• Tango Of Perversion

    Released by: Mondo Macabro
    Released on: August 18th, 2015.
    Director: Kostas Karagiannis (as Dacosta Carayan)
    Cast: Larry Daniels, Dorothy Moore, Erika Raffael, Vagelis Voulgaridis
    Year: 1974
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    The Movie:

    Kostas Karagiannis (as Dacosta Carayan) directs this trashy little blast of vintage Greek weirdness that centers around a nightclub called Club Tango. Here we meet a scuzzy guy named Stathis (Larry Daniels) who digs mistreating his girlfriend, Joanna (Erika Raffael), almost as much as he digs nose candy. His habits are rubbing off on pretty Joanna in a bad way though, as she’s got a taste for the white powder that’s quickly turning into a pretty serious problem for her.

    In addition to peddling coke, Stathis also has a nice little side business going as a male prostitute who caters to wealthy, middle-aged ladies in need of a little companionship. Understandably, Joanna isn’t really too stoked about this, but Stathis’ impotent pal Joachim (Vagelis Voulgaridis) doesn’t seem to mind, in fact he lets him use his swingin’ pad as his base of operations. What Stathis doesn’t know is that Joachim has actually setup a secret room with a one-way mirror and a film projector that he rents out to those with voyeuristic tendencies, letting those willing to pay peep in on Stathis’ activities and enjoy a movie at the same time. Things get complicated when Joachim lets a woman named Rosita (Dorothy Moore) into the room where things heat up between she and Joanna. Unfortunately for everyone, Stathis figures out what’s happening and goes into a rage, killing Rosita in the process and sending Joanna scurrying out into the streets.

    What Stathis doesn’t realize is that Joachim’s camera was running the whole time and what Joachim doesn’t realize is that he’s got a thing for hot dead chicks.

    Tango Of Perversion is a pretty sordid tale about a pretty sordid lot but it makes for pretty fantastic entertainment. Stathis is the catalyst for all of this, and he gets what he gives as the movie progresses. Daniels does a great job of bringing this ridiculously sleazy character to life with all sorts of manic enthusiasm for carnality and violence. He plays the part perfectly well and while he’s the type of guy you love to hate, you can’t help but want to know how his story will end. The rest of the cast turn in equally nutty work here. Vagelis Voulgaridis is just as fun to watch as he crafts a character obviously dealing with his own sexual frustrations and hang ups even while catering to those over others willing to pay for his services. Dorothy Moore and Erika Raffael are hardly innocents here but their behavior pales in comparison to that demonstrate by the male characters in the movie.

    As the plot unfolds it provides plenty of opportunity for some delightfully exploitative set pieces, though the movie definitely infers far more than it depicts. The night club setting not only allows for the introduction of some colorful supporting characters but even a few musical/dance numbers too – unexpected as they are, they add some ‘local color’ to the Greek production. All of this is wrapped up in some great cinematography that does a great job of capturing the various locations used and with a memorably wonky score that suits the story quite perfectly.


    Mondo Macabro debuts Tango Of Perversion on DVD in its proper 1.33.1 fullframe aspect ratio and while some scratches and print damage shows up from time to time, this is more than watchable. The color reproduction here is pretty strong, which is kind of a big deal given how swirly and weird a lot of the color schemes photographed in the movie really are. Black levels are good, detail is decent and all in all, the movie is more than watchable even if the elements available prevent it from hitting reference quality levels.

    Audio options are provided in Greek and English tracks with optional subtitles available in English only. No problems here – the audio sounds fine, the levels are well balanced and any hiss that might creep into the mix is minor.

    The main extra on the disc is a twenty-four minute long featurette called Sunshine And Shadows that allows Greek film critic and musician Akis Kapranos wax nostalgic about the Greek exploitation filmmaking scene. Kaparnos’ insight is complimented by an impressive collection of cover and poster art from various releases as well as some pretty tantalizing clips. This is interesting, entertaining and a nice addition to the disc.

    Aside from that we get an insightful essay on the history of the film, the alternate English language opening credits created for the UK VHS release, cast and crew bios, a separate essay on the movie’s history, menus and chapter selection and of course the always amazing Mondo Macabro preview reel.

    The Final Word:

    Tango Of Perversion is pretty entertaining stuff. It’s sleazy to be sure but there’s plenty of style to appreciate and a great score here to compliment some really fun performances. Mondo Macabro offer up the movie uncut and in pretty decent shape with some choice extras too.