Swiss Exploitation with a High Creep Level (and a US Sales Gimmick)! The Molesters plays The Esquire, Toledo May 8, 1964
Sittlichkeitsverbrecher was the original title of this film and Franz Schnyder was it’s Director. This was one his last films, which seemed to be trying to make some kind of film that would travel outside of Switzerland after years of various movies that only did any kind of business in his native country, and it could be said that this serious film was also made with New York’s 42’nd Street sleaze halls in mind. According to Something weird Video, the US version also has added footage of Darlene Bennett with a whip attacking Gigi Darlene – adding footage to sleaze was certainly a common practice back then.
There was a time when a lot of sick topics were all over the Exploitation map, several of them not being the kind you really want to see. The advertising for this film may have promised something more on the line of Olga’s House of Shame, those who seen the trailer knew that this was going to be a different ride all together, although sadly it was not going to be a pretty picture. Picked up by the one-film Aristocrat Films in The US, this was a Dramatic look at the procedures of INTERPOL and the capture of sex offenders…while choosing stuff that would bring in those offenders in the theater! Yikes! No wonder why there was a “Stranger Danger” Safeguard Whistle as the gimmick…obviously 1,000 women did not choose to see the film, I guess.
Only in The 60’s that a film about this sordid topic would aim for both the Arthouse and Grindhouse, and in Toledo, it just went down to the Grind at the Esquire, which would later be known for it’s Adult films after 1969, as well as the Westwood and sometimes the Royal Follies. In The 70’s, all pretense was thrown out and the Exploitation was packed frame to frame, making this one of the more serious films that brought a strong creepiness to the table.
The Gayety was playing House on Bare Mountain and the Westwood was playing the Tony Perkins/Orson Wells showcase The Trail, so it was up to another theater to play something like this. The whistle for the first 1,000 women who saw this was clearly a good idea, considering the type of people who might want to see this films.
As you can tell, the film was a fail, playing one week (or sometimes two week) engagements with a subject that was pretty repulsive for areas that were not in New York. The Black and White style was perfect for the ugliness and occasional campy humor – check out the courtroom scene about the “Raspberry Mole” being the major clue to capturing one of those ultra creeps! Throw in possibly some influence through the classic film M, and some attempts at courtroom Drama, and there you have it.
Considering the Stranger Danger all through this film, the US Distribution company decided to promote it with a more familiar kind of image.
Checking on the IMDb, most of the actors here would only have this film on their listing…sometimes I can understand the reason. You really don’t want to have a character like a victim like these as your first role.