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£12.00Current stock: 3
Director: Pete Walker
Label: Something Weird Video
The next time a certain screenwriting guru makes the rounds with his famous 3-day, $300-plus story structure seminar, check his pamphlet very carefully. How much you wanna bet he still won’t have a section devoted to the art of 3-0 flashbacks? Rather than pay good money to learn how to write formulaic films certain to send the American film industry swirling right down the bloody loo, serious students of sinema are advised to seek out this British art film with a little depth to it. Shortly before director PETE WALKER became known for such shockers as The Flesh and Blood Show and Frightmare he made this intriguing softcore 3-D experiment in Rashomon like storytelling. Filmed in London in 1972 as The Four Dimensions of Greta, it reached U.S. shores one year later as The 3 Dimensions of Greta!
TRISTAN ROGERS (perhaps best known as Roger Scorpio) on General Hospital) gets top billing as Berlin journalist Hans Weimar, who travels to London to track down missing au pair Greta Grueber (LEENA SKOOG) because, um... well, okay, the reason is never fully explained, but Hans does mutter something about her "wealthy father." Besides, Hans finds his ex-sweetheart Sue (KAREN BOYES) before he even lifts a finger to locate poor Greta! Sue is engaged to be married, and so is Hans, which means there’s a candlelight dinner and arty montage sequence before they fall in the sack together. Director Walker himself turns up as a waiter in a joke cameo that’s clever in theory and hilarious in execution!) Romantic subplot now in place, the two reunited lovers set out to find the elusive au pair....
Greta’s two sexy ex-roommates paint an unflattering portrait of her and, in the first of four anaglyphic (red-and-green) 3-D flashbacks, we watch as Greta mistreats the innocent duo, steals their hard-earned money, and eventually exposes them to wild sexual orgies. (Look fast for Rocky Horror Picture Show creator RICHARD 0"BRIEN as a naked reveler!) At a Soho strip joint where the down-and-out Greta was briefly employed, a sexy stripper named Cyn (played by sepia starlet MINAH BIRD), tells Hans of police raids, gangsters, and Greta’s football-player boyfriend Roger (ROBIN ASKWITH of the "Confessions of comedies) who was roughed up by East End thug Roberts (ALAN CURTIS). ln the best of the 3-D flashbacks, the gangster tells Hans of his altercation with Roger, with show-stopping 3-D effects including Roger shoving a broken bottle at Roberts, and Roberts twisting Roger’s arm behind his back while pushing his face, screwed up in pain, straight at the audience....
Walker’s obvious point: there are many sides to every story, and we don’t know Greta any better by the end than singer HUCKLEBERRY FYNN did at the beginning: "Greta, are you angel or devil? / How I wish I knewwwwwww...."
As for the art of screenwriting, study MURRAY SMITH’S script and skip the overpriced classes. You’ll only be flushing your money right down the bloody loo.
From a 35mm print complete with sort-of 3-D. - Chris Poggiali