IN PERSON TRIBUTE ROBERTA FINDLAY | Offscreen
Roberta Findlay is one of exploitation's most prolific filmmakers. From the 60s to the 80s she worked as director, actress, cinematographer, screenwriter or distributor on over 40 productions. Her career embraces the heyday of grindhouse cinema in the sleazy 42nd Street and Times Square districts of NYC. Like "The Deuce", but in real life! She started out as a factotum alongside her then husband, Michael Findlay, specializing in "roughies": sexploitation featuring BDSM, spanking and other proclivities. She took her place in the director's chair for the first time on "The Slaughter" (1971), later rereleased as "Snuff", with extra sequences added to suggest a real murder had been committed onscreen. After Michael's tragic death, she continued on her own, making X-rated films such as "The Tiffany Minx" and "Angel Number 9". She crossed over into horror with "A Woman's Torment" and made a killing in the straight-to-video horror market with the visceral urban exploitation hit "Tenement". The Bronx is coming to Brussels! Roberta Findlay is the perfect guest of honour for a film festival with punch.
FROM HOLLY WITH LOVE
A young and beautiful Times Square hooker tells her "first trick" how she lost her virginity and ended up on the streets. "It all started last summer" at her sister's beach house with her boorish brother-in-law, a couple of beach bums, oral sex, hardcore penetration plus explicit self-service set to Debussy.
A WOMAN'S TORMENT
A mentally unstable young woman, left to her own devices in an isolated beach house, loses her grip on reality and collapses into a maelstrom of violent delusions, fantasy and bloodlust. The result is an extraordinary mix of melodrama, hardcore sex and proto-slasher movie, with a big nod to "Repulsion".
THE TIFFANY MINX
A rich heiress seeks refuge in a remote villa to recover from an attempt on her life, but the danger follows her there. Unpredictable plot twists pile up post-haste, leading to a hard-to-guess denouement in this stylish mystery thriller that Findlay spices up with some of her hottest pornographic action.
MASTERCLASS ROBERTA FINDLAY
Underground filmmaker and connoisseur William Hellfire interviews Roberta Findlay, focusing on production aspects of the (s)exploitation industry from the 60s to the 80s. The career of this privileged witness and smart businesswoman offers the opportunity for a unique glimpse behind the screens of 42nd Street.
"The film that could only be made in South America - where life is CHEAP!" An opportunistic producer took a grindhouse slasher movie called "Slaughter", added an epilogue showing the supposed director disembowelling one of his assistants, and passed off the footage as "real". And so an urban legend was born.
TENEMENT: GAME OF SURVIVAL
The long-suffering residents of a Bronx apartment block are besieged by ultra-violent drug dealers in the best of Roberta Findlay's horror films. This unjustly forgotten exploitation classic is set in the sleazy underbelly of Reagan's America, with New York City graphically depicted as an urban hellhole.
ANGEL NUMBER 9
Steven is a heartless womanizer who has no sooner dumped his pregnant girlfriend than he's killed in a traffic accident. An angel assigns him to return to Earth, but this time as a woman destined to fall in love with a man who will break her heart. Romance suffused with explicit sex and feminine sensuality.
THE ALTAR OF LUST
A young woman relates her sexual confusion to a therapist via surreal dubbing and explicit flashbacks teetering on the historical cusp between soft and hardcore. One year prior to "Deep Throat", a moustache-less Harry Reems gets it on with a belly-dancer. With a groovy soundtrack from Brit rockers Toe Fat.
THE KISS OF HER FLESH
Softcore proto-slasher in which one-eyed Richard Jennings (played by Michael Findlay) slaughters mostly naked young women in fiendish ways (electrified earring, poisoned semen, Butane torch...). The third entry in the deranged roughies trilogy on which Roberta Findlay collaborated.