STIR CRAZY (1980) AND SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL (1989). A DOUBLE REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

STIR CRAZY (1980) AND SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL (1989). A DOUBLE REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
STIR CRAZY. (1980) DIRECTED BY SIDNEY POITIER. STARRING GENE WILDER, RICHARD PRYOR, GEORG STANFORD BROWN, CRAIG T. NELSON AND BARRY CORBIN.
SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL. (1989) DIRECTED BY ARTHUR HILLER. STARRING GENE WILDER, RICHARD PRYOR, JOAN SEVERANCE, KEVIN SPACEY AND ANTHONY ZERBE.

I love both of these American comedies and frequently watch them together at Christmas. I don’t mind admitting, though, that both films start out really strong, with terrific comedy performances from the two leads, and then they kind of lose their way and become a wee bit confusing and tiresome. The performances of the two leads, however, are most likely what you’ll remember about the films so it’s all good.

STIR CRAZY sees Wilder and Pryor take on the roles of two best friends, a down on their luck scriptwriter and aspiring actor, who get sentenced to 125 years in prison after being mistaken for two violent bank robbers dressed as chickens. (It’ll make sense when you watch the film, lol.) The prison is the kind of one with chain gangs doing hard labour in the blazing sun and guards whose truncheons seem to be permanently set to whuppin’…

While inmates of this particularly tough prison, they make friends with other convicts and impress the warden greatly with Gene Wilder’s prowess on the mechanical bull. When said warden arranges for Wilder’s character to take part in the annual prison rodeo, a small select group of prisoners, Wilder and Pryor included, arrange to use the rodeo as a chance to break out…

Despite being a convicted criminal, Gene Wilder still manages to have a romance with JoBeth Williams, the mom from POLTERGEIST, who’s playing his lawyer’s assistant. The two lads together also make firm friends with Grossberger, the most feared inmate in the prison, and they find that he’s surprisingly loyal and blessed with a beautiful singing voice. Seemingly, all he needed was for someone to just reach out to him…

My favourite part of the film is probably when Gene Wilder takes a list of his prison grievances to the warden, with the honest expectation that the warden will be only too delighted to discuss the ways in which he can help to enhance and improve the prison experience of the men in his care. Set that night-stick to whoppin’, boys… I also love Craig T. Nelson, aka COACH and the dad from POLTERGEIST, as the warden’s bullying second-in-command.

In SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL, the two lads play a blind man (Pryor) and a deaf man (Wilder) who accidentally get mixed up with a trio of murderous thieves and have to go on a mission to clear their own names (yep, they’ve been wrongly accused again!) and, hopefully, catch the thieving real killers as well.

Kevin Spacey is quite good as one of the villains, with the gorgeous leggy Joan Severance on duty as the eye-candy. The scene where Gene Wilder threatens to ‘shoot’ a nudie Joan Severance with his erection is very funny.

It’s also the film in which are uttered the immortal words, ‘Fuzzy Wuzzy was a woman,’ and the scene in which Gene Wilder freaks out at the thought that he’s somehow contracted the ‘mens rea’ always makes me laugh out loud.

I don’t much care for Anthony Zerbe as the mysterious Mr. Sutherland, the villains’ boss, as I’m all worn out by the chase at this point. (Don’t get me wrong, watching a blind man and a deaf man attempt to drive a getaway car through downtown New York is pretty hilarious.)

And I was completely underwhelmed at the moment it’s revealed that the gold coin everyone’s been chasing is a ‘room temperature superconductor.’ Are we supposed to be impressed? Talk about meh.

Wilder and Pryor are always funny, though, and lovable and cuddly and, in the case of Gene Wilder in particular, surprisingly sexually attractive. I’ve always wanted to just give him a big hug, gaze deep into his brilliant blue eyes while gently touching his curly hair and then take it from there, lol.

Both men are great comedic partners, and the way they vibe off each other more than makes up for any deficiencies in plot. The scene where they meet at Wilder’s news kiosk is so funny, and ditto the one where Richard Pryor is masquerading as a Swedish sex therapist for geriatrics. The bit where he says, in authentic Swedish Chef from THE MUPPET SHOW pidgin English, ‘Mostly, they just like fucking…!’ is just a priceless moment in the film.

Happy New Year, anyway. Let’s welcome 2022 with open arms and open minds. I won’t challenge the Universe to fisticuffs by saying that things can’t get any worse, so instead I’ll just say that we all sincerely hope that they’ll get a little easier.

  AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.
 
Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, poet, short story writer and film and book blogger. She has studied Creative Writing and Vampirology. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, women’s fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO
Her debut romantic fiction novel, ‘THIRTEEN STOPS,’ is out now from Poolbeg Books:
https://www.amazon.com/Thirteen-Stops-Sandra-Harris-ebook/dp/B089DJMH64
The sequel, ‘THIRTEEN STOPS LATER,’ is out now from Poolbeg Books:
 https://www.amazon.com/dp/1781994234

BARE BEHIND BARS. (1980) REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

BARE BEHIND BARS. (1980) DIRECTED AND WRITTEN B Y OSWALDO DE OLIVEIRA. STARRING MARIA STELLA SPLENDORE, MARTA ANDERSON, DANIELLE FERRITE AND NEIDE RIBERO.

REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

‘In a South American prison, life is cheap but sex is cheaper…’

Not to be confused with the animal exploitation film, BEAR BEHIND BARS (relax, there’s no such thing; I made it up!), this is a sexploitation flick of the ‘women in prison’ genre. It was banned by the British Board of Film Classification in 1994, though that’s since been reversed, I do believe.

There’s no excuse for anyone to be watching this film, really, except that it’s chock-a-block with female nudity, lesbianism and simulated sex, both heterosexual and same-sex. No gay men though, only heaps and heaps of lesbians!

The scenes of nudity and sex are threaded together loosely by a thin plot involving a sadistic female prison warden, a prostitution ring and an escape attempt, but don’t worry! I promise you that nothing as tiresome as a plot will get in the way of the bouncing tits and jiggling asses you’ve come prepared to see.

The film is set in a women’s prison in Brazil. Conditions are disgusting and insanitary and the food is slop. The staff are all-female, all good-looking and their blouses are always falling open to reveal braless bosoms. They carry whips, which they’re not shy of using, and they like to watch the inmates showering, doing nude keep-fit in the dreaded exercise yard and getting off with each other.

The inmates are all young and beautiful with perfect, sun-tanned bodies. Nearly all of them sport the white bits round the hips and over the boobs that imply lots of bikini-clad sunbathing. They wear thin shirt-dresses and are forbidden to wear underwear because it makes it easier for them to hide contraband like weapons and drugs. Yes, easier, lol.

They all have thick dark bushes of pubic hair because women still had pubes back then. They weren’t ashamed of them because everyone had them. It’s only the modern era that has taught women that hair anywhere but on your head is a bad thing and must be immediately decimated.

There’s absolutely no privacy for toileting or bathing in the prison; everyone has to muck in together and, if you saw the state of the place, you’d agree with me that ‘muck’ was really the operative word.

The ice-blonde, alcoholic aristocratic female head warden, Sylvia, likes to get down and dirty with the new inmates. She also likes whipping them and inventing sadistic tortures for them, and she sells some of the choicest plums in the prison- by which I mean the girls- to rich millionaires as sex slaves with no future. Inmates are often ‘accidentally’ whipped to death and must be buried, with all records, in the already overcrowded prison cemetery…

The prison nurse, Barbara, is a Marilyn Monroe lookalike and soundalike. ‘I simply adore raspberry pudding,’ she says in a breathy, baby-voice while gorging from what we’re supposed to think looks like a carton of spunk, for crying out loud!

She hasn’t a clue how to take someone’s blood pressure but she knows how to check a pussy or a crack for a knife, a razor-blade or a bag of weed, and also how to take sexual advantage of a nubile young newbie who’s far from home and crying out for a bit of comfort.

There’s male-female sex in the film too, in the form of an hilarious encounter between a prison officer and a dark, hairy, heavily-moustached local man who comes to the prison to deliver a consignment of brooms, of all things.

He grabs the prison officer’s breasts from behind while she’s ticking off figures on a list, and the next thing you know, she’s having wild, uninhibited nudie sex on the prison store-room floor with her exceptionally hirsute, sad-faced middle-aged Romeo.

Together they enact pretty much every position from the Kama Sutra, including the very hairy one known as sixty-nine. When her lugubrious Lothario eventually takes his leave, he wishes the prison officer he’s just royally shafted ‘a Merry Christmas to you,’ and she does the same. Funny isn’t the word…!

There are a lot of scenes showing derelict and dilapidated shanty towns and the most abject Brazilian poverty in the bits where some prisoners manage to escape and see a bit of the countryside around the prison, but I’m not convinced that any real attempt at social commentary is intended here.

I forgot to mention that here, the ‘screws’ or prison guards have sex with the inmates too. There’s one mad scene where a gasping, half-naked ‘screw’ is standing splay-legged and orgasmic outside a locked cell while hands come out of the cell’s food hatch to manhandle her pussy and breasts.

Still, it’s not as mad as the scene where someone’s carved a perfectly acceptable, if oversized, knob, to use as a dildo, out of an actual pineapple! Still, it makes a change from the whole prison having to share the only other dildo all the time, taking turns and then passing it from cell to cell on a string…

They’re all mad in this prison, if you ask me, sex-mad, and, if you’re planning to watch this silly, filthy movie, then you’d damn well better be sex-mad too, that’s all I’m saying…!

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, poet, short story writer and film and book blogger. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, women’s fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

Her debut romantic fiction novel, ‘THIRTEEN STOPS,’ is out now from Poolbeg Books.