• Peekarama: Velvet High/Summertime Blue



    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome
    DVD Release Date: January 30th, 2018.
    Director: John Christopher
    Cast: Misty Regan, Serena, Arcadia Lake, Samantha Fox, John Holmes, Eric Edwards, Christie Ford, Jerry Butler, Carter Stevens
    Year: 1980/1979
    Purchase From Amazon

    The Movies:

    Vinegar Syndrome’s fantastic Peekarama line continues with this latest double feature pairing up two films directed by John Christopher.

    Velvet High:

    The first film tells the story of a high school cheerleader named Velvet (the beautiful Misty Regan), the most popular girl in the entire school. While Velvet’s got all the attention a girl her age could want, she just can’t quite seem to get off the way that he other girls on the cheerleading team - Merle Michaels, Christie Ford and Robin Sane - can.

    Of course, this doesn’t stop Velvet from trying. First up is a romp with J.P. Yetty Jr. (Rod Pierce), and then with Jimmy (Jerry Butler). After that she plays around with a fellow cheerleader (Sane) and a lucky stud (Ron Hudd) and then has another lesbian experience with Christie Ford. All the while, the crass guy who works at the gas station named Piggy (Carter Stevens) and fills up her Mercedes has been hitting on her. She’s never been interested or paid him much mind… but eventually all of that will change.

    Sure, this is really light on story but that doesn’t matter so much because the picture is a lot of fun. The cast are all clearly enjoying themselves, the sex is carefree and almost whimsical in spots, never nasty or rough in any way, and the movie has a pleasantly happy ending. The cinematography is quite nice, the plot never gets in the way of the sex nor the sex in the way of the plot, and the picture is well paced. The movie also features some interesting ‘borrowed’ music, such as selections from what sounds an awful lot like the Dressed To Kill soundtrack and the MC5’s classic track High School.

    The performances are decent from all involved but it’s top billed Misty Regan who steals the show. She not only looks fantastic here but is also clearly having a great time doing what she does. The fact that she gets a lot of screen time here doesn’t hurt things either.

    Summertime Blue:

    The lesser of the two pictures, this one starts off with a prolonged scene where two girls, Holly (Arcadia Lake) and Janice (Lynda Mantz), dance around to the latest hit disco record. It’s the last day of summer and they intend to see the season out with a bang. Of course, this means they strip down and get involved in some lesbian action (complete with a double-ended dong that Holly tells her friend she’s borrowed from her dad, who brought it back with him on a trip to Europe!), unaware that their boyfriends, George (Eric Edwards) and Danny (Ron Hudd), are outside watching through the window, taking pictures.

    Once the girls finish up, the guys come in, drink some Coors, and they all get to talking. Before they inevitably all have sex, we hear a few stories about some exploits that occurred over the summer. See, George has been working on his photography skills all summer, which led to a group grope with Samantha Fox, Bethana and Roger Caine. It also led to his spying on a guy named John (John Holmes), dubbed Captain Tongue to those who know him well, as he plays around with a lovely lady named Candy Johnson (Serena). Sufficiently fired up, Edwards boffs Lake and Hudd sticks it to Mantz, after which we’re treated to another scene with Holmes and Serena and then the finale with Edwards’ brother caught in bed with an unidentified black girl!

    This basically feels like a loop carrier with the main ‘story’ involving our four friends connecting the otherwise unrelated scenes. As such, there’s really not much here in the way of plot at all. The movie has some high points, however. Lake and Edwards, a real life couple at one point, have good chemistry here and the scenes with Holmes and Serena are solid. Mantz falls flat here, she’s dopey looking and looks kind of out of it but if this is far from essential viewing neither is it a complete waste of time. Interestingly enough, Roberta Findlay appears to have been the cinematographer on this, credited as Anna Riva.

    Video/Audio/Extras:

    Both films are presented in 1.85.1 anamorphic widescreen in transfers taken from new 2k scans of 16mm archival elements. These transfers are fairly grainy but the images are mostly clean, free of all but minor print damage. Color reproduction looks good and there are no noticeable issues with compression artifacts, edge enhancement or noise reduction.

    Each movie gets the English language Dolby Digital Mono treatment. Clarity is just fine in each film with the music used in each feature sounding nice and clear. Balance is fine in each picture and while range is understandably limited by the original elements you can always understand the dialogue well enough.

    Aside from static menus and film/reel selection, the disc also includes an audio interview with Misty Regan conducted by Casey Scott. This plays as an alternate audio track over Velvet High, basically like an audio commentary track, and it’s fairly specific to the film at hand. As the jovial conversation plays out, she talks about what she did before getting into the adult film industry, how she had just turned eighteen when she made Velvet High, working with John Holmes early in her career, friendships that she made in the industry throughout her career, making her feature film debut on Tobalina’s Three Ripening Cherries and how it was Tobalina’s Mercedes that she drives in Velvet High. She talks about taking the name Misty and then Misty Regan and Misty Middleton, working as a dancer when she wasn’t working on films, how much fun she had working on Velvet High, how she has no regrets about what she did in the adult film industry and quite a bit more. The interview runs just over an hour in length and sounds like it was recorded over Skype, so it’s a bit rough in spots, but the content is great.

    The Final Word:

    Vinegar Syndrome’s DVD double feature release of Velvet High/Summertime Blue is worth picking up more for the first feature than the second, but even the second feature has its moments. The presentation is as solid as you’d expect from the label at this point and the inclusion of the interview with Misty Regan is quite an interesting bonus feature.