Where to Start? Toledo, 2-26-58. When The Devil Brought Bardot to Toledo and Sorority Girls Hung Out With the Motorcycle Gang

…Blog update…I still have not found my serious starting point for telling the tale based in Toledo…just yet.

In Toledo, it played the Westwood Art Theater, a legendary screen that’s now (since 2013) a center for the Arts, but once up until it’s closing as an Adult Theater in 2011 a perfect example of what David F. Friedman talked about in an interview for Re/Search in it’s influential Incredibly Strange Films. Many of the older houses that turned into Porn theaters were places like the legendary Westwood, which met it’s fate by the time of Deep Throat, and after battling many time with the law over the films they played, it was the first to sell XXX Videos in Late 1978 and then went to being one of the few Adult Theaters that had a serious legacy behind it. What better way to start a look into Toldeo with the arrival of a very influential film which may have been just another arthouse hit in several places where these were a norm, but a major turning point in others that were only starting to bring in the spice into theaters outside of the downtown area and Drive Ins.

While the US release of Brigitte Bardot’s classic film was dated Oct. 21, 1957, one has to be reminded that films traveled back in that day, making stops in different parts of The US after a big premiere, so it took a while for the film to get to what’s considered the original Art House of the Glass City. The fact that Toledo had a couple of slightly influential Burlesque Houses adds some spice to this tale and the fact that the time for Rock and Roll was still in high speed. By Late Feb. 1958, when Roger Vadim’s classic film appeared in Toledo, Elvis Presley’s seminal “Jailhouse Rock” and Jerry Lee Lewis’ “Great Balls of Fire” were just exiting the Top 100 after being big hits, Little Richard’s just as classic “Good Golly Miss Molly” was starting it’s run, Johnny Cash was just one of many legends at Sun with “Ballad of a Teenage Queen” making it’s mark at this time, Chuck Berry’s great “Sweet Little Sixteen” was rocking the house, and there were some signs of life in the Top 10.

It was a great time for those who wanted it!

I’m going to have to catch some ads for Monica, Story of a Bad Girl which took Bergman’s Summer with Monika and turned it into a Drive In Hit…much to the anger of the Art lovers and Janus Films.

Distributed through the US Kingsley International (Edward Kinglsley), at the time a sub division of Columbia which was mainly interested in the film although there was a kinky cool to having the company that had leading controversial films of the day that were released without any PCA/MPAA Approval. Although real film lovers were a good part to it’s success, you can say that many viewers were not the kind to go to an arthouse theater on a regular basis while checking out the goods.

Although, on the other edge of the spectrum, of course there was AIP’s low budget wildness which socked it to you playing at the Miracle Mile DI at Jackman and Laskey! Sorority Girl was one of the films of Roger Corman in his first few years in the business, starring Susan Cabot, Barbara Crane, Barboura O’Neill, and Corman regular Dick Miller featuring a paddle-spanking scene that must have been the reason why it played many times at the Drive Ins. Motorcycle Gang was starring John Ashley and Co-Produced by Alex Gordon and Samuel Z. Arkoff.

Some music for you…


~ by screen13 on April 22, 2014.

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