They say that variety is the spice of life. In a continuing attempt to embrace that variety here with One Movie | Each Day, I’ve decided to dedicate each Wednesday review to the stranger side of cinema, the type of movies that I’d never normally watch, or, at least, admit to watching, but that I’m kind of secretly glad exist. So, in celebration or in condemnation of the eccentric, the odd, the freaky, the kinky, the ghastly, the freaky, the fearful, the flaky, and the freaky, I now present… this, the twenty-sixth edition of Wednesday Weirdness.
Oh, Wednesday weirdness, sometimes you expose me to amazing and strange motion pictures that truly impress and surprise me. Other times you give me poorly dubbed French not-entirely-soft-core porn from the mid-seventies.
If I were to be generous I’d call today’s movie, if I were to be stingy I’d call it pretty lousy pornography. An early effort from noteworthy French Fantastique filmmaker Jean Rollin (although he credits himself under the pseudonym Michel Gentil. The film is ostensibly a crime thriller about two sexually-adventurous young women who get mixed up with some vicious jewel thieves, but what it actually is is some mildly fetishy porn, at least at the beginning. Then Rollin seems to get bored with the sexy stuff, and turns it into what has to be the stupidest crime thriller ever…. Then a head fake back to the pornography, before wrapping up the caper in a stupid little bow, emphasis on the stupid.
There’s basically nothing to recommend about this movie. The plot is both sparse , and nonsensical. The characters are all raging idiots. Continuity problems and technical errors, like inconsistant lighting, abound to the point that I noticed them immediately and repeatedly. The film uses heavy narration to explain whats going in in the first twenty minutes or so, (never a good sign,) then abandons this device.
I’m generally not one to pick on such things but I want to spend a moment on the film’s title. Although it is called Schoolgirl Hitchhikers for its English language release, at no point does anybody in the film do any hitchhiking. I suppose there’s what could broadly be defined as hiking during the opening credits, but that’s about it. Also, not only is there nothing to indicate that the leads are school girls, from the way all the characters behave, I’d say there’s no evidence that any of them have ever come within five hundred feet of any sort of educational facility. In fairness the film’s original French title translates as “Shameless Young Girls”, which actually does fit.
I was going to spend some time outlining the plot. However the paragraph I was drafting was fast shaping up to be nothing but a blow by blow of all the stupid things the characters in the film did. I’ve decided that I just don’t want to do that to you, my loyal readers.
This really is a worthless movie. Although it did manage an R rating from the MPAA in 1976, I’m thinking that it must have been given some leeway based on the assumption that it’s French and arty or something, because it’s really just fillth. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like filth as much as the next guy, but this isn’t even particularly good filth. Maybe it’s just that dirty movies have come a long way since 1973. I’ve certainly seen actual pornography with more believable situations, more sensical storytelling, better acting, and proper lighting.
At the end of the day, my advice is that if you’re looking for an entertaining movie, look somewhere else… anywhere else. If you’re looking for some tittilating porno… there are plenty of better places to find it than this.
Having said all that, for those of you reading this who enjoy movies that are “so bad they’re good” this might be worth checking out. Because I didn’t go into the movie with that expecation, I didn’t think it worked that way when I saw it, however in retrospect, if I’d been in the right situation, this highly mockable movie would most certainly provide some fodder for MST3K-style mockery.
I was originally going to rate this movie as “Avoid Seeing.” However, when I consider the potential (presumably) unintentional humor that could be found in the movie, and the unappolagetic purient appeal, I’ve concluded that rating doesn’t fit. Still, while I could see some reasons why one might want to watch this movie, I can’t honestly describe doing so as beingh “worthwhile,” so I’m going to say that Schoolgirl Hitchhikers is definitely Not Worth Seeing.