Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Movie Review: Mondo Freudo (1968)

Mondo Freudo
Mondo Freudo - Mondo movie from Lee Frost and Bob Creese - DVD artwork

Directed by Lee Frost
Produced by Bob Creese

The mysterious unseen narrator takes us on a trip around the world and back again to showcase the depravity of today's society. It starts off nice and mellow, just a day at the beach quite literally, with hundreds of upstanding citizens soaking up the rays. But once night falls, it's a different story altogether, and where children built sandcastles only a few hours before an “unsuspecting” young couple are recorded copulating and gyrating in the moonlight.

After the sex-on-the-beach bit (more like foreplay on the beach), we're whisked across the globe to witness lesbianism, a topless bikini fashion show, watusi dancing, topless watusi dancing, body painting in beatnik nightclubs, teenagers cruising Hollywood Boulevard, a black mass, S&M in Japan, poverty and the slave trade in Mexico, and a whole lot of prostitution and burlesque-style strip teases. All of the scenes are, unfortunately, staged and very poorly so. They're extremely tame as well, which makes it even more unwatchable.

It's hard for me to picture this film as ever having had an audience. The purpose of Mondo is to “shock & titillate” you with documentary footage, but I can't imagine young people being shocked by these scenes even when first released. Half of the movie was about the moral decay of young people as it were, so they've seen all of this before, and I doubt there were adults that paid to see this at the time. Perhaps if they had bothered to film real events as they had claimed, it would have been much more effective, but as it stands, this was nothing but a series of PG-13 unrelated skits badly acted out and strung together by a professional(?) voice-over artist.

Don't waste your money.

80 minutes
United States

Hump Day: Not as bad as we make it out to be, not as much fun as it sounds.

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