March Movie Madness & Mayhem, Day 24: Hagsploitation!

Hagsploitation: a term that I possibly just thought up or I stole it from someone else (but can’t remember who it was). Either way, it’s a term that usually brings to mind actresses “of a certain age,” like Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Shelley Winters or even Debbie Reynolds (when she and Winters starred in What’s the Matter With Helen, she was all of 38 years old!)

However, hagsploitation wasn’t just for women—any time you saw an old vaudevillian like George Jessel in Won Ton Ton, the Dog Who Saved Hollywood, it was hagsploitation. Sure, it was said to be a cameo, but come on, we know what it was, and it was hagsploitation, pure and simple.

Now this may sound like I’m knocking older actors for appearing in films long past their “prime.” Come on—I’m a Stooge fan that wanted to see Howard, Sitka and DeRita in Blazing Stewardesses—I can hardly be called anti-hag! Interestingly, it was director Al Adamson’s leitmotif—giving older actors a chance to get in front of new audiences. Whether or not the vehicles used for that chance were any good or not…well, work is work!

Enjoy these sites and their reviews of hagsploitation films!

What’s the Matter With Helen? (1971) from Dreams Are What Le Cinema Is For… it’s got repressed lesbianism, murderous sons, and religious fundamentalism.

What's the Matter With Helen

Blazing Stewardesses (1975) from DVD Drive-In…

Blazing Stewardesses

Last but not least, Won Ton Ton, the Dog Who Saved Hollywood (1976), from The Aisle Seat…

Won Ton Ton

If it’s the LAST thing I do!

Blazing Stewardesses one sheet

Greetings, fellow degenerates, and welcome to something I hope will be worth reading, a little thing called “If It’s The Last Thing I Do!” which will focus on the last films of…well, a bunch of people, actually. I mean, who can forget Veronica Lake’s last turn as a Hitler-hating doctor in “Flesh Feast”? Or Laurel and Hardy’s final film, “Atoll K?”

For the most part, I’ll be sticking to the 1970s. Why? Look, if you’ve seen the 70s, you know why. No, seriously. Have you seen the 70s?! The movies, the music, the fashions, the recipes! The 1970s were a glorious disaster, which is fitting, since there were soooo many disaster movies filmed in the decade.

With that smooth transition, I bring you to the last film of our first (and second!) subject: “Blazing Stewardesses.”  This film was the swan song of two popular comedy teams, although you’re probably more familiar with the first: the Three Stooges. You see, Blazing Stewardesses  (then titled The Jet Set) was to star America’s favorite comedy trio…and their replacement was…sort of…well, they were a trio, and they weren’t exactly America’s favorite comedy trio, but trust me, you’ve probably heard of these guys:

Here’s Part 2:

Yep, it’s a trio of two!

Fans (and YouTube commenters) seem to think that the material…well, stinks.  It’s hard to imagine if the Stooges would’ve been doing a similar routine, since Moe wanted to ad-lib most of the material. However, if this is what the Stooges were going to do, well, let’s just say I’m glad Kook’s Tour was their swan song.