Getting Inside Deep Throat

By | July 19, 2017

Getting Inside Deep Throat

by | Jul 19, 2017 | Reviews | 0 comments

dinner and a pair of movies?

Helen: Mind if I smoke, while you’re eating?
Man: No, not at all.

Deep Throat (1972)

finding Deep Throat

It’s said that Deep Throat made pornography what it is today.  That it changed the nature of pornographic sex, from art to money.

I can’t say if that’s true from personal knowledge.  The movie was ever so slightly before my time.

When Deep Throat was originally released, I was 9 years old.  I was a precocious lad.  But, not quite that precocious …

I do remember hearing Deep Throat jokes and innuendos on late night television.  I asked my Dad to explain them.  He didn’t.

Dad was usually pretty straightforward with me.  Not this time.

It only made me work harder to find out what the movie was about.

I found out …

Linda: Suppose your balls were in your ear?
Dr. Young: [pause] Well, then I could hear myself coming!

Deep Throat (1972)

Linda: It makes me feel tingly all over and then nothing… There should be bells ringing, dams busting, bombs going off.
Helen: Do you wanna get off or do you wanna wreck a city?

Deep Throat (1972)

renting Deep Throat

I did get to finally see Deep Throat when I was 22.

It was available from a back room – not much more than a walk-in closet really – at the local gas station/video rental store.  Believe it or not, that was the “classy” option to rent pornography in Rock Island, Illinois, back in 1985.

One Friday night, a friend from my school days rented some movies from the infamous “back room”.

I bought the beer.

Perhaps it was the other way around.  That part is a little bit fuzzy.  Beer will do that to you.

That night, and over the next few weekends, we planned to tour the “Golden Age of Porn”.

That era, from 1969 to 1984, hadn’t been given any particular moniker as of 1985.  But, my friend was a serious porn connoisseur.

My school buddy intended to introduce me to all the films he considered to be the “classics”.

In case you were wondering, for the first night he picked out four films: The Devil in Miss JonesInsatiable, Behind the Green Door, and Deep Throat.

It was a long night …

Wilbur Wang: [on the telephone with Dr. Young] You gotta help me. I’m in love with Linda. We want to get married… thank you. There’s only one problem – she needs a nine-inch cock.

Deep Throat (1972)

It led to the porno business. Linda Lovelace and Deep Throat turned it into an industry. And like it or hate it, that’s what she’s going to be remembered for, forever.

John Waters

watching Deep Throat

In the event that you aren’t familiar with the movie, the concept is simple.  Linda Lovelace’s clitoris is not located in the normal position.

Instead, her clit is found to be nine inches deep in her throat.

What I remember most about the movie was the cheesy attempts at comedy.  All the bad puns.  The horrid use of cliches.

I watched it again last night, just to refresh my memory.  Time hasn’t been especially kind to this sort of skin flick.  It looks, sounds, and feels dated.  But, it was still rather enjoyable.

The attempts at comedy seem even more dated in 2017 than they felt in 1985.  I guess that should come as no great surprise.

Still, it’s nice to see porn acted in a camp style.  Certainly, not every adult film should be a comedy.  But, that doesn’t mean comedy can’t be fit into an erotic film.

I should also note my belief that the comedic elements are what likely allowed Deep Throat to have such wide appeal.

Laughing at the cheesy jokes served to relieve the uncomfortable sexual tension that can happen when groups watch strong sexual content.

I also think that being a comedy greatly helped Deep Throat become a media sensation.

Comedians (like Johnny Carson) and TV shows (like Sanford and Son) probably felt comfortable poking fun at the movie because Deep Throat was itself a form of comedy.

At least, that’s my theory.

Linda’s special skill

Overall, the sex scenes are not too bad.  Some are fun, some are erotic, some are silly.

It’s not especially well acted.  What porn is?

The sex seems authentic.  For the most part, everyone seems to enjoy themselves.

And yes, I have to say it …

Linda Lovelace is a real sword swallower.

Quite obviously, the movie was built around, not to mention named after, her special skill.  The entire plot is built on finding ways to show that skill off.

She can take a long dick all the way down into her throat as well as anyone.  Very impressive.  In a different time, she might have worked in a circus as a sword swallower.

When people talk about the movie, they talk about Linda. 

Harry Reems plays Dr. Young with a camp style that makes him the second star of the movie.  It had to be great fun to play that role.

