Retro Porn Review – A Touch of Genie

October 26, 2014
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Retro Porn Review - A Touch of Genie

The mid-70s were a time when the token neurotic Jewish New Yorker was a well-known character in American cinema. Woody Allen was in his prime and many comics and actors were milking the idiosyncrasies of their culture for comedic purposes.

Legendary porn director Joe Sarno, who grew up in New York and had a Jewish mother of his own whose influence is very noticeable in this movie, certainly wasn’t a stranger to the archetype.

Sarno (under the Swedish-inspired pseudonym Karl Andersson) wrote and directed A Touch of Genie, the story of a scrawny Jewish man named Melvin (played by Douglas Stone, in his only role in front of a camera), who grew up in the Lower East Side with an overbearing mother, a store to look after and a lifetime of poor luck with the ladies. His only escape was during his long lunch breaks, when he’d visit the infamous porn theaters in Times Square, fantasizing to be just like the actors he admired, “schtooping” every girl available.

One day he found a bottle with an opening ample enough to accommodate his dick after one of his mid-afternoon dirty flicks got him a little too excited. To his surprise, a cute blond genie (Chris Jordan) came out of it, wearing an appropriately skimpy genie outfit. She informed him she could only come out if a master “rubbed the inside of her jar”, at which Melvin was successful. For helping her out of the bottle, she would now grant him five wishes (because apparently times had changed since genies only took care of three wishes. And also, this is a feature film; it probably needed the extra sex scenes!)

Retro Porn Review - A Touch of Genie

Melvin essentially only wanted one thing: To be like his porn actor heroes. All men he knew about that were in control and were getting laid often were porn actors, he chose to turn into them with his wishes. He’d become Harry Reems, or Marc Stevens (who played themselves in the film) and fuck the starlets of his dreams, primarily the beautiful Tina Russell.

His mom (played fairly well by the very not-so-appropriately-named Ultramax) was present everywhere; and on top of controlling his everyday life, she also would somehow sneak into his fantasies, even during a couple of his porn scenes, which got Melvin understandably uncomfortable but provided some nice comic relief.

Like most geeky guys in movies that end up living a player’s life for brief moments, Melvin managed to be completely oblivious to his genie’s flirty advances and remained just asking for random sexual encounters using another body because of his massive insecurity on his own.

It’s cool to see a very non-prototypical porn actor having the lead. In general the acting is well taken care of by most of the cast, and the silly moments don’t feel particularly bad and are kind of endearing. Sarno made good adult movies, and this was no exception. The film doesn’t try to come off as anything too ambitious, and in that regard it succeeded in what it did attempt to be: A light-hearted Jewish comedy that is explicit yet charming and relatable.

http://youtu.be/Kiv1ykdJ5os

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