Saturday, April 11, 2009

PAROXISMUS - Mike Hugg, Manfred Mann, Stu Phillips, Barbara McNair - "Venus In Furs" (1969)

Now how the Hell can you go wrong with a beautifully shot, supremely esoteric tale of mystery about a jazz trumpeter, filmed by Jesus Franco, and starring James Darrin??? The answer is, you can't!!! "Venus In Furs" is a great film, and once again, I gotta say, this is a lucky time to be living when films like this can just be delivered to your door for an astronomically low price! Not that very long ago, if you wanted to see a film like this, it was like tough grunt! Wait for it to come to your local art theatre or college campus, a few years later, you might have been able to get it on beta or VHS, but it would probably cost a fortune, and the quality wouldn't even be that good! So all us movie lovers are really blessed to live in this time!


I'm not going to try and explain much about this film, but I will tell you, there's a lot of great music, and it all starts with James as Jimmy Logan, digging up his horn where he had buried it on the beach in Instanbul!!

It doesn't take long before James finds a dead body washed up on the beach, and we're about to find out that Maria Rohm as Wanda Reed, ain't no Gidget, that's one thing for sure!!

"Paroxismus" also features Herr Klaus Kinski, and anytime Klaus is in a movie, it always ups the ante on the weirdness factor a notch or two!! No exception here!!

When Wanda starts showing up at the gigs, Jimmy rightfully gets really confused!

So, just to keep it lively, Jesus moves the whole scene to Rio, and by now, it should be pretty obvious, the music isn't going to stop any time soon!!

And as a matter of fact, Jimmy has a singer girlfriend in Rio named the lovely Rita, played by multi-talented jazz vocalist Barbara McNair, who shows you that Shirley Manson wasn't the first female singer to writhe on the floor while delivering the vocal goods!!

Just one more reason this is such a damn fine film is a lot of the music was written and delivered by Mike Hugg and Manfred Mann of the original Manfred Mann Band who everyone knows because of their major hit "Do Wah Diddy Diddy!" Here's an interesting little side note. "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" was actually a cover tune, having been originally recorded (but it wasn't a hit) by the all girl group "The Exciters" who everyone knows for their hit single "Tell Him" in 1963! In 1965 Phil Anastasia recording as Dean Parrish would record an answer version cover of the tune, and call it "Tell Her!" Whew!!!

It just keeps going, and getting weirder with more music and more Wanda!!

In the end, Jimmy ends up back on the beach in Instanbul, metaphorically speaking!!! You can thank Jesus!!!

1 comment:

RODAN! said...

I got to spend a day with Klaus Kinski on the set of THE TIME STALKERS, I had a small part, and, I can definitely say that he was slightly nutz! He drove a 3-wheeler through the our lunch setup at high speed!! The weird smile on his face was more than a little scary... He was a cool guy, just different!!

Monster Music

Monster Music
AAARRGGHHH!!!! Ya'll Come On Back Now, Y'Hear??