Sid Melton is in this movie. If you’re like me, you see this as a grave warning.
My wife, the champion that she is, will often watch with me films that I have been assigned to review. In the case of Greydon F. David’s Sixpack Annie, a sh*tkickin’ Southern sex comedy, she was all in. This was the latest in the MGM Limited Edition Collection of obscure print-on-demand titles, too, so it could even be a previously-unknown gem. I was a little excited too. We expected what you would expect: a threadbare plot punctuated by copious amounts of gleeful nudity (which may include a few glimpses of pubic hair), simulated sex scenes, crass sex jokes, and an ultimate triumph of the title character over whatever manufactured adversity the screenplay could muster. It was going to be fun! Both my wife and I had seen our fair share of goofy, low-budget sex comedies in the past from The Minx to The Bitch to The Schoolgirl Report movies. Often, these little obscure sex comedies will feature a sexy funk-tastic theme song to go with all the awkward nudity.
Oh, dear reader, how wrong we were. We were not prepared for the icy, malevolent sting of Sixpack Annie. By the end of the film’s mere 88 minutes, both my wife and I were screaming, beating up pillows, and (not kidding about this) firing suction darts at the screen from a pair of Nerf guns we usually don’t use until Oscar Sunday. It took a massive amount of willpower not to go into the freezer and completely upend the bottle of Jägermeister down my await gullet just to dull the pain. Dear Lord, this film is awful. It’s like the bastard child of Jim Wynorski and an epileptic chimp. It takes place in a bizarre parallel world where all the women are minxy hot-to-trot sluts in midriff-baring halters, and the men are all unctuous, oily fiftysomething behemoths who make Walter Matthau look like Amber Heard. Seriously, most every single one of the males in the film looks like Al Goldstein’s less classy cousin. They’re all wheezing, pear-shaped, horny monsters who breathe heavily, and speak every line as if they’ve just eaten six pounds of cod. What’s more, they’re constantly sweating out a patina of bacon grease all over their skin, giving them the healthy sheen of a bowl of fetid organ meat. The only male of any virtue is, oddly enough, Bruce Boxleitner, who, in 1975, looked very much like a particularly studly Matthew McConaughey. Boxleitner, rather disappointingly, is the only actor in the film to grace us with a nude scene. At least he has a nice tush.
The film is about the recently-of-age “Sixpack” Annie Bodine (Lindsay Bloom), a perfectly charming, blonde breast-owner who is the toast of her small Southern town. She’s constantly in trouble with the local law (represented by Joe Higgins, shaped like a block of manteca) for skinny dipping in public, and wrecking the homes of married men. The film, although rated R, does not show Annie directly engaged in too many of these scenes. If you’re going to make me sit through a hyuck-hyuck comedy like this, I expect multiple breasts, not the cutesy side-boob teasing that we’re granted. To her credit, Lindsay Bloom seems to coast through this whirling, lard-scented phantasmagoria largely unscathed. She looks like a young, blonde Marilu Henner, and has the sort of take-charge Southern charm of Dolly Parton. It was only by staring at the pretty lady that I got through some scenes.
The plot, such as it is, involves a greedy landlord who wants to take away Annie’s aunt’s diner, where Annie and her horny best friend Mary Lou (Jana Bellan) work. Annie, tired of the local boys (even the exceptionally hot Boxleitner), and fending off nauseating advances from the sheriff, decides to leave Georgia with Mary Lou, and go to Florida where she hopes to land her a sugar daddy. She doesn’t get to Florida, however, until over halfway through the movie, as the film so far has been padded out with dumb jokes and, uh… other scenes… that, uh… just stuff happens. That’s all. It’s a movie that’s pretty much all filler, and no boobs! There is a bit where Mary Lou, wanting to have sex with a man hung like an ox, but half as smart, tries setting Annie up with some other dude on a double date in exchange. Nothing comes of this. Mary Lou remains unsexed. Also, remember the “Bad Jokes” number from A Prairie Home Companion? Well, the film occasionally cuts to a pair of non-actor hicks who tell a series of these jokes. At first, you don’t laugh. Then you really don’t laugh. Then you get angry. Then you find yourself missing three days, and inexplicably in a Rhode Island motel room, surrounded by cops, and covered in fluids that are very much not your own.
Is there some sort of rule that all these comedies must feature a character named Buford? Or Eustace? Or, in the case of Sixpack Annie, “Beustis?” Seriously? “Beustis?”
Anyway, Annie’s only connection in Florida is her slutty cousin Flora (Louisa Moritz), who works as an in-call prostitute, and who demands that Annie buy a new outfit, and hang out at bars looking for high-rollers. She does attract the attention of a melanoma-orange greaseball who poses as a high-roller and extorts her for sex. Her only reaction to this is “Oh pooh!” She tries bedding an exotic Frenchman (Oscar Cartier) whom she rejects because he’s into Napoleonic role-play. She also befriends (but does not sleep with) a Boss Hogg-like Texan (Richard Kennedy) who spends the length of the film drinking booze from coconuts, and screaming at the top of his ham-clogged lungs. Annie wears alluring and sexy outfits (and even dresses in a cute, red “Little Orphan Annie” dress at one point), but the film doesn’t even give us the opportunity to look up her skirt or down her blouse. Where’s Andy Sidaris when you need him?
Doodles Weaver appears in the film. And Stubby Kaye. Time to loosen up your Borscht Belt.
I want to blame Smokey and the Bandit for this film. Surely the notion of a down-home grit-swilling Southern comedy about irascible ne’er-do-wells and busty blonde belles was borne of Burt Reynold’s secret breeding pit. But no. This film predates Smokey by two years. I can’t figure out where it came from. It’s such a badly-written, badly made and ill-conceived film, I almost want to hand it off to the folks over at Cinematic Titanic to see what comedy they can mine. Frank Conniff is local to me. Maybe I can hand it off at the next Cartoon Dump. On second thought, I had better not. I actually respect and admire the people involved with Cinematic Titanic, and I wouldn’t want them putting on the fish-oil-soaked wool sweater that is Sixpack Annie. The whole movie smells of week-old room-temperature Miller High Life. And your own bile.
Lindsay Bloom would go on to other things. The director would not. I have not seen it. Time for the healing process to begin.