Plot: DORIS WISHMAN has stated for the record that she’s never made any hardcore. Sorry, Doris, but I believe otherwise. Allegedly directed by one “Luigi Manicottale,” THE HAUNTED PUSSY, a.k.a. COME WITH ME MY LOVE , has all the earmarks of Doris’ crazed signature style: her loopy plotting (including the obligatory walk through Central Park), oddball cutaways to inanimate objects, minimalist post-dubbing that makes everyone sound stoned, etc., etc. In fact, it’s virtually a catalogue of Wishman’s stylistic excesses, albeit with boners.
The Haunted Pussy, an X rated horror film began life during a cold New York winter of 1976 when it was known as the far less snappy sounding ‘Come With Me, My Love’. Opening in black and white the film begins in ‘Kenmare City 1925’, a couple make love while a sinister figure walks up the stairs to their room. The mystery man is Randolph (Jeffrey Hurst) who is greeted by the sight of his best friend on the job with his wife- observing them for a very long time Randolph pulls a gun from his pocket and shoots them. ‘Even in death you are not mine’ he whimpers to his wife’s bullet ridden corpse then blows his brains out. Fifty one years later the room where the bloodshed took place is now part of a high-rise building and has a new tenant in Abbie (Ursula Austin)- the mirror image of Randolph’s wife. Bizarre coincidence or is she a reincarnation of his unfaithful love? the ghost of Randolph doesn’t seen to care either way and by night emerges in negative from one of the walls and has his way with the agreeably confused Abbie. Randolph isn’