Russ Meyer's most preposterous film, if you can imagine that. A self-designated "Greek Chorus" (Kitten Natividad) is our guide through events in a Northwestern logging community. Here, Paul (Robert McLane) and Alice (Janet Wood) own and operate a diner. Paul makes extra money organizing S&M scenes for local recluse Adolph Schwartz (Edward Schaaf), who speaks in...read more
Russ Meyer's most preposterous film, if you can imagine that.
A self-designated "Greek Chorus" (Kitten Natividad) is our guide through events in a Northwestern logging community. Here, Paul (Robert McLane) and Alice (Janet Wood) own and operate a diner. Paul makes extra money organizing S&M scenes for local recluse Adolph Schwartz (Edward Schaaf), who speaks
in German and looks an awful like a certain rumored-to-be-deceased Nazi leader. After their latest session is concluded, Schwartz is murdered (via the introduction of a piranha into his bathwater) by a hooded stranger.
Horny cop Homer Johnson (Monte Bane) spies lovely Margo Winchester (Raven de la Croix) jogging in the road. She refuses his offer of a ride, but accepts one from local bad boy Leonard Box, who takes her into the woods and rapes her. Margo accidentally kills him while fighting him off. Homer agrees
to concoct a story to cover the incident up, in exchange for Margo's favors.
Margo takes a day job at Alice's Cafe, causing such an explosion of business that Alice and Paul decide to expand the cafe into a roadhouse. On opening night, Margo wears an outfit so sexy that it inflames the passions of Rafe, a lumberjack of monstrous size and strength. He rapes Margo on a
table, despite the efforts of everyone to quell him. After carrying Margo and Alice off into the woods, Rafe is finally brought down by Homer and a chain saw.
Back home in her shower, Margo is attacked by a hooded figure with a knife. It is Alice, the murderer. In an openly satirical sequence, the two women run naked through the woods, tying up the loose ends of the story by discussing various plot complications hitherto unknown to the viewer.
Though it was filmed in the same Canadian locations as his biggest hit, VIXEN (1968), the Meyer film that UP! most resembles is CHERRY HARRY AND RAQUEL (1969). Both feature footage of a typical Meyer amazon cavorting nude while a narrator fills us in on what's happening in the story. But where
Meyer was purportedly trying to compensate for footage that had been lost in the earlier film, UP! seems to have been designed this way on purpose.
Even though it is one of Meyer's most explicit films, it is perhaps the one least able to bear the stamp of "pornography." Beginning with the opening scene, in which a Hitler surrogate is whipped and sodomized, almost nothing here seems designed to arouse the prurient (if anything, that opening
scene must seem like a slap in the face to the raincoat crowd). Mostly UP! finds Meyer indulging his peculiar sense of humor, which includes aged Nazis, cartoonish violence, and pompously purple narration (the talky conclusion is a gem or parody). As always, the film is comparatively sumptuous for
this genre, Meyer being responsible for the photography and editing as well. The cast of unknowns features some attractively fresh faces: Raven de la Croix is one of Meyer's most spectacular heroines, while the open-faced Janet Wood seems to have wandered on to the wrong set (and thankfully so).
Overall, a movie best viewed with the indulgent air one would bring with a six pack and a blanket to the drive-in. (Graphic violence, extensive nudity, sexual situations, extreme profanity.)
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