Join us for an exclusive preview of newly restored, long-lost, tale of twisted terror Miss Leslie's Dolls by kind permission of Network Distributing.
Doors: 7:30pm – Programme starts: 8:00pm, Over 18 only
Admission £5 in advance / £7 on the door (cash only)
A dark and stormy night. Three libidinous students and their prim teacher are marooned in the middle of nowhere. The only shelter, a solitary house, next to a graveyard. Its owner, an unworldly woman in a dowdy blue dress, who talks enigmatically about somebody called Martha... and who has a five o'clock shadow and is dubbed with a woman's voice.
Perhaps it would have been better to remain in the car!
When Michael Weldon applied the term 'psychotronic' to the frequently reviled, sensationalist genre films that proliferated in the grindhouses and drive-ins of post-WW2 America, he could have been describing Miss Leslie's Dolls.
Seemingly oblivious to narrative logic and the niceties of good taste, it is the ultimate, delirious midnight movie experience, of a kind which would have delighted the film geeks who haunted rep cinemas such as London's legendary Scala, or who braved the scary darkness of 42nd Street's crumbling picture palaces.
But for decades, this would-be cult classic was considered lost. It was unavailable to those very fans of freaky films who would cherish and champion its unique eccentricity. Even the little information that could be found about it was unreliable.
Now, happily, that period of obscurity is over, as Network Distributing resurrects Miss Leslie with a world-first restoration on Blu-Ray and DVD. And, having played a role in the film's rediscovery, Erotic Film Society is delighted to present this exclusive, pre-release screening.
At first glance Miss Leslie's Dolls may seem like a patchwork of horror film clichés, some already considered campy by the 1970s; for example, its 'Old Dark House' premise was memorably parodied in George Kuchar's subversive Thundercrack, two years later. Horror fans will spot major references, from Psycho, via various Wax Museums, to more subtle 'borrowings', such as an opening sequence which seems to channel Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls.
But, after a couple of reels in familiar territory, Miss Leslie's Dolls spins off into realms where all those traditional horror tropes seem to have spliced their cinematic DNA with Ed Wood's Glen Or Glenda in a truly unique – perhaps even metaphysical – take on gender fluidity!
It is appropriate that such a bizarre cinematic experience has an equally unusual back story. It was made in Florida – already a hub for nudie cuties and Herschel Gordon Lewis's forays into grand guignol – by Cuban exiles from Castro's regime. Salvador Ugarte, co-founder of an influential Spanish language theatre in Miami, gives an extraordinary performance as Miss Leslie; meanwhile cult cinema fans will recognise Marcelle Bichette from Lewis's The Gruesome Twosome and Charles Pitt from Russ Meyer's Supervixens.
What of the film's director? With Miss Leslie's Dolls, nothing is ever simple and, while the credit is for Joseph G. Prieto, over the years, there have been claims that the film was actually made by Joseph P. Mawra, notorious for the Madame Olga kinkies.
Erotic Film Society founder JJ Marsh will attempt to cast light – albeit a flickering, yellow light from a hooded lantern – on the many mysteries surrounding the making of Miss Leslie's Dolls and will reveal some recent discoveries.
So – dare you join us for an evening of trans-tastic play with Miss Leslie?
The presentation will start promptly at 8:00pm; doors open at 7:30pm for some suitably strange pre-show treats.
The Erotic Film Society aims to encourage appreciation and enjoyment of cinematic sex in all its many, diverse manifestations; and to encourage quality in contemporary erotic cinema.
Owing to the nature of this event, strictly over 18 only. Proof of age and identity may be requested. We reserve the right to refuse admission.
For further information and updates on our discoveries, please follow us on Twitter ( @eroticfilmsoc) or join us at: http://www.eroticfilmsociety.org/
For more details about the Blu-Ray and DVD please visit https://networkonair.com/