The Boob Tube: Judy (1969) + The Night Hustlers (1968)


A predator stalks Boston attacking beautiful young.  He is vicious and brutal and his actions are fueled by hatred for the fairer sex.  A young socialite is left raped, battered and abused but her wealthy father does not want the family name to be splashed all over newspapers.  He hires tough ex cop Gunner Sloan (Dave Haller) to get to the bottom of the case but the attacks grow increasingly violent with each woman he attacks.  The man is going to be hard to catch especially as the victims start piling up but Gunner was fired for not playing by the rules and is game for this challenge.  Rough and tumble tactics help him along the way but when his main squeeze Velvet (Sandy O’Hara) it becomes personal.  The killer is always a step ahead of Sloan but he manages to keep close on his heels.  The question is will he be able to stop him before he comes back to finish off Velvet? 

JUDY is an odd film to say the least.  This sparsely shot and extremely low budgeted roughie thriller is an entertaining ride.  The characters are all cookie cutter archetypes going about there business with a thin story draped over them.  It still works though.  The titular Judy (Judith Lowe) is the taut and tan secretary of a  psychiatrist.  She appears two or three times in the course of the film leaving the title a bit of a mystery.  She has a tryst with Sloan and then a lengthy lesbian love scene with her roommate.  The film doesn’t take itself too seriously but plays it straight with an off screen character named Harriet Nelson getting knocked off.  The girls are attractive and are quite game at jumping into the soft scenes and though they are finished off by the serial rapist you can sometimes see them breathing after being strangled.  Cheap sets and amateur actors delivering stilted and wooden dialogue abound in this small time flick.  It happens that director David Hanson’s only other credit is NIGHT OF THE BLOODY TRANSPLANT.

One of the more shocking aspects of JUDY is the way it depicts the treatment of lesbians.  Quite discordant considering the opening is an extended interracial scene shooting for the most lurid heights, or depths apparently, that it can achieve.  The above mentioned Harriet Nelson is derided for her orientation and Gunner ends up slapping Judy around telling her he will have to out her to her employer.  This really kicks up the roughie vibe to a sleazier level than it usually is in most flicks.

The Night Hustlers

Bobby O’Donald was a veritable auteur when it came to the production of his sexploiter THE NIGHT HUSTLERS.  Writing, producing, directing and editing, he has cobbled together a series of vignettes bound together by a loose frame story.  The narrative, if it can be called that, follows a French author entertaining a pair of vice detectives hoping to collect some stories from them.  After each story the get together is interrupted by the odd phone call from a busty naked woman seeking a date!  The first tale concerns an undercover officer stuck participating in jazz and drug fueled swinging orgies with eight or so people.  Needless to say the police have to stomp out that kind of criminal activity gunning down a couple of the miscreants. The next sordid story involves a raucous go go club of some type in what appears to be someone’s bedroom…not much of budget here so sets are minimal at best.  Not only does the club offer strip teases but it also includes half naked men pole dancing and brawling.  The patrons are more engrossed by the homoerotic fisticuffs than the busty naked blonde writhing around to the side.  Another vignette involves a gin joint jazz, singing and dancing.  The dancing provided by the four least talented and most out of sync dancers ever.  Each doing their own thing and all the ladies end up topless before the night is over.  Sadly the police officers have to leave at this point as an officer needs assistance nearby. 

Clocking in at about an hour THE NIGHT HUSTLERS is light fare.  The story plays out as a comedy in that a writer is seeking a story and as a wealthy playboy is also seeking a girl for the night.  The cops dish some of the story for him and after all the topless women have called him he finds his night’s entertainment in the buxom form of his redheaded secretary.   Like the first feature, this picture is a nightmare of warm colors and wainscoting.  It is definitely a product of its time. Lee Markowitz gives a shimmy and shake and writhes like a discount Pat Barrington.  All the acting is atrocious, each character having a different accent from the last.  French, Southern, high society, low class it’s all over the place.  The only thing the gals had in common is most of them looked pretty good nekkid.  Not all, but most. 

Vinegar Syndrome’s latest installment of their Drive-In Collection line is a fun oddity worth checking out for fans of off kilter sexploiters or roughies.  Neither film is great.  Hell neither film is good but as a double feature of kitsch and fun they serve quite well.  Check ’em out.  They are available direct from Vinegar Syndrome here.  Check out the trailer below.

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