Love Scenes (1984) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Love Scenes is a remnant from the older days of "late night cable." It's a softcore sex film originally made for the Playboy network, and virtually unseen since its cable days. (It will come to DVD for the first time on Jan 30, 2007.)

It actually has a fairly interesting plot, which is not such a common thing in the world of softcore. A director has optioned a racy biographical script written by a retired actress. His producer tells him he has two choices: (1) make the film as a cheapie, or (2) hire his own famous wife to play the lead. Since the wife is an established star, her name recognition will attract backers. The director, being an ambitious fellow, is not opposed to directing his wife in sex scenes, but the wife really doesn't go for the idea at all. She's never done any nudity at all, let alone with her husband directing.

She finally agrees to take the part, but there's a twist. The script is about an actress who's married to a nice man who's a dud in the sack. The character eventually leaves her husband for a stud-muffin. The wife/actress playing that character is in the exact same position in her own life. She's never had an orgasm because her director/ husband doesn't make much of an effort in the bedroom, although he is a great guy in general. Her co-star is an arrogant jerk, but a major stud. On the first day of shooting, she gets so carried away that she actually climaxes in a sex scene. The husband thinks this is great acting, and wants her to keep up the good work! As the script develops, the character's plight and the actress's plight stay in parallel, and the director/husband stays completely clueless until the end.

In addition to a reasonably good plot, the film also has some interesting character actors in the supporting roles. Fast-talking comic Jack Carter plays the producer. Britt Ekland plays a lesbian photographer. Statuesque Julie Newmar plays the retired actress who wrote the script, and she plays her scenes in heels so high she looks like that guy who played the giant in Big Fish, especially compared to petite Tiffany Bolling, who plays the lead. (See picture below.)

Bolling herself was an interesting casting choice. She had been a staple of the drive-in features of the seventies, but hadn't worked very much at all between 1978 and 1983, playing only a couple of small roles in that period. She hadn't had a leading role or done a nude scene in the seven years prior to being cast in Love Scenes, so this was a comeback for her at age 38.

Of course, those elements are just window dressing in an erotic film. They are nice to have, but ultimately we do not watch softcore sex films for the interesting casting or the subtle plotting. It is in the erotic elements where this film falters. I'm not an expert in this genre, but I know the film's erotica left me cold. Most of the nudity is done by Tiffany Bolling, and she was at the time a rather ordinary-looking 38-year-old woman performing in sex scenes which were neither original nor skillfully filmed. She did several full-frontal scenes, including one skinny-dipping scene in excellent light, but her body was unexceptional, and she was never photographed from the rear at any time, not even from an angle. There's not a hint of her behind in the entire film, for reasons we can only guess at.

Three other members of the cast did full-frontal nudity as well, although two of the scenes are too dark to be considered significant nudity. All three actresses are uncredited, but one of them, Monique Gabrielle, needs no official credit to be recognized by fans of screen nudity. The other two actresses remain unknown to me. There are also several extras naked in an orgy scene from the film-within-a-film.

Britt Ekland remained clothed throughout the film. Given that fact, I'm not really sure why she was hired for this role at all. Certainly not for her Shakespearian line readings. I don't know what she did with her spare time back in the days when she was the "girlfriend to the stars," but I'll give you odds she wasn't hanging around The Actor's Studio.

It's not a great DVD. The transfer is full screen. That in itself is not a problem because that's probably how Love Scenes was filmed for cable, but the problem is that the print hasn't been cleaned up or remastered, and there are no features of any kind.  We're always happy to see a lost sheep found, so it's a pleasure to see this forgotten film finally make it to DVD from the "private screening collection," but it's not a disc to stand in line for. This is nothing more than a barely watchable softcore sex film brought to DVD in an uninspired transfer. Given a pretty good script and some interesting casting in the minor roles, this might have been a softcore masterpiece, but in order to get there it would have needed a younger, sexier star and a few more light bulbs. On the other hand, if you are a Tiffany Bolling fan, this is your Casablanca.

DVD INFO to be announced - DVD will be issued Jan 30, 2007

  • No features
  • Full screen only (original aspect ratio, I believe)



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The Critics Vote ...

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The People Vote ...

The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

Our own guideline:

  • A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre.
  • B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. In order to rate at least a B-, a film should be both a critical and commercial success. Exceptions: (1) We will occasionally rate a film B- with good popular acceptance and bad reviews, if we believe the critics have severely underrated a film. (2) We may also assign a B- or better to a well-reviewed film which did not do well at the box office if we feel that the fault lay in the marketing of the film, and that the film might have been a hit if people had known about it. (Like, for example, The Waterdance.)
  • C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by people who enjoy this kind of movie. If this is your kind of movie, a C+ and an A are indistinguishable to you.
  • C means it is competent, but uninspired genre fare. People who like this kind of movie will think it satisfactory. Others probably will not.
  • C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie, but genre addicts find it watchable. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film, but films with this rating should be approached with caution by mainstream audiences, who may find them incompetent or repulsive or both. If this is NOT your kind of movie, a C- and an E are indistinguishable to you.
  • D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-. Films rated below C- generally have both bad reviews and poor popular acceptance.
  • E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre.
  • F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.


Based on this description, this film is a C-, It's nice to see it on DVD after years of obscurity, but it is nothing more than a barely watchable genre film.

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