By: JosieCotton


Before there were trendy crack whores and lame celebrity 'bad girls' there were real man-killing pycho bitches who walked the earth.. well at least in the b movie genre they ruled throughout the 1960's and 70's where they surfaced in such improbable locales as Japan in the Pinky Violence series and yes Mexico in Wrestling Women vs. the Aztec Mummy. Needless to say they karate chopped their way onto the trailer park landscape of American culture as well in such movies as She Devils On Wheels, Faster Pussycat Kill Kill and one of my all time favorites , Invasion Of The Bee Girls, where foxy female scientists ,who are actually giant bees kill men for their blood during sex... a perfect plot line, and a creed I have tried to live by, but alas no theme song. This record is a tribute to the those movies and the balls out hellcats who starred in them along with a few monsters and aliens whose theme songs would not be denied . So shed your annoying insistence on quality and all fading memories of good taste. All ye who enter here...
Directed and Produced by Russ Meyers
Screenplay by Roger Ebert and Russ Meyers
The story about the movie behind the songs from the movies' stories that should have been a movie... By: Josie Cotton
Excuse me if I wax poetic for a moment....sigh...In the world of b movies Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls stands alone. It's hard to even call it a b movie (or b movie musical). It is simply the apex and zenith and there will never be another movie like it. In this Russ Meyers technicolor extravaganza the premise is deceptively simplistic: part Partridge family / part Manson family an all bombshell trio called The Kelly Affair follow their rainbow unicorn dreams to the charred ruins of a cultural and sexual revolution the world had never seen the likes of. It was the end of the 60's ...It was Los Angeles ...and Meyers the high priest pre-ordained to carry out the last rites.
The fact this movie was ever made was nothing short of miraculous. That BVD slipped under the radar of a major movie studio (20th Century Fox) giving Russ Meyers, sole creator of the sexploitation genre, complete carte blanche in its making with no supervision was described by Ebert as "when the lunatics took over the asylum". The fact is the 60's had passed Fox by and maybe they equated free love with pornography but without big money problems, Fox would probably have never looked twice at a Russ Meyers. But there was no denying this was a seriously talented young film maker, making hard cash with soft porn on low budgets, and avert their eyes they could not, even in the 'stroke house' on 42nd Street where the legendary Darryl Zanuck had to view Meyers' scandalous hit, 'The Immoral Mr. Tease'. For whatever reason, they decided to throw him a bone and baby, he ran with it. Lucky for us...
Having been called both the worst and best movie ever made, a "head on collision of respectable art and worthless trash", it is simultaneously a melodrama, a skin flick, a violent exploitation movie, a satire on a satire, an expose on real people, a rock musical unparalleled and a comedy often accused of being a movie that didn't know it was a comedy. Mercilessly panned by film critics ( aka old farts) Meyers was going into such uncharted territory he had to make it up as he went along. It has been deemed true post-modernism and Quentin, you go girl but Russ Meyers was doing this 40 years ago without a map and without the artifice of affectation.
Despite the world class cinematography which people don't seem to realize Meyers was a master of, his editing was truly ahead of its time, born of necessity thanks to the bevy of busty babes from his other movies who could act only seconds at a time, requiring Meyers to develop a kung fu fast editing style. The writing ranges from cheeky Shakespearean prose to drug addled street slang, which always seems slightly out of sync as if it were written by squares trying to be 'hep'...oh and it was! Nevertheless the dialogue for BVD has become archetypal in our culture: "This is my happening and it freaks me out", a line made famous by party guru Z Man... then shamelessly lifted by Austin Powers in 'International Man Of Mystery' 1997. "You're a groovy boy... I'd like to strap you on sometime" a line oozed by the incomparable Edie Williams, Russ Meyers' real life wife. It remains the best pick up line ever purrrred by a bottomless man-eating sex hyena on the make. And yes, "Where do I fit in, Kelly for all you afflicted afficionados.
Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls is a kind of ecstatic assault on the senses with so much to take in it requires a protracted prologue, the epilogue to hair-lip all epilogues, watching the movie at least 3 times and ongoing narration that at times includes the actors having to describe their own characters in 3rd person while they are trying to act like they're acting in first person to an actor also referring to them in 3rd person! To say that Russ Meyers had a demented sense of humor would be the understatement of the millennium! But it will always be the music of Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls that is the be-all and end-all in this epic comic book musical of punishment and redemption. The sound track is at times falling down drunk with soaring strings and opulent orchestration, sometimes in the guise of spy music, game show music, Lassie music, and cheesy soap opera organs thrown into the mix intentionally and perfectly over the top. Meyers over-saw the music with the same fervent and loving attention to detail he carried over into every aspect of the making of this movie. He insisted the all girl rock band (renamed The Carrie Nations) who were not musicians (or actors) learn how to play their instruments or at least fake it better than anyone had ever done, (they still hold that cache) rehearsing hours a day so they would look like, and more importantly, feel like real musicians. What ultimately sets this movie music apart though is its untouchable take on the music of the day... a flower powered time capsule of psychedelic rock pop funk and heavy on the British Invasion...through a kaleidoscope brightly. It not only defined an era without missing a beat, it has become timeless.
Someone very wise once said there is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come and this was just such a time and the ideas were huge. Before disco strutted its bad self under a spinning disco ball reflecting on a sea of white encrusted nostrils ...Before punk rock ripped out the throat of society (and deservedly so) as it nodded into unconsciousness from slamming smack, there was this time, this brief time when music was the religion of choice... when people really believed it would change the world. It was that unbeatable combo of Love (capital L), LSD and tearin' the mother down. Now I'm as guilty as anyone of making fun of the hippies but it reminds me of that Star-trek episode when the Enterprise reaches a distant planet ruled by the great Apollo, the last surviving Greek god in the known universe. With no one left to remember him or bring him offerings he dies of a broken heart and at the end, with uncharacteristic humility, Captain Kirk muses "Would it have hurt us, I wonder, just to have gathered a few laurel leaves?".
Sure.. after it was all over, there were those who scurried back to the suburbs to hide in front of their televisions, and those who retreated to their teepees and communes and cults, still others who sold out on wall street or pimped it out to add agencies... who still feast on the entrails of their own betrayed ideals. (Easy, Josie. It's just a movie!) However you want to spin it and maybe despite itself, the last gasp of the 60's lives on in Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls through its music. This is the legacy they leave us. It is there in Lynn Carrie's voice, in the songs of mega-songwriter Stu Philips and the real life musicians who played behind them. But there is an underlying poignancy as well. It might have been drugs that opened the doors of perception but it was Charles Manson who shot Bambi in the head, mid-filming, and Meyers/Ebert didn't skip an opportunist bong hit to rewrite the ending into basically a musical snuff film. But that the 60's live on in THAT movie, with THAT director, who had not an iota of a clue about the times they were living through, could it be any more perfect? You'll just have to take my word for it: It is perfection. Oh irony... I am your whore!
Rest assured, Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls is irreverent and self mocking, dripping with nymphomaniac hippies, betrayal, fashion and dismemberment. Behold montage after montage, foreshadowing a virtual cafeteria of other bleeding, syrupy musical montages, more types of creepy staring than I knew existed, and an abortion that turns into pancakes which I had thought impossible.
It was my own exquisite agony having to choose which song to include on Invasion Of The B Girls but 'Days Of Now And Then' prevailed of the most heartbreakingly beautiful and absurd songs ever written, climaxing during a gauzy love scene between 2 man-hating lingerie lesbians about to be slaughtered by a drug crazed transvestite. I will always consider it a great honor when Russ Meyers told me personally that I would be sued "till the end of time" if I ever recorded any of the songs from his movies. I didn't listen of course....but my deluxe bouffant wig is off to you, sir. I just hope that wherever you are now, they have giant knockers to your exact specifications.
