Directors: Brandon Chase, Barry Mahon and Sid Melton
Something Weird Video/Image Entertainment

You gotta love that old exploitation stand-by of a good girl who's forced to degrade herself and wallow in the gutter to survive. Aah, it's so refreshing to think that countless roadshow rarities and grindhouse gross-outs might have changed the lives of enterprising young teenage girls who were thinking of getting out of the kitchen and making lives for themselves! Something Weird has compiled three lesser-known genre efforts onto this Teen Turmoil Triple Feature disc (never mind that only two of the films center on teen girls).

Meet Judy Collins (no, not THAT Judy Collins, this one's far cuter and has a larger 60s hairdo), an innocent young smalltown girl who's tired of her mundane life and decides to hitchhike her way to New Orleans to find excitement and adventure. Sure, she has a young beau who plans to marry her, but that promising life pales in comparison to the bright lights of the city. Damn you, tempting city! As luck would have it, the first sleazeball who picks up the naive young thang paws her incessantly and pulls over his vehicle to rape her! She manages to subdue bashing his head in with a rock!! Instead of taking this as a bad omen, Judy takes the guy's car and finishes her trek to New Orleans, where she gets a room at a boarding house run by a lecherous old pervert who peeks on her changing clothes. Running's nothing new to her, so she runs from that nightmare and rents another room in a hotel where she befriends Mona, a quite experienced and wrinkly lady of the evening, who introduces her to the world of nude modeling and stripclubs! Oh Judy, will you ever regain your dignity and the love of that sappy beau of yours?

GIRL IN TROUBLE (1963) opens with a "Special Announcement," which is actually the film's theatrical trailer, and is soon awash in over-the-top melodrama anchored by the sincere, but hilarious narration of young Judy, who's dumber than a box of hammers. Listen to her drama queen inner monologues as she is disgusted at the old man peeping at her topless, her excitement at a private modeling appointment for a sweaty perv with a hard-on, and how she becomes increasingly enamored of her own exotic dancing moves. With each new sordid adventure she partakes in, she loses about ten IQ points before she becomes the brassy superstar of the Club Flamingo who proclaims "Let 'em look, but make 'em pay!" Shot on-location in swinging New Orleans, this black-and-white obscurity (letterboxed, too!) features bad dubbing, but actually is superbly photographed, lit, and edited, displaying some finesse behind the cameras. Think BAD GIRLS GO TO HELL directed by Ingmar Bergman! In other words, not an exploitation masterpiece you can afford to miss! Just you remember, ladies: stay in your small town, marry your high school sweetheart, and live your life serving him. If you look for anything else, you'll wind up swinging on a pole topless for gawking old men stuffing dollar bills into your panties! Don't even THINK about it!

Let's move into Barry Mahon territory: abandon all hope ye who enter. Mahon's skinflicks were usually shot on-location in New York City with live sound, populated by some of the most recognizable faces in the sexploitation industry, and none of them very good. In fact, sexploitation aficionados have long hailed Mahon as one of the worst directors in the field and the majority of his filmography an instant cure for insomnia! Here, then, is one of his better-known films, which will pull no punches and hides no surprises for those already familiar with his work.

Lucky Kargo (the leader of THE LOVE CULT!) is an unhappily married businessman who lands his private plane in Las Vegas when the airports in New York are closed due to electrical storms. He encounters a young new girl in town, a high school drop-out who adds some much-needed excitement to his life. She latches onto this new sugar daddy and talks him into letting her stay in his hotel room (with a private pool!), taking her horseback riding, and attending a swinging sex party where Lucky is appalled at his new mistress' love for vibrating lesbians and horny cowboys!

For a 59-minute quickie, GOOD TIME WITH A BAD GIRL (1967) feels much longer. Mahon's trademark "let the cameras roll" camerawork spends a lot of time on admiring the streets of Vegas, characters walking or laying around, and none of the nudity is very sexy, even a go-go dancing nude chick who makes sure to cover her pubic hair for the cameras. The only really great thing about the film is the always reliable library music; Barry could always be trusted to select groovy background music for his snoozers. This is also different from his other films because it was shot on-location in Las Vegas (or at least some of it was), is letterboxed (!), and features none of his stock players (Darlene Bennett, Gigi Darlene, Sharon Kent). It's a painless waste of an hour, but I'd rather re-watch GIRL IN TROUBLE instead.

The oldest film on the triple feature, BAD GIRLS DO CRY (1954), is probably the worst of the trio. Striptease performer Misty Ayers stars as Sally Down, a small-town girl who ventures to Hollywood to become a successful model. She instead finds herself knocked out (the sound effect is hilarious!), jabbed with a heroin needle (!), and kept prisoner in a house of ill repute populated by ugly dames and mustachioed johns. The madam has a strange mouth, half her upper lip appears to be missing, and is a riot when drunk and slurring! One of Sally's regular clients falls in love with her and attempts to whisk her away from the hellhole.

Horrendously dubbed (Doris Wishman-style 10 years earlier!) and overflowing with silly narration, if you thought the 59-minute GOOD TIME WITH A BAD GIRL felt like 90 minutes, the 59-minute BAD GIRLS DO CRY feels like 180! There are lengthy sequences of beautiful Misty disrobing, bathing, and examining herself in the mirror (these could have been stag reels shot for loop arcades), great comic relief with a radio show called "Gene and Jean" ("One of us has to change our name if our marriage is to continue!"), irritating library music, and strangely enough, most of the fades to black seem to be done recently, not in the original version. Distributed by Dave Friedman before he became the Mighty Monarch of the Exploitation Industry, this is an hour you can spend doing something watching GIRL IN TROUBLE again...

The only trailer which appears for the feature films is GOOD TIME WITH A BAD GIRL, which is actually better than the movie! Two heavily panting lovers discuss the film while writhing together in bed (The girl says the film has "a cast of thousands"; there are maybe 10 people in the whole thing!; she also says it's a cowboy movie!). Doris Wishman's BAD GIRLS GO TO HELL is an essential addition to any cult film fan's DVD collection, and the trailer doesn't even begin to explain its insane appeal. Gigi Darlene and Darlene Bennett appear in this one. Barry Mahon's THE DIARY OF KNOCKERS MCCALLA stars the same actress who had a fight with Jake LaMotta via crude insert footage in CONFESSIONS OF A PSYCHO CAT! You know, the one who makes out with her own mirror image and has weird-looking breasts. One of the actors was a NYC nudie regular whose name I can't remember. The library music score and dumb dialogue make this a must-find lost film! PROWL GIRLS is another obscure Barry Mahon New York sexploitation film. KNOCKERS MCCALLA herself has a sex scene in this one, too! This one's lost, too. BAD GIRLS DON'T CRY is hailed as a "Distinguished Motion Picture Event," but it looks very crude and actually is a foreign film with Elsa Martinelli passed off as a sexploitation film.

If you couldn't get enough of Misty Ayers in BAD GIRLS DO CRY, see what she was best-known for in the short "Misty Ayers: Striptease Goddess." Dressed in a flowing black gown, she prances around, flipping her gorgeous blonde locks, before taking off her outfit piece by piece. A familiar gallery of exploitation movie magazine covers is thankfully backed by exploitation radio spots (for flicks like THE BIRTH OF TWINS and WASTED LIVES) rather than the overused theme for BOOBY TRAP. (Casey Scott)