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Moonlighting Wives (1966)

DVD Cover (Retro-Seduction Cinema)
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5.4
 / 10
1 vote
Genres:
Drama, Erotic Drama, Sexploitation
Director:
Joseph W. Sarno Joseph W. Sarno
Starring:
Tammy Latour Tammy Latour
Gretchen Rudolph Gretchen Rudolph
John Aristedes John Aristedes
Fatima Fatima
Joe Santos Joe Santos
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Review by Chad
Added: December 27, 2006
Joe Sarno is a man who knows a thing or two about sexploitation fare - after all, he's been pumping out movies for over forty years. He's widely considered to be one of the pioneers in the genre, and while I'm personally not a huge fan of his, I do respect the work that he's done and the name that he's made for himself. With that said, I wasn't too sure what to think about this release before popping it into my DVD player. This film was his first time filming in color and it features an interesting storyline, but again, I've never been a huge fan of his style of film-making. Imagine my surprise when the credits rolled and I found that I had enjoyed the presentation.

Based on actual events that happened in New York during the sixties, the story found within this film tells the tale of a group of housewives who, tired of barely making ends meet, decide to extend their stenography service into a prostitution ring. The idea here is that they can service both the professional and personal needs of their clientèle, have a little fun, and bring it quite the large chunk of change in the process. Led by Joan Rand (Tammy Latour), this service quickly grows in both popularity and size, but it doesn't take long before the police found out about it and set out to shut them down.

Unlike some of Sarno's other offerings, there's actually a solid storyline to be found here that serves as the main attraction instead of a mere afterthought. It's an interesting story in and of itself, but it's made even more interesting when we learn that, with the exception of the ending (which was changed at the request of an investor), the story being told is pretty much the way it really happened. Another thing that immensely helped the story is the fact that the sex and nudity is pretty much non-existent throughout the film. Now, Sarno is one of the big names in sexploitation fare and this movie does focus on sex, but there's nary a glimpse of actual nudity or simulated love-making during the running time. I have no problems with either element and they both have their place, but they sort of kill the flow of a movie when there's an actual storyline to be found, so this decision definitely helped the movie in my humble opinion.

Much as one would expect from a film like this, the acting is hit or miss. Leading lady Tammy Latour (credited here as Diane Vivienne) was actually quite good in her role, and she handled her transition from a normal secretary to a money-hungry sex-worker with ease. There were a few other ladies who were decent enough and there were a couple of not-so-good actresses, but when you compare the acting abilities found here to similar films, you'll find that the performances were actually above average. You'll also find that there are a couple of ladies rounding out the cast that are damned hot even by today's standards, but I suppose that's more of a subjective thing.

Overall, this one was a lot more interesting than I had anticipated, and although there were a few scenes that dragged, I felt that it was a pretty good story once all was said and done. 7/10.
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