Saturday, September 27, 2014

Dr. Jones, I Presume?: INDIANA JOAN IN THE BLACK HOLE OF MAMMOO (1984)

Hard to believe it has been four years since our coverage of Indiana Jones rip-offs.  We set out to cover everything under the sun, from animated movies to Italian carbon copies to adult features.  While it was exhaustive (and exhausting), we still left quite a few relics unearthed knowing we would get to them one day.  One group of treasures was the XXX series of ‘80s INDIANA JOAN flicks, scarce thanks mostly to the ancient technology format known as VHS. Given that we are video archaeologists as dogged as Dr. Jones himself, we finally found a copy of the first feature, INDIANA JOAN IN THE BLACK HOLE OF MAMMOO (1984).  And having watched it, we kind of wish we had a Belloq-type rival who would snatch it from our hands before we could watch it and taunt, “There is nothing you can possess which I can not take away.”  Please take it away! Please!

The film opens with a long held shot of the wake of boat as the credits unroll over some stock tribal music.  We then get a “somewhere in an African coastal village…” segue that brings us to a cheap cave set where a witch doctor (Melvin Ward) and one of the female villagers (Satin Summer) speak in some made up language.  He points to his crotch and we quickly jump into our first sex scene four minutes in.  Following this coupling, we cut to three people in a life boat, leaving it to the audience to infer that the opening boat footage somehow involved them.  It appears these are survivors from a boat wreck (again, we never see it) and they include Joan (Barbie Dahl), her father imaginatively credited as Daddy (George Payne), and Captain Jim (Michele LeBouef, no relation to Shia but probably a better actor).  Somehow this wreck is all her fault as her dad admonishes her adventurous ways by saying, “We should have stay in Indiana, Joan.”  Wah-wah-wahhhh!  Driven near mad from the lack of water, Joan begins to hallucinate. We know this because onscreen text says this:


Director Vince Benedetti isn’t leaving anything to chance.  His big mistake is he assumes his target audience can read.  Anyway, her hallucination is having sex with Captain Jim.  Jeez, you’d think her imagination would pick a better looking guy.


After this laborious scene (that ends with Joan masturbating with an oar; alas it is faked, my dear oar sex lovers) the survivors spot land and begin rowing toward it.  Naturally, the natives are restless and they are greeting by two spear-wielding female natives (they are billed as Amazons, despite this taking place in Africa).  In the film’s lone unintentional highlight, watch as one girl winces when she throws her spear, afraid it might hit the video camera.  We assume one of these weapons hits Daddy since he is on the ground in the next shot in pain.  Yes, Benedetti couldn’t be bothered to show something as simple as a spear hitting someone.  Joan and Jim split while Daddy gets a spear in the gut – via the age-old “stick it by my side” technique – for his trouble.  Our leads make it to another cheap cave set and Jim soon discovers (by walking two feet) that this is a diamond mine.  Oh snap, sudden wealth means only one thing – we need to fornicate as the characters dive into the film’s third sex scene.  “I’ve been dreaming about this for days,” says Joan in the flattest tone ever.  Now I really must credit the performers here as this entire scene takes place on a bed of hay and I can’t imagine that being comfortable at all.  Once Joan and Jim get their fill, the two African ladies with spears show up.  One of them is enamored by the sight of a white woman and we quickly move into our fourth sex scene as Joan and Amazon #1 (Hazel Scott) make out and Amazon #2 orally services Jim.


Nice Nikes:


Meanwhile (this film seems to have a lot of those), back at the first cheap cave set, the witchdoctor starts fondling the body of Joan’s surviving mother (Sarah Bernard). Again, creativity reigns supreme as she is named Mother.  With his dildo-topped staff, he sprinkles some powder on her and keeps saying “unka dunka.”  This invites Mammoo (Creole Mann), the tribe chief, for a three-way.  We just assume he is the tribe chief since his name is in the title.  After this ménage à trios, the two female villagers arrive with their prisoners.  Mother has adapted quickly as she is feeding Mammoo a banana (booooooo!) as he sits on his throne, looking a bit like Baron Samedi from LIVE AND LET DIE (1973).  Mammoo examines the white beauty and Mother quickly breaks it down for her daughter by saying, “You better get used to this, honey. In this place you either give head or lose it.”  Oddly enough, I hear that is also the mantra around Bryan Singer’s office.

“Nope, no cavities here.”


Joan gives in and starts giving the chief a blowjob, which results in a full blown (haha) orgy involving all of our players. The film slogs to a climax as everyone does a mambo line out of the cave set and Joan stops to flash her rear. The end.

Unka dunka indeed.  Our first foray into the Dr. Jones XXX parody was CAROLINA JONES AND THE BROKEN COVENANT (2008).  Little did we know that it would look like a masterpiece compared to this first Indiana Joan offering.  I’ve often bemoaned the state of current XXX parodies being nothing more than glorified adult cosplay, with the actors having sex while dressed up in costumes.  Sadly, this seems to be an age old problem in the adult industry. THE BLACK HOLE OF MAMMOO earns respect for being the first to cash in on the adventures of Dr. Jones, but that is about it.  If anything, it is just another case of missed opportunity.  How lazy is this film?  They actually never have Indiana Joan handle a whip like on the cover.  And the film isn’t whip-less as one of the native females carries one in one scene.  Perhaps Benedetti didn’t trust Dahl to handle anything other than a penis?  Then again, maybe I’m just an idiot for expecting creativity from the guy who made FOOT FUCKIN’ FREAKS 2 (2001)?  His ROMANCING THE BONE from the same year must be better, right?


Coupling its laziness is the dreaded cousin cheapness.  Look, I know you aren’t working with the millions Spielberg and Lucas had on RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (1982), but is it possible to find more than two cheap cave sets to set your action?  Amazingly, the movie’s biggest attempt at production value is an end credit that claims it was partially filmed in Madagascar.  Uh, no.  I bet they couldn’t even locate Madagascar on a map.  Oh wait, I can’t locate it on a map either.  All would be forgiven if Benedetti offered up some hot action between the stilted dialogue scenes on cheap sets.  But even that is a missed opportunity.  I know what you are thinking – 1984 and shot-on-video?  This has to have some vintage babes in it, right? Sadly, this is not the case.  Dahl is alright in the lead, but the director has filled the cast with some rather unsightly folks.  Even worse, the sex scenes are so poorly filmed, mostly a combination of clinical close ups of body parts thrusting that drift in and out of focus (see pic above).  For example, the threesome scene never actually features a wide shot with all three performers in the shot at the same time.  Yeah, I’m demanding, I know.  It is about as erotic as watching a film on the motion of pistons.  The only thing I can imagine that is more dreary than watching this is probably reading my review of it.


Not surprisingly, Benedetti revived the Indiana Joan name five years later when INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE (1989) came out.  Dahl was long gone so the whip was passed to one Porsche Lynn in THE RETURN OF INDIANA JOAN and INDIANA JOAN AND THE GOLDEN TRIANGLE. We currently have top men out looking for them.  Top…men.

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