Playboy Cinema Collection: Christina - Playgirl Of The Western World Review
Christina van Belle is a young heiress to a publishing fortune who fritters away her time on racing fast cars, sailing her private yacht, dancing naked at a discotheque and touring expensive European cities wearing little but a fur coat. All of this extravagance draws the attention of various unscrupulous gentlemen and women, who see a way to make a lot of money off Christina. Or, if not that, then at least a way to have sex with her...
Try as the makers of pornography might, they never seem quite capable of portraying boundless amounts of wealth on the screen. Take Christina, for example, who we are told is the ultimate jet setter and who we first see dancing in a Stud-style nightclub with her blouse open to the waist. Her being driven through the streets of Paris in the back of a Roller might well suggest vast riches but when the phone rings, actress Jewel Shepherd doesn't look entirely sure if she ought to take the call, perhaps in anticipation of it being for the actual owner of the car, an Honest Jean motor dealer whose trade in Citroens and other French marques have afforded him a single Rolls Royce. When we next see Christina, she's strutting about a pier suggesting that she's a step away from a private yacht. But no, a man with more than a passing resemblance to That's Life's Kieran Prenderville shows up with a pastel pullover slung over his shoulders - there is much evidence in adult movies to suggest this is de riguer for the wealthy European playboy - only to open the door of a Ford Granada. And that's much more like a soft porn movie, suggesting a lot of money but actually dragging in Dagenham's finest Ford Ghias as transport for the rich and, apparently, famous.
Actually, she is seen in the cockpit of a private jet and at the wheel of a powerboat but the jet isn't seen going anywhere with her being in it and the hunched figure of the actual driver of the boat can be seen as Christina waves from it to those on a passing yacht. But such is the problem when pornography tries to hoist itself up the social ladder, as when it calls in all manner of favours to procure fast cars, mansions, private yachts in the Cote D'Azur and actors cast in the role of Lord Tristam Foster-Green, which, if you believed the film, would have you believe that all members of the English aristocracy have bodies that ripple like athletes, have an almost tantric sexual staying power and have 14" cocks. Which might well be the case but doesn't explain how Charles ended up with horsey old Camilla Parker-Bowles and not a queue of gorgeous blondes with massive tits.
There is a marvellous kidnapping plot at the heart of Christina, something about a terrorist group plotting to hold her hostage in return for bringing down her publishing empire, her vast fortune or perhaps just her knickers. In the manner of such things in porn movies, this 10 November group keep Christina tied up with mere ribbon around her wrists and ankles and wearing only a lace thong and a T-shirt pushed up over her breasts. No dungeons for them, clearly, preferring to leave Christina unguarded on the roof of a beautiful villa. Which, other than the unguarded bit, does make a kind of sense, particularly to the kind of audience this is aimed at, being fourteen-year-old boys who must surely dream of kidnapping women and keeping them tied up in their underwear. Or was that just me?
Much less impressive are the dreams that she has in which lots of gloved hands, in leather and velvet obviously, stroke her body and bring her to a kind of ecstasy. There might be need to make a serious film regarding the love that grows between a kidnapped young woman and the group holding her but it isn't this one, with 10 November being a terrorist group that count a camp old man - "Miss van Belle, you are quite kidnapped!" - and a lot of lovely young women within its ranks. No Baader-Meinhof group this! Happily, these women are a beautiful, somewhat sexually-starved lot who can appreciate the wearing of leather and lace, even in their secret terrorist layer where, in the manner of all secret hideaways, karate girls kick at one another. And girls in pink leotards bounce around on trampolines, which isn't something that I remember from Enter The Dragon or American Ninja. Soon these girls are fighting for the pleasure of the evil leader of this terrorist cult - this is surely the most hopeless onscreen scrapping this side of watching two old farts in a rest home over the last piece of Battenburg - with Christina being the winner's prize. Very soon, a saxophone is heard, Christina is bedded to a dream sequence in which unseen women drive toy cars over her naked body whilst she says things like "A touch of the brakes...and then the accelerator! Ooooh!" I'm not making this shit up!
In time, Christina does make good her escape from the terrorist cult but akin to a Nancy Drew who loses her clothes on a regular basis, Christina ends up on board a boat full of pirates from which she must escape once again. After, that is, she has a lot of heavy-breathing sex with the captain of the boat in his little berth. I would have written energetic sex but it's never so in films like this in cast the audience might catch a glimpse of something they shouldn't - a penis, that is - when there's a lot of breasts and eighties-styled pubic hair to be looked at. It all ends with Christina getting free from her captors once more, this time via a chase through the mountains and a brief moment to have sex with a man in a pastel pullover, thrown over his shoulders naturally, in a cave where they spend the night. Very soon, she's back dancing naked in a disco, where the very order of the world is restored. Except, that is, for the writing of her adventures in the nude, which, in a case of life imitating art, is also how I'm writing this review. Just thought you might like to know!
If anything, this looks even worse than Black Venus and might well, given the quality, have been originally recorded on a C-90 cassette tape, on which it's lingered since. Although, as one with a little experience of the video age of soft pornography, it's not at all uncommon for films like Christina to look as bad as this, with the picture being fuzzy, indistinct and with no more detail in the picture than if you looked at it through closed eyes. The audio track sounds as though it was recorded via an on-camera microphone with the only post-production dubbing being a voiceover in which Jewel Shepherd fantasies about the effect that a Matchbox car has on her body. The whole thing sounds terrible...although the disco music that opens and closes the film has a certain something about it even if, on hearing it, you do expect to see Oliver Tobias crashing drunkenly out of the club.
The only bonus material is a set of Trailers (5m11s) for these Fabulous Films softcore releases, including Black Venus, Christina, Love Circles and Ecstasy.
Last updated: 08/06/2018 14:18:40