(Five of Meyers films are now permanently installed in the Museum Of Modern Art)
Ted Mikels
Undoubtedly one of the worst movies I have seen, where insanely bad dancing hits an all new low... a kind of go go morality play, really a tribute to never letting a lack of talent get in the way of pursuing your dreams.
Michelle, witless waitress / "dancer" escapes her drunken short order cook/father/boss who lovingly calls out "You no good tramp! You're just like your mother " before she peels off to California with Buzz, her new hoodlum manager, headed for his sister's 'groovy hollywood nightclub'. What dreams await them on their crime-riddled road trip are (you guessed it) drugs, sleezy greasy club managers, gangs, guns, an escape INTO prison and gogo dancing the likes of which you have never seen, where best forgotten careers rise and fall in one bad bugaloo leap off the stage. "I'm gonna be a dancer, Critter, and a good one!! " Michelle tearfully tells her hitchhiking future love interest, as if she had considered being a bad dancer but had somehow decided to be a good one instead. Whew ! And lest we forget the famous diner scene where the always packin' Buzz seems to have been tele-ported, mid-conversation, back to his cronies. "Where did that dude come from?", you might ask, well apparently the director never did and that alone makes this "movie" worth seeing, along with the bad dialogue and even worse acting.
And yet... and yet...the theme song for "Girl In Gold Boots", coincidentally named 'Girl In Gold Boots', cheezy harmonica and all, lives on in infamy. With memorable lines like "Don't you standin' still, baby" and "Keep your gold boots movin" you can't help but be drawn into that glittering world, which John Waters so brilliantly describes as "the hideous sorrow of low rent go go dancers" and people, it doesnt get skankier than this. We thank you, Nina Footwear for footing the bill on this pony prancing meltdown.
Directed by Herschel Gordon Lewis

Josie Cotton

If you ever wondered about the origins of chlaymydia...look no further. This is where the beaver hits the road in an all girl biker gang who pummel and bang their skanky asses across an entire neighborhood! They are the Man-eaters !!!
Not much in the way of a plot line, this movie was the director's self-confessed mea culpa to even the score for all us babes in boyland but ends up just making you want to take a shower. The Maneaters live by one code and one code alone: Men are the scum beneath their skid-marks. And if you make the the fatal mistake of turning sweet on one, you have to kill him...period. OK two codes, they live by two codes....except for the other ones ..whatever.. this is a multi-tiered organization. If you wanna ride with the Man-eaters, you've got to have sex immediately after a race. But if you're gonna need a real 'juicy stud', you have to win and then you can pick from the 'stud line', literally a hairy male smorgasbord forever marinating in the girls' x-rated clubhouse. When the Man-eaters aren't dragging some poor slob behind their bikes they are hosting extremely unattractive orgies there, thankfully clothed, rolling around on dirty mattresses in their bras and estrogen soaked capri pants to a soundtrack straight out of the Dating Game. (This is movie making!)
"Hey, thing move it to the stud line" barks Whitey, horny trash talkin' hoefer to her terrified man-prey. And as their bubbly underage mascot, Honeypot, wistfully watches on, longing to fit in, Queen, their sado-ponytailed leader emotes, "No guy deserves what you got, Honey" Then later in the Man-eaters' sacred initiation, while they chant "Sex, gas and blood, All men are mothers" the gleeful virgin strips down and, slathered with black motor oil, is understandably gang raped by some lowlife dweebs hiding in a ditch. Awwww...she finally made the gang!
"We're not a bunch of daisy pullin' broads" cackles Queen, decked out in white go go boots, oozing in understatement plus other un-mentionable fluids, right before she decapitates a guy then beats his headless corpse with a tire chain.
Make no mistake, this is a tender coming of age movie like no other, where girls struggle to find themselves in a baffling world through a series of kooky mis-adventures. While I wouldn't want to ruin the ending for you, there really is no ending...along with no middle and no beginning.
She Devils On Wheels is a must see. Trust me, gentle reader.

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