I know the movie was made in 2004 and released in 2005, but I just finished watching Jack the Zipper's "Squealer" an hour ago and, unlike many porn films, I still remember it.
Fellas, if you're the type to dream of a farmhouse full of consensually bruisable porn girls and you yourself don't have a face, this film is for you. Read our review after the gap. - G. Ponante
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Review by Gram Ponante
While "Squealer" is not a light-but-poignant arthouse romp like, say, "Millions" or "Muriel's Wedding", don't believe detractors who say it is not a couples' film. The significant other who cuddles up to you to watch this "Grapes of Wrath"-meets-"Deliverance"-meets-"Charlotte's Web"-meets-"The Silence of the Lambs"-meets-Audrey Hollander's mouth is a keeper. In fact, you could probably keep 'er tied up in your basement.
This movie never stops being spookily and artfully shot, but it also doesn't collapse under those things (like Michael Ninn's "Catherine" did), despite an abrupt change of gears at the beginning of the movie in which several setup shots of a bleak farmhouse and its sepia envrons give way to sex that doesn't abate throughout the movie. Zipper adheres to the porn necessity of enough lingering shots of performers' precious real estate to justify minute-by-minute VOD sales.
In a weekend in the country not unlike a version of "The Big Chill" I might enjoy, the first scene starts with a bang. Several women writhe on a rug, only to be interrupted most entitledly by male talent who are only shot below the collar. As the movie continues it becomes clear that the target demographic is straight males and the women who love to service them in extreme environments: In other words, it doesn't matter that we don't see men's faces.
Each pale woman gets dirtier and more bruised as the action progresses to a barn, boathouse, and swamp around the property. Hustler's legal department has of late erred on the side of restraint in light of recent anti-porn rumblings in the government, but "Squealer" pushes many envelopes pertaining to bondage and rough sex, particularly in a scene in which Hollander's head is eased to a table set with a nearby arrangement of steak knives.
With the sounds of sex coming from a dub track and the occasional performer looking directly at the camera in full porn vogueing, this movie occasionally taps a hole in an otherwise complete picture of the creepy house in the woods where strange things happen. Strange, beautiful, dirty things.
The movie gets more and more graphic, but never blatant and gimmicky. Zipper's style of art-directed wall-to-wall sex movie is rare, so it will be interesting to see how he fits into Hustler's new "Hardline" extreme sex imprint.
In the meantime, "Squealer" is an intense little movie.
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Previously: Porn Valley Dispatch Archive