Apr 26, 2019

The Curious Female (1970)

It's the year 2427 and the inhabitants of earth are ruled by a mega-computer.  A small cult illegally watches films from the twentieth century - one being about a trio of virgins who seek deflowerment. Starring Angelique Pettyjohn wearing outfits every bit as snazzy and sexy as the ones she wore on Star Trek.

 The title credits are a groovy psychedelic day-glo trip.

Liana (Bunny Allister) is the leader of the underground cult, providing illegal copies of 20th century films for her cult members to watch.

 Jorel (David Westberg) sets up the projector while Liana explains what they're about to see.

 One of the cult's new recruits, Susan (Angelique Pettyjohn), is unfamiliar with the ancient customs, so has a lot of questions. [Star Trek fans will no doubt be reminded of the episode: The Gamesters of Triskelion) where Pettyjohn wore that iconic aluminum foil bikini.]

The movie on the agenda today is from 1969 and is about a computer dating service.  A man named Mr. Burton (Sebastian Brook) requests a virgin for his computer date. Bixby (Michael Greer) hands him a folder on a girl named Joan Wilde...

Meet Joan and her boyfriend Paul; they plan to be married when Paul finishes medical school. Note that these two are played by the same actors who play Liana and Jorel - David Westberg and Bunny Allister.

Paul breaks up with Joan when she says she wants to wait until they're married before having sex.  Her mother (Elaine Edwards) overhears and comes to her daughter's aid.

Mrs. Wilde receives a phone call from the computer dating service.  Somehow this makes everything suddenly okay.

Back to 2427 and the cultists have questions about all these strange matters - marriage, dating, virginity,... what does all this mean?

Let me just stop here and point out how weird this is.  This film is an anthology of love stories tied together by the computer dating service.... but for some reason, the film's producers wanted that to be viewed through the eyes of cult members of the future? In other words, this would have been a perfectly fine anthology in the vein of Love American Style, all with the computer dating wraparound story... without need of an overlying sci-fi plot device.  Perhaps it makes it a bit more campy and fun, but it still makes no fucking sense.  Moving on...

Mr. Burton is given files on two other other virginal candidates... 

 Susan Rome (Angelique Pettyjohn) and Pearl Lushcomb (Charlene Jones).  They both arrive at the computer dating service in response to the request.

A cross-dresser (supposedly providing comic relief)  is horrified to learn that there are still virgins in 1969.

 Susan, Joan and Pearl are taken to Bixby's office.  He explains that this Mr. Burton is a fine well-to-do gentleman, who has requested that his date specifically be a virgin.

Strangely enough, the three girls agree to this competition of sorts - to become the choice of the mysterious Mr. Burton.

The girls, realizing they may be the last virgins in LA, or on the planet, form a friendship.  Joan invites Susan and Pearl over to skinny dip in her pool.

The girls burst through the backdoor totally naked, and it's filmed in slow motion.  Unfortunately, it's filmed from a distance, so the full frontal nudity is hard to see.

 Pettyjohn provides the lion's share of the nudity around the pool.

 Susan gives a dramatic speech about how they're freaks of nature; the last american virgins.

 The girls sunbathe and discuss their lot in life.

Pettyjohn gets about as close as possible to showing pubic hair without actually showing the full monty.

 She makes a case to the girls that they should stop being such prudes and maybe live a little.

Joan is starting to buy Susan's argument.

 We're periodically brought back to 2427 where the cultists ask stupid questions - I guess to remind us that there's this pointless overlapping sci-fi story.

From here, we watch the three girls go their separate ways trying to get discover love 1970s style.  Susan hooks up with Mr. Burton.

Burton, the guy that started this whole deal with his request for virgins, turns out to be quite wealthy.  He wants Susan to be his assistant.

Her story ends with her living a hedonistic life, tripping on acid.  Her last words being "I'm free!"

 Pearl develops a relationship with a white girl - Andy (Julie Conners). 

 One of the grooviest scenes in the film is where Pearl and Gloria meet - a psychedelic-a-go-go club.

 With live music - they want to be Manfred Man, but no dice.

 Pearl is attacked by a couple of racist bikers at a dive bar, but a dashing gent comes to her aid.

Pearl was attracted to the guy - but she's also attracted to women.  How can this be?  Andy gives her a massage to make those pesky questions go away.

I do like how the actresses in the 2427 segments are the same girls - here we can see Andy and Pearl.

Joan has the worst luck.  She checks in with ol' Paul to find he's screwing ugly prostitutes.  Then when she goes on an actual date, the guy thinks she's a whore and tries to rape her.

 Joan is traumatized.  The guy, when he realizes she's not a hooker, ushers her out the door quick-like.

Joan runs home and cries to her mom (providing a helluva upskirt).  But here's an odd thing....

 Mrs. Wilde keeps trying to have sex with some dude but keeps getting interrupted by her needy daughter.  It's supposed to be funny (I think).

What's unexpected is that actress Elaine Edwards provides a nude scene.  This lady acted throughout the fifties in mainstream stuff like Perry Mason, Make Room for Daddy, and a good bit of westerns.  Her last film is this?... and with boobs.

Later, Mrs. Wilde tries to get it on with Paul.  She tells him that she'll just keep him satisfied until he and Joan get married.

Paul realizes how fucked up this is, and tells her to get lost.  He then returns to Joan and they get married.

It ends with the master computer discovering the cult's illegal activity and everyone is arrested.  Look who's playing the policeman - it's Bixby!  THE END

This was so bizarre, so painfully bad, so campy and sexy - I couldn't take my eyes off the screen. A treasure that's been hidden far too long, and I'm so glad to bear witness to its offbeat charms.


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