Wednesday, September 26, 2012

TOO HOT TO HANDLE - Eric Spear/Bill McGuffie - "Playgirl After Dark" (1960)

Tonight's feature was originally titled "Too Hot To Handle," but by the time it got to the shores of America, it had already been renamed as the much more insipidly stupid "Playgirl After Dark" which as far as the movie is concerned, actually has no meaning at all!

Okay, I feel kinda ripped off! As you can plainly see, "Too Hot To Handle" was originally released in glorious colour! Now down here in The Dungeon, we love black and white flicks as much, or more than anybody, but if it was in colour to begin with, it sure would have been nice to see it that way, but I guess it has something to do with getting it played on the TV before any colour broadcasts existed!! A year earlier the undisputed #1 blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe was in a comedy entitled "Some Like It Hot!" Just let me know if you think it's some kind of odd coincidence that "Too Hot To Handle" was released the following year!!!

The weirdest thing is that this is not a bad movie, and it has Jayne Mansfield AND Christopher Lee in it! What a wonderful pair of icons to see on the big screen together!!

Leo Genn is strip club owner Johnny Solo, and that's just the way he likes it, alone! How old do you have to be to know what Leo is doing with his hands? Something quite popular with the kids back in the day that has never been resurrected again as far as I know! Check this out! Leo was in the beyond classic 1956 film "Moby Dick," and his character was known as Starbuck, which means that everything in his possession would be Starbuck's!!

Christopher Lee's character is known as Novak, and he is not only Johnny Solo's right hand man, he's also the MC at Johnny's strip club in Soho known as "The Pink Flamingo!" I wonder what was more eclectic in 1960, Soho, or New York's Greenwich Village?

Jayne Mansfield has the role of Midnight Franklin, Johnny Solo's main squeeze, and the top act in his club!! Johnny's nickname for her is 12 O'Clock!!

"Too Hot To Handle" could easily be considered a film noir musical! Jayne does 4 numbers, and there's a good portion of 4 or 5 of the other girl's acts! The guys in the audience are obviously impressed with Jayne's abundant talents! Va-Va-Voom!! Smoke 'em if you gottem!!

The Soho guys in this act are getting way overheated themselves! The too cool title song, "Too Hot To Handle" was written by Eric (FROZEN ALIVE) Spear, and Bill (DALEK'S INVASION EARTH: 2050 A.D.) McGuffie! Jayne also performs "You Were Made For Me," "Monsoon," and "Midnight!" So why would you change the title to "Playgirl After Dark" when the title song is obviously called "Too Hot To Handle?" Beats the Hell out of me!!

I'm thinking there was some kind of identity crisis in 1960 swingin' England!

Dirty Novak gets a little uptight when Sheldon (13 Demon Street) Lawrence as Diamonds Dielli, the owner of the club across the street named "The Diamond Horseshoe" shows up to talk a little turkey, since Novak is working all the angles and both sides of the street!!

A ransom note is then delivered to Johnny via hatchet mail, but after they make the delivery, the hoodlums find only a satchel full of Midnight's pictures, and no money!

Johnny Solo's got all kinds of class strippers in his joint!! Not as classy as in "The Monster And The Stripper," but class just the same, like this gal and her original 'maybe I'll get out of bed today' act!!

I don't think I need to explain the quantum phenomenon that breaks the conformal symmetry of the classical theory of this scene!

Midnight's act is quite interactive! I hope they kept a doctor on the premises or at least an ambulance out in the parking lot!!

Diamond's boys were pretty pissed off about the whole money switcheroo, and bust up Johnny and his place pretty bad!

But Johnny Solo's a tough old geezer, and if he gets the jump on you instead of vice versa, he's a got a pretty good right, and one mean bitch-slap of a left!

There's only one word to describe this scene, BUSTED!

And now you know where the term 'headlights' is derived from! Good lighting!!

Johnny was pretty cool for the most part, but sometimes he was a cold-hearted sumbitch, so after he basically pimps out one of his girls to one of his fine upstanding customers who turns out to be a psycho, everything goes into the toilet!

The jig is up, and Johnny Solo's gig is over!

Honestly, I didn't realize Jayne Mansfield was such a well-rounded actress! This is not the tale of some high-pitched ditzy blonde, but the story of one strong-willed woman in a sleazy environment! There's no actual nudity, but it's a very well made and risque film for it's time! As a final notation, let me just say that Director Terence Young went on to direct three of the best ever James Bond movies, "Dr. No," "From Russia With Love," and "Thunderball" and maybe that makes more sense!

Here's one last reminder of why they need to release this film in glorious Eastman colour!!!


AManCalled Da-da said...

"colour"? are you boys canadian? where can da-da join?

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

It's the King's English just like on the title card, Moot point, it's in black and white, something Da-Da should understand!

AManCalled Da-da said...

Sorry. Da-da's bandages sometimes get a little too tight.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

No prob Da-da, I have the same problem with thumb screws!!

Unknown said...

I love Sir Christopher lee and all his films, i cannot understand why the film Too hot to handle says Eastman Colour when the film is Black/white, anyway Christopher has a wonderful singing voice, i have been a serious fan of him since 1958 i have so far got 169 of his films on DVD i have no favourites.

EEGAH!! said...

No doubt about it, Chris Lee is always great! If you'll re-read the first paragraph, you'll see my explanation about the black and white/color thing.

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