Tuesday 27 February 2024

In Hot Blood (1968)

In Hot Blood is a wild and crazy 1968 New York-shot sexploitation roughie. 

Nobody seems to be entirely sure of the identity of the director.

It takes a stock-standard exploitation plot line as its basis. It’s a warning of the dangers lying in wait for innocent girls trying to pursue a career in modelling. Such a career inevitably leads to sex, sin and degradation. Innocent young girls should stay on the farm rather than head to the big city in search of fame and fortune.

In this case the innocent girl is named Rita. She quickly finds out that she’ll not only have to take her clothes off, she’ll have to sleep with the photographer. And she’ll have to attend orgies.

Orgy scenes very rarely work since even in the softcore era of the 70s there was a definite limit to what you could show. The orgy scene in this film is quite bizarre. Our heroine spends most of her time eating a banana in what is supposed to be a very suggestive way but the actress just doesn’t seem quite sure how to achieve the intended effect.

The girls try their hands at body painting, a very 60s thing to do. Apparently you get better results if you suck the paintbrush first. Judging by what Rita does to her paintbrush she’s almost certain to create a masterpiece.

It has to be said that Rita doesn’t put up much resistance to temptation. It’s almost as if she enjoys sex and partying and orgies. She makes a couple of friends, Roberta and a black girl named Sandy. These three seem to be a welcome addition to any orgy.

Rita hasn’t realised that Roberta likes girls. She will find out. She doesn’t exactly seem concerned by this revelation. Rita doesn’t seem to be shocked by anything.

There’s also drug-taking at these orgies and that’s what leads to trouble. It leads to some bad craziness.

When danger threatens you’d think Rita and Roberta would take steps to avoid it but instead they take time out for some sapphic love-play. If you’ve ever wondered what lesbians actually do in bed this movie provides the answer. They rub each other’s nipples with ice cubes. It’s one of this movie’s more memorable WTF moments but it’s not the only one.

And then there’s the ending. I definitely didn’t see that coming. I won’t spoil things by even hinting at what happens except to say that it’s pretty wild.

This was 1968, when frontal nudity was still a bit of a rarity in sexploitation movies. That would start to change radically within a year or so. There’s no frontal nudity here but there is a great deal of kinkiness, much of it with an S&M flavour. The kinkiness comes across as bizarre rather than erotic.

The unknown director might not know how to make a coherent movie (or even a technically proficient movie) but he does have a reasonable awareness of how to achieve an atmosphere of decadence. And the movie does have a certain offbeat eroticism. The girls take their clothes off, then they get dressed, then ten seconds later they’re getting undressed again. Because seeing girls undressing is in fact pretty erotic.

There might not be frontal nudity but there’s an abundance of boobs and bare bottoms. The nice thing about this and other 60s sexploitation movies is that what the girls are displaying is what Mother Nature gave them, with (thankfully) no assistance from silicone.

There’s no discernible plot but things keep happening. Those things make no sense but they give the movie a certain crazed energy. Whatever its flaws this movie is not boring.

This movie, like almost all roughies, was shot in black-and-white.

In Hot Blood offers wall-to-wall T&A and some inspired lunacy, and of course it has that wonderful 60s sleaze vibe. It’s pretty entertaining. Highly recommended.

Something Weird released this on a triple-header DVD with The Lusting Hours and Michael Findlay’s The Ultimate Degenerate. The transfer is very good. Happily this DVD is still obtainable (some of those Something Weird discs are now very difficult to find).

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