Sunday, March 31, 2019

Lilith Likes to Watch - Money Month Finale

Welcome to the Money March finale. We've made it to the final on-screen appearance of Constance Money. What a beautiful month it's been.
Title: A Taste of Money
Year: 1983
Starring: Constance Money, Jamie Gillis, Sharon Mitchell, Paul Thomas
Director: Richard Mailer
Synopsis: Chronicling rising star Constance Money's emotional and sexual turmoil, the monumental release "A Taste Of Money" is a standout film indeed. An all-star cast has the unique experience of portraying their own personal roles in delighting the gray-eyed beauty. - Via IMDB
Why it is Notable: It's the final on-screen appearance of Constance Money.

"Will I taste the money again?"

What a peculiar swan song this is.

I'll admit, I don't really know all the behind the scenes reasoning for this movie's existence. I don't know what drew Constance Money back into the work. I don't know if this was meant to be some sort of revival of a career, if she needed the money, closure on that part of her life, or if it was something else. I dove into some of the facts behind the whole Money/Metzger thing and it's depressing, so I decided to preserve my enjoyment of Constance Money and not look too deeply into this particular film.

Still, this film exists.

The plot is simple. Porn producers and actors rally to try to bring Constance Money in for one more film. But, Constance is happy living a simple domestic life with her husband who is a musician. Her husband tells her he's going to tour with a band and when she points out she gave up her career in adult films for him, he berates her and leaves. We find out he's fucking some other girl. I hate him.

Constance is brought to the producer, fucks her Misty Beethoven co-star Jamie, then fucks a female friend, Anne, then blows a guy in a hot air balloon. Constance goes to meet the producer, watches him casting-couch a girl, then runs out of the office and hugs her husband instead of returning to an industry that uses young girls like objects.

It's full of metaphors and analogies of Money's career. The conversation she has with her husband is reminiscent of the talk Anna has with her husband in Obsessed, there's an extended sex scene in a kitchen which could be a reference to any number of scenes in Barbara Broadcast, as well as a  scene where they're served by a randomly nude waitress. When the girl, named Connie, comes into the producer's office, Constance literally sees herself.

It wasn't the best we've had this month, the allegory is both really shallow, and also obtuse. The plot, what little there was, didn't make much sense, because Constance never finds out she's being cheated on so her reuniting with her husband is a false happiness. Nor does she rescue the young Connie, and thereby redeems herself. She just leaves Connie to the wolves.

And, I know this is going to sounds like I'm missing the point entirely but there was too much sex. There's an extended fuck-session between the Anne character and some guy. It goes on for minutes and Constance is not on my screen and I didn't come here for these two. The previously mentioned kitchen scene was at least humourous and absurd so it kept my interest.

Obviously the highlight of this film is Constance Money. Unlike most her other films, she takes sexual control in most of her scenes. She initiates, she dominates. It's a return to form from her Peanut Butter and Misty Beethoven days.

The scene where she's fucking her husband might be some of her best work. In one shot, she's rolling from her back to her front and for a moment, she's on her side, sort of curled up, and it's a pretty shot and she looks vulnerable and safe and unguarded. In the same scene, she's riding her husband with control and command, and it's a very nice, powerful shot.

I wish we were wrapping up Money March on a more enjoyable note. Constance Money's professional history is fraught with legal battles and coercion. If you want to learn more, I recommend the podcast The Rialto Report. They have several episodes on Constance Money, including an interview, her films, and several episodes on Radley Metzger. I've linked to all of the Constance Money posts for your convenience so you can do your own deep dive.

I hope to see Constance Money again some day.

LILITH'S SCORE: 3/5

NEXT TIME: You thought that was the end of the themed month, didn't you? Well things are about to get weird with...Animation April.



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