town of Vöglershausen, a magical wind from the southwest affectionately nicknamed The Fern sweeps the little valley, supposedly making all the young women fertile and ready to accept the love of their suspiciously elderly husbands, who are sent out into the woods to breathe deep this pungent crank-fuel. But wouldn’t you believe it, The Fern is a complete hoax, a sham that allows the women to spend some time with the local blacksmith and bachelor Michael, who doesn’t mind spreading the love around like a West German Johnny Appleseed – only, you know, it ain’t apples he’s seedin’! (EDITOR'S NOTE: I trust my groan was audible from where you're sitting) This leads to a lot of creepy questions, like if Michael is willing to impregnate the entire village, what’s going to happen to these kids when they grow up to be 15 and 16 and they start dating each other? Good thinking Mike, you’ve driven an entire town to incest.
This topic isn’t hit on in the film though. It would rather go down the typical path of the romantic comedy – Michael finds someone to truly love in the mayor’s daughter Gabby, a girl who is both freewheeling and virtuous. Meanwhile, the minister of population has taken an interest in Vöglershausen and decides to make way with his sexy lady secretary (is there any other kind in these movies?) to the little town to get down to the bottom of The Fern, which might be on its way out anyway considering Michael’s dedication to Gabby.
Urgh. Agh! I know I shouldn’t expect much of anything from a tiny company that releases obscure German sex romps, but yikes. I’m quite certain that the sources for this release come from an old videotape Seduction Cinema found, with constant video distortion, even at one point taking up about 1/3rd of the screen.
2069 is presented in what might be unmatted full screen – there’s lots of headspace, but when you consider the fact that it’s a German sexploitation film from 1974, it just might be bad framing. Run, Virgin, Run’s credit sequence might be presented full screen, but once the movie kicks in we get a very thin matting that barely approximates the Europe-y boringness of the 1.66:1 aspect ratio, however it’s obvious the right side of the frame is cut off. Actually, the matte changes and gets thinner from scene to scene as well, making it almost like Dr. Strangelove, but with tits.
Murky and pixelated, but where else are you going to see them?
The audio is presented in who-gives-a-fuck-point-0. It might be Stereo. It might be mono. It might have been recorded using a paper cup and a string. The dubbed voices flow through much better than the video quality, anyway.
Both films are presented only in their American forms. Cut, dubbed and without the ability to watch the original versions of the films, but maybe it’s for the best. One part of me thinks that even though these edited versions of the films are important to hold onto since it’s these films that people will be most familiar with, there should always be an option to view the original, uncut film. The other part of me wonders why the fuck I would ever want to watch an extended version of either of these films.
However, it’s a bit hard to tack down what has been changed, or even if there is an original language track to begin with. The liner notes included consist of an essay about the downfall of the drive-in movie theater – a play on nostalgia that doesn’t really work for me since I live about 20 minutes away from a still operating drive-in. A little real information on these films would have been nice.
Slim pickings this time out, we get the always-present Seduction Cinema Trailer Vault, and a few Radio Spots for Run, Virgin, Run, which plays over video footage of Misty Mundae, who still refuses to take my harassing phone calls.
The films are worth checking out if you’re a fan of the genre, but the video quality is a real detriment. But if you’re looking for something goofy, this disc provides a barrel of goofy. Three stars for the material, but one star to the disc itself.