Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Drive-In Collection: Anthony Spinelli's Expectations / Confessions

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Director: Anthony Spinelli

Cast: Chris Cassidy, Delania Raffino, Joey Silvera, John Leslie

Vinegar Syndrome / All Region / Unrated / 1.85:1 widescreen / Mono / 138 minutes

Extras: None

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Adult film director Anthony Spinelli (born Samuel Weinstein) isn't really a household name unless you are somewhat of a connoisseur of porn, which I am not. Of course I love the 42nd Street fare like the films of Shaun Costello (Water Power, Forced Entry) and the art house erotica of Radley Metzger aka Henry Paris (The Opening of Misty Beethoven, The Image) but other than those and a few classics I am pretty ignorant of the deep roots of classic XXX cinema. But with home video companies like Vinegar Syndrome putting out some righteous releases, I will be a pro in no time. This first release of their "Drive-In Collection" includes two films from director Anthony Spinelli, both released theatrically in 1977. The two movies follow a similar theme in that women are bored and unhappy in their current sexual relationships and want something different.

In Expectations Margo is a rich woman who tires of her humdrum lavish life, so she meets and decides to switch lives with the swinging, carefree spirit Montana. The rules are simple; no contact for the duration of the "game" and you must stay true to your role as the other woman. Margo's (I will use their real name as to not be too confusing) first encounter is with a man who was set to meet Montana on a blind sex date. The guy turns out to be a real ruffian and puts her through the paces, which she seems to enjoy. Montana on the other hand is faced with the abrupt, pushy, eye-patch wearing brother of Margot and must decide whether fucking him is crossing a line. Obviously being the free-wheeling slut she is, she decides to go for it. It gets really weird when she begins to talk and act like Margot, getting into an incestual gray area. Breaking the rules, Margot calls home after being manhandled and finds that her brother is now involved, freaks out and runs home. The end is abrupt and out of left field but totally fits the tone of Expectations.

The second feature, Confessions (aka Confessions of a Woman), is a bit more simple and the plot is more straightforward. Beth is a bored rich socialite (see a pattern here?) wife who wants some excitement in her life. Anonymous sex and prostitution are on the agenda but she soon learns that the security of home is not as bad as she thought. Confessions is a strange one; it's not sexy in the least, in fact some scenes are downright gross. Firstly, leading lady Kristine Heller, who is in every sex scene, is average at best. Some of the men she gets down and dirty with are worse than that. Then mix in a scene of close-up shots of eating intercut with a blow-job scene, add some light S&M horsey play and a great shot of Beth getting a licking standing against a wall between portraits of Jane Fonda and Marlon Brando and you have one interesting adult movie.

The picture quality of both films are very good. They have a film-like quality complete with the occasional scratch or jump but for the most part they are sharp and vibrant. The slight imperfections don't detract from the viewing experience, the opposite in fact. With the more than adequate mono soundtracks, both movies in this fantastic double feature from a very interesting and prolific director are more than a vintage adult film fan (both beginner and veteran) can expect or ask for.

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