The Good

The Bad

Inside Deep Throat isn’t just a look at the controversy that the film Deep Throat created. It is a look at the US and the myriad of change that did and didn’t happen as a result of the sexual revolution. The film seemed like it was going to open the floodgates for pornography. That blue movies could be taken seriously and made part of the mainstream. Sadly, the idea of the sex that was depicted in the film, soon overshadowed all of this. While it was still raking in money (it was made for $25,000 and make $600 million, supposedly), there were mob hands all over it which also didn’t help matters. Then, after court cases where the film was eventually banned, Harry Reems (one of the films stars and paid a whopping $250 for his troubles), was almost sent to jail for 5 years for his involvement in Deep Throat. Add to this, that the feminist movement (something I do and don’t understand at times) started gaining ground during the films run and you end up with a revolution with a convoluted result.

Most people know that porn eventually became mainstream but not in the way that the early pioneers had hoped. The advent of videotape made making these movies so easy that there were too many chiefs and not enough tribespeople. Inside Deep Throat is such an interesting look at all of this, yet you don’t feel overwhelmed as a viewer. It presents the facts, the cases and everything in such a way that the viewer cannot help but get caught up in it. This is one of the best and most accessible documentary films I think I have ever seen.

Features

The Binghamton Trial; Beverly Hills; Quincy House; Princeton: Deep Throat in the Suburbs and The Tuscon Trial

These are a series of well done vignettes looking at the some of the other trials that Deep Throat was involved in. While watching trial after trial things get a little old, I found this DVD is the “go to guide” for all things related to this movie. In fact, I think that one could write a term paper on pornography and this DVD might be the only necessary source. I think it is very interesting that this movie spread to the places that it spread, and it’s also telling that while people were trying to stop it, it was making money in places like the suburbs where no one probably ever thought that it would.

Cut Throat; Harry Reems Athletic Club; The Zen of Deep Throat; Linda Does Hollywood; Legends of Erotica; Woman Against Pornography; Linda’s Exit

This is when the extra features started to get a little too much for me. They spared no expense at putting some of this stuff on here. The “Harry Reems Athletic Club” looks at a group of men who think highly of Harry Reems. “Linda Does Hollywood” looks at her trying to become a big star in tinseltown. “Linda’s Exit” basically has her, in her final years, wondering what the big deal about Deep Throat really was? These extra pieces are all very well done and cut together like mini-movies. I just think there reaches a point where they went a bit overboard on the extras.

Commentary Tracks, Last Word for Now and Firedance With Me

I found the commentary track, which was just an amalgamation of a bunch of different interviews in which people discussed Deep Throat, to be much more interesting than the commentary that was done by Directors Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey. There approach was a but stodgy, whereas the other track just let me people say what was on their minds. “Last Word For Now” has people like Bill Maher, Hugh Hefner and Wes Craven discussing America’s attitude’s about sex. I could explain what the “Firedance With Me” segment is about but I think it’s better if you figure that one out for yourself.

Video

Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1. This is one of the slicker documentaries that I have seen, and the fact that it was produced by Brain Grazer means that there’s obviously money behind it. Still, this documentary is accessible for that reason. Shot and lit very, very well, yet mixing old and new footage with updated editing techniques, this movie ends up playing to both audiences. In fact, as I stated above, I am actually quite surprised with how easy this movie was to watch. You don’t have to have any interest in pornography (though it probably helps a tad) to really appreciate all the work that has gone into making Inside Deep Throat.

Audio

English Dolby Digital 5.1. You gotta give this documentary credit for having very consistent, well done sound. Yeah, I know I mentioned that they had some money behind them, but with all the interviews (from what I understand there was well over 100!), they really did a fine job of keeping everything sounding good despite much different recording conditions each time out. There were a few times (especially with the theater owner in Florida and his wife) where I had to turn the volume up a tad, but that was about it. Even on the supplemental materials, I was very impressed because I am sure that the makers of this documentary and the DVD couldn’t have been everywhere to supervise how this stuff was captured.

Package

A womans open mouth and the title Inside Deep Throat in the middle of it. On the back is an American flag, a description of Inside Deep Throat (and Deep Throat itself), an extras listing, a credits list and some technical specs. All in all, I am not sure that this packaging is the best thing for this movie. It almost looks too technical. I think they should have emphasized the 1970s porn angle a little but more and maybe created an air of mystery with some shots of the cast, the director and the crew. That’s just my two cents, though.

Final Word

It really is amazing how mainstream pornography is today. It is everywhere. From the clothes people wear, the make-up women put on, to the way we groom our bodies to look like these people we see in the porn movies (yeah, I DO watch porn from time to time), it is more prevalent in our culture than I think we care to admit. How did this happen? Not that I mind it, but how did we go from the puritanicalness of the 1980s, to the way things are today?

You know, I often think about our early society. How we used to eat with knives and forks, how we’d court a woman if we wanted to date her, how we conducted ourselves in a chivalrous manner. Looking at the way things are today, I can’t help but think that we are slobs now. I am not writing this from an outsider’s perspective. I am very much a slob. I guess I can’t help but wonder how things got this way?

Inside Deep Throat is the kind of film that opens up many discussions. It doesn’t take a stand or say what is right or wrong, it just tells a story and in doing so lets us examine a little bit about who we are.

INSIDE Deep Throat was released February 11, 2005.