Ginger (1971)

The first in a trilogy of films starring Cheri Caffaro (the winner of a Bridget Bardot look-alike contest) as Ginger MacAllister, "the female James Bond". Ginger, although she has no training in things like law enforcement or detective work (or espionage, so how she gets to be the Female James Bond is a mystery), is recruited by an agency to take down a small time blackmail and drug ring in New Jersey. Though she may seem outmatched, our plucky heroine cuts a swath through the gang, killing, maiming or otherwise disposing of them in a manner that seems downright psychotic at times.

Copious nudity and badly-staged violence probably made this one a big hit at the drive-ins. Taking full advantage of the loosening of the last vestiges of the Hayes Code in the late 60's, movies took situations right up to the very edge of hardcore sex. The primary allure of the Ginger series is not only female nudity (and some full-frontal male nudity), but a generous helping of bondage, further amplified in the sequel, The Abductors. As comic books with bondage on the cover fetch higher prices, so do these unusual dinosaurs of a non-Politically Correct era continue to have staying power. Monterey Video put out a well-received set on VHS in the 90s, and are now bringing these strange gritty-yet-surreal movies into the DVD age, bless 'em.

Needless to say, there is a full review at The Bad Movie Report.

The film elements are in uniformly good shape. The colors are a bit muted, but stable throughout, and the sound is only serviceable - we're talking about low-budget film production in the early 70s, and I have no doubt this is going to be the best version of this movie available for some time.

We're pretty close to no-frills territory here. There is a "Cheri Caffaro Bio" - actually a filmography which erroneously mentions that her 1976 Too Hot to Handle is "with Jayne Mansfield" (the Mansfield Too Hot to Handle was released in 1959, guys...), and A Place Called Today's alternate title, City In Fear, is listed as if it were a separate movie. There is also a "Dossier", which is 12 color shots from the movie and a poster. As the Main Menu is tricked out to look like a file folder, the photos look like scattered pics spilled from an open folder, distributed over three pages. They're pretty small, and not much use at all.

There is a little more on the Extras side on subsequent discs, but we'll have to wait for those. The teases.

Dr. Freex, 2/4/2003