Perhaps I should say that Harry’s cock is the movie’s second star.

While he actually appeared in some mainstream movies, his prolific porn career certainly seems to be as much about his equipment as his acting.

The movie became ‘pornographic chic’ in New York before it was busted. Mike Nichols told Truman Capote he shouldn’t miss it, and then the word just sort of got around: This is the first stag film to see with a date.

Roger Ebert

I defended Harry Reems because Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty did. That’s that basis of all my decisions, what those guys do, both then and now.

Dick Cavett

Inside Deep Throat

My first observation is that the use of Dennis Hopper as narrator for this documentary is a plus.  I’m a fan.

But, I wonder if perhaps they were paying him by the word.  It seems his interspersed comments are pretty sparse.

Looking back at that decade, the news clips etc., it does bring back memories.

Nixon was ugly, not just physically.

The feline with the mustache named Hitler was, however, quite cute. And, Harry Reems is still an awesome porn name.

Watching a simple adult movie cause such controversy is a little unsettling.

Seeing the FBI get involved is more than just unsettling.

I’m (obviously) a free speech advocate, so seeing the government charge everyone on down to projectionists with some kind of crime is anything but a hoot.

The government in my bedroom is bad enough, but seeing the mob get involved is scarier still. One theater owner refused to pay his cut, his movie house burnt down.  Or, so the story goes.

Creepiest of all is Larry Parrish, a former federal prosecutor from Memphis.  His obvious zeal to impose his extreme Christian morality on everyone is very disturbing.

Belay that …

feminists and Lovelace

Creepiest of all is Linda Lovelace on stage, with feminists clinging to her.  Claiming to have been a hostage throughout the whole thing.

It’s rather difficult to accept her assertion that, “Everyone that watches Deep Throat is watching me being raped.”

I’m not sure what to make of that.

Individuals involved with the making of Deep Throat insist that Linda was a very willing performer.

Yet, more than her share of bruises are evident in watching the film.

To my eyes, that might be a good metaphor for the entire Deep Throat, aka “porn chic”, era.

Law enforcement and prosecutors were, no doubt, abusive to an entire industry.  It’s possible that stars like Linda were themselves abused.

Then there’s the mob, and their influence in the making and distributing the film.

Deep Throat was a very special film that had a unique influence on society.  It seems like it ushered in a magical time for porn, when anything was possible.

Unless you look in the shadows, that is.  Perhaps the picture isn’t so pretty there …

At one point, Deep Throat was banned in 23 states.

Inside Deep Throat (2005)

In the beginning, Gerard Damiano was a hairdresser. Listening to his clients talk about sex, which in his salon was apparently all they talked about, he realized that pornography had crossover appeal. All you had to do was advertise a movie in such a way that couples would come, instead of only the raincoat brigade. With a budget of $25,000 and an actress named Linda Lovelace, he made “Deep Throat” (1972), which inspired a national censorship battle, did indeed attract couples and grossed $600 million, making it the most profitable movie of all time.

Roger Ebert

Deep Throat bullet points

  • 2002 Hollywood released 467 films. 11,303 adult films were released that year.
  • The obscenity laws used to prosecute Deep Throat’s makers remain unchanged when the documentary was made.
  • It was one of the first hardcore sex films to be shown in mainstream movie theaters.
  • Deep Throat was chosen as one of 100 landmark films of all time in the new “Radio Times Guide to Films 2007”.  The list was selected by the magazine’s film reviewers and staff. Radio Times’ editor Andrew Collins justified the selection by saying their list is not about cinematic quality, but more about the influence a film had on society. “Deep Throat is not necessarily recommended for everyone.  It’s a quite badly made film, but to deny its influence would be pure snobbery,” Collins said.
  • Deep Throat is a landmark pornographic film that launched the brief “porno chic” movement in the `70s.  During this time it became fashionable for couples to attend porn films like Behind The Green Door, Debbie Does Dallas and The Devil In Miss Jones.
  • Celebrities like Johnny Carson, Jack Nicholson, and Barbara Waters admitted to attending adult films during the porno chic era.
  • Filmed in only 6 days, with a total budget of $22,000.
  • As of 2002, it was reported to have grossed $600 million.

Deep Throat forged the sexual revolution, for good or bad.

Larry Flynt

THE END and deep throat to you all!

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