Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Immoral Mr Teas (1959), Russ Meyer.

Crumpled chump, lost in a sea of melons. 

I was curious!  Was it really funny?  

Extremely low-budget looking, shot in four days, it's called the "first authentic American nudie" by Roger Ebert in Kings of the Bs: Working Within the Hollywood System (1975).  Felt to me like a couple of kids running around with a super 8: there's colour but no dialogue, only the Voice of God narration dubbed over some time later (doing a kind of nature-documentary shtick).   Exposition, little that there is, was a bit shaky.  That, or I am a complete idiot -- I couldn't figure out why is there this guy in a faded red jumpsuit and straw hat cycling around with a leather suitcase that contains a dental contraption (what the hell is that thing)!  Obviously, I am not the target audience but here goes.  The point of this film is not what he's selling, it's the fact that there's an off chance that you might catch sight of a boob!  Mr Teas spends his time peeping on women, many of whom are not very carefully dressed.  Culminates in a big daydream involving nekkid ladies enjoying a sunny afternoon, rowing an old boat (splinters?), sitting in the grass (scratchy!) and splashing in one of the dirtiest-looking, algae-covered oxygen deprived ponds ever. 

So, was it funny?  Erm...   This will sound wrong in the head, but I want to compare this film with Jacques Tati's Les Vacances de M. Hulot (1953).  They both feature a pathetic everyman in a hat who runs into silly little situations involving women.  There's visual gags.  They are both gently funny.

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