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09.25.2017
Life In Dirty Movies, A (2013)
Movie Review by The Mortician
05.24.15

Life In Dirty Movies, A (2013) Follows the last days of exploitation filmmaker Joe Sarnos, who wasn't exactly a household name. This flick chronicles Joe's final months on earth, as a confused, eighty-something year old man struggling to actually make some sort of comeback movie with producer Mike Raso (from Alternative Cinema/Camp Video fame). Joe and his very supportive wife Peggy are the focus of the documentary, which covers his early '60's sexploitation movies, why and how they were made, and his desire to return to the erotic film biz one last time very late in life. Joe obviously has some mild dementia or memory issues throughout this doc but his wife Peggy is super sharp, running the household and assisting Joe when he tries to live his dream one last time before passing on. (The finished script to his new "epic" looks to be about ten pages long! A lot of the things he does and says on camera are sadly laughable...when you realize this is probably how most of these kinds of trailblazing artists will end up.) This is actually a touching, moving documentary, very sad at the end when Joe dies before living the dream one final time, but his wife is thankful that his obituary in the New York Post is so immense with celebrity coverage so her hubby will be immortalized forever. So in a way, the underdog does win at the end. Mike Raso is pretty poignant in his part, giving poor ol' Joe hope for a new project but delivering the cliché, tired news repetitively that "there's no market for this stuff anymore" and "I can't seem to raise the budget for this project" in meeting after meeting. Having had experience with Raso in the past myself, I'd like to ask him... "Then why are you even in business if there's no market for this stuff?" Still, I guess having a "semi-legit" distributor championing Joe one last time in life helped the old guy shine with ambition one last time, but still...it's a heartrending affair all around. I liked the clips and titles from his old movies (like SIN YOU SINNER, THE SWAP and MOONLIGHTING WIVES), interesting stuff from its era. Tame compared to now, but women baring their shapely wares in any era is cool with me! Well worth checking out if you're a filmmaker or an aging artist of any sort. This could easily be me...or YOU! Check it out and show some respect.

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