Monday, February 22, 2010

She Mob (1968)

Directed by Unknown
Starring Marni Castle, Monique Duval, Twig, Eve Laurie

"Do snakes come out at night?"
"You better believe it."

A Texan production loaded with whacked-out local talent and a ten-gallon hat's worth of crazy, She Mob is one of exploitation cinema's greatest mysteries. There is no director listed anywhere in the credits, which means it could be anyone's doing: Russ Meyer? Doris Wishman? Harry Novak? Orson Welles? Any one of them seems like a reasonable guess. What we do know is that She Mob is a stellar slice of late 60's roughie cinema, a riot of bad hair, revealing lingerie, clumsy ultra-violence, even clumsier sex, shameless overacting, and buckets of ass. It's a gritty melodrama, a goofy spy spoof, grungy sexploitation and a hard-hitting crime flick all rolled into one glorious 82 minute ball of jaw-dropping wonder.

Big Shim (Marnie Castle) is a sweaty, belligerent, bull-dyke prone to wearing leather cone-bras and thigh-high boots. She and her small-but-enthusiastic girl-gang - including a pneumatic, pug-faced pixie named Twig (essayed, naturally, by an actress named Twig) and a beehived blonde with swollen, scarred Frankenboobs named Baby (Eve Laurie, in an awesomely druggy performance) - have just broken out of jail and are laying low in a safe house somewhere on the outskirts of town.

Shim is content with balling Baby on a nightly basis, but the other girls are craving man-meat - they have, after all, been locked up for the past five years - so they whine and complain until Shim breaks down and calls her connection for a rent-a-stud.

Said connection is a superfly man-mountain who refers her to Tony, a high-rent gigolo currently servicing local rich bitch Brenda McClain (also, oddly enough, played by Marnie Castle!). Tony knows Shim from way-back. He agrees to take care of her man-hungry stable for his usual fee.

No sooner has the blouse-wearing Tony entered the She Mob's lair when Shim lays the bad news on him: not only will he be fucking her friends for free, but she's also holding him for ransom. If Brenda does not pay her $100,000 by midnight, Shim promises to turn her man-slut into a "choirboy", which I am assuming is some sort of castration threat.

So that's what's happening there.

Brenda comes home to her swank pad - two TVs! - and looks around for Tony.
"Tony, tony!" She cries. "Did you get your vitamins? I'm ready!"
Alas, Tony is nowhere to be found. Brenda checks her mail and finds Shim's ransom note. Initially she dials up 911, but thinks better of it and hangs up on the cops. And then she calls girl detective Sweety East (the amazing Monique Duval, spoofing then-popular female TV sleuth Honey West) to ask for help.

Sweety East - who may just be my favorite movie character of all time - shows up in a too-small, ass-crack flaunting silver space-girl suit. She also happens to be cradling some sort of jungle cat. A lynx? Ocelot? Something like that. Sweetie seems sort of irritated by Brenda and her dumb problem, but she agrees to take on the case. And then she picks up her bobcat or whatever it is and splits.

Back at Shim's place, the girls all take turns tussling with Tony. But when a suddenly bi-curious Baby joins in for an impromptu three-way, the Boss-Dyke goes bananas, slapping Tony in the face so hard he squirts blood. And then she grinds her cigarette in his crotch. Ouch!

Sweety returns to Brenda's, sans exotic pet. She makes a phonecall to her gadget guy - she needs a shoebox with a homing device in it, which seems like something she could cobble together herself - and then suits up in one of Brenda's ugly rich broad dresses to make the drop-off. For whatever reason, it takes her 7 minutes to put on the dress, and the camera gazes lazily at her naked ass the entire time.

Meanwhile, under the cover of darkness, Baby and Tony try to escape from Shim's clutches. They manage to sneak out of the house, but Tony's car gets stuck in a ditch, so they take off running. Shim and the She Mob chase after them, guns blazing. Disgusted by her lack of loyalty, heartless Shim shoots Baby in the face with her shotgun. Goodnight, Baby.

Tony manages to get back into his car and hauls ass down the highway, but the dope flips his wheels and it blows up, nearly burning down the surrounding woods. Shim drags the battered stud out of the burning vehicle and takes him home.

Then she heads out to the bridge for the pick-up. She smacks the in-disguise Sweetie in the head with her gun and takes the dough. When she gets home, she says, "Well, we're rich. Let's have a party."
And then, for whatever reason, the girls dress the unconscious, half-dead Tony up in women's lingerie.

By the way, once again, a plot device makes for a great excuse to show several minutes' worth of up-close booty. This may very well be the greatest ass-crack movie of all time.

After dressing him up in the undies, the girls string Tony up and whip him. And then Shim stabs him in the guts with her tits. And then she decides to hack his penis off.

And that's just what she does.

Not really. Then Sweety East shows up, and an epic battle between the asscrack detective and the greasy lesbo-beast ensues. And it's as good or as awful as you imagine it is.

Alright, so it's clearly not arthouse material. But for trash-film fans, She Mob is pure bliss. Mr. or Mrs. director, whoever you are, thank you for this loony, wonderful mess. This would be a much darker world without Sweety East.

She Mob is available from Something Weird.

- Ken McIntyre

1 comment:

  1. Awesome film! Where are you now Marnie Castle? Someone please find out!


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