Two Girls for a Madman

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It’s time for The Scene to take another look into some long lost feature that played…well, in this case maybe a few select screens through New York and possibly a couple of other areas. 1968’s Two Girls for a Madman was one of the many films presented through Distribpix through The Late 60’s-Early 70’s that featured actors trying to get some kind of break in Film and instead winding up in the hundreds of Roughies being produced in the NYC area at the time (To the Scene, it’s FAR better than winding up in some kind of Drama that stank up the place and sank some company. Trust me, most Dramas were crap then.) or models looking for a slight diversion from their posing and winding up as familiar faces changing their names in about every other film. In this case, it’s a standard Roughie with a slight manic touch that featured two standout roles for a couple of very familiar faces, Arlene Farber – Who in this film appears as Toni France (See what I mean by the change of names) – and the still Real-Name-Unknown legend Lucky Kargo who’s manic presence always guarantees a good moment or two.

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Two really good looking NYC Ballet students are the focus of this tale that could have been promoted as some kind of “Morality Tale” to make sure that such a film can be played on the screen back in the day. One is a serious student, while the other is more like us – Ready to have some fun and play around, winding up in some kind of sexy party at the back of a Greenwich Village coffee shop that resembles some kind of ultra low-budget variation of Eyes Wide Shut’s mask party with a little more action, better music, and no Tom Cruise. The woman on the fun is of course Farber in one of her few roles outside of the world of Jerry Gross, while the trouble lurking there is hinted with sleazy believability by Kargo, in this film as the stalker Frank Yeager.

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After sneaking into the limo Toni is in with her rich “Boyfriend” (Yes, she’s a gold digger), Frank lets it known that he loves long legs, and oddly enough his creepy style has a slight effect on her. Sonya, her sister, however, is worried about Toni, but will find out later on that Frank also has eyes for her, and things all come to a heated moment at Ballet practice. For a common Roughie of the era, this scene is very good and something that hinted at Director Stanley Brassloff’s better films.

Sonya planned to go overseas to audition for some ballet, but Toni scammed her way into getting her almost look alike sister’s ID as she had plans of her own (And judging from her looks, one could imagine Commercials, Photo Shoots, and Skin Flicks…accent on the Skin Flicks). Although Toni made it through the gate in a way that could never happen today, it’s found out that her plane got into a crash, trying to convey the message after many minutes of Exploitation in the old school manner that Bad Girls Go to Hell…oh wait, I’m thinking of a Doris Wishman Film…let’s see, Gold Diggers Lose…wait, they don’t really lose much in reality, maybe dignity, but certainly not being rich if the cards are played right…Humm, let me try this out, Evil Chicks Don’t Win…wait, with her looks, she can…see, such messages are clearly just there to tag that “Morality” at the end, but thankfully what was happening in the cinema through 1968 was bringing a bit of reality to the screens making these cheesy endings seriously out of date.

Farber would later be in Jerry Gross’ solid Sexploit flick Female Animal, the film that was disguised to look like that it was foreign, which the Adult Film scene had a rage for back then. She had a natural talent for playing these troubled women: Teenage Mother (Teenage pregnancy), Female Animal (Winding up a hooker), I Drink Your Blood (Victim of savage Manson-esque Hippie Cult), but thankfully in real life, she later appeared in The French Connection and then moving to TV in the Mid-Late 70’s, possibly sparking off a few “Hey, I think I saw her in some film!” memories in some 42’nd Street regular. It’s both Farber and Kargo that steal the show, and this film can be checked out on a DVD with the lower-budgeted Mr. Mari’s Girls and Mitam’s Roughie from 1965 Tortured Females on a good Something Weird Video disc.

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~ by screen13 on July 14, 2009.

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