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Tanya/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< Tanya
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If the following story seems to be true one, it is because art mirrors life.

In today's day and age, an adult film is regulated to exploit or to spoof something of pop culture. Be it a television show or a popular, blockbuster film. But to make a parody or a real-life, headlining event? It's almost unthinkable to do so. But this being The GCDb, you should know by now that anything goes...

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Obviously drawing inspiration from the true accounts of Patty Hearst, the daughter of a business tycoon who was kidnapped by a revolutionary group and, as a result, became (Presumably) brainwashed by her captives and resorted to crime. Though a few other filmed productions of this topic would soon follow, none would venture into the territory that Tanya would dive into.

The film opens with a newscaster (I. Whitnast) adressing the audience of the kidnapping of Charlotte Kane (Maria Arnold), the daughter of Charles Kane (Name sound familiar?) Charlotte finds herself at an abandoned church face to face with the members of the S.L.A. (The Symphonic Liberation Army) Among it's members are the quiet and articulate, Prissy (Susan Ayers) Ex-band drummer, Harold (Bobby Russell, think of him as Michael J. Pollard with a bald spot and a handyman moustache), tough-girl Penny (Played by the always reliable, Tallie Chochrane) giant afro-wearing, Pat Nixon (Shani Nyota) and the S.L.A.'s outspoken leader, "Field Marshall" Cinque (B.B. Hinds)

Cinque lectures Charlotte of the group's intentions hoping to provoke fear and awareness to the future destruction of the "Insect Pigs" (Cinque's hilarious term for fascists), but instead of achieving the desired effects, Charlotte is just completely dim-witted and oblivious to the matter. Having no use for her, Cinque then offers Charlotte to become one of their own. Charlotte also might even get the idea that these revolutionaries might not be as threatening once she discovers how much sex-swapping occurs with the group! But once Charlotte opens up her own sexuality and (In voiceover) discovers what freedom's all about, she is reborn as "Tanya", the revolutionary nymphomaniac!

As soon as you saw the name, Symphonic Liberation Army, you would already know that this wasn't supposed to be taken seriously. And if that didn't take further conviction, watch for the scene when Harold and Pat do "Undercover work". And if that doesn't do the job, watch for the sequence when Cinque pulls out his weapons to do battle with "The Insects"! Tanya nearly bares all the elements that one can find in various, standard softcore comedies circa 1971-1976. Longtime fans of the genre might not find anything particulary new with this film, but even if the film wasn't based on a hot topic, you're given rare, stand-out performances from the two leads.

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Marie Arnold was often a familiar face in bit roles or supporting parts in various BIP films and other sex romps, but this film her allowed her one of the rare leading roles in her filmography. Here, she at least gets to show a little bit of range evolving from a insecure dunce to a sex-starved militant. But undoubtedly, the film's biggest stealer is B.B. Hinds' performance as Cinque. Almost playing the role of the "Revolutionary Brother" completely straight to a tee, but blending an often un-noticed, high camp delivery to the part. I really wish I could have seen more from this actor. The film score (Performed by S.W.A.T) is also a welcomed addition. The fresh, rock/funk music helps provide more than a breath of fresh air to deviate from many of the monotonous sex scenes.

The constant sex, the dated humor, the claustraphobic nature (Being that the film seems to take place entirely on one location) and the lack of a detailed finale means that Tanya is an acquired taste for most. But in the world of sex-spoofs that deal with touchy subjects, Tanya shouldn't go entirely unnoticed.

Reviewed by Laydback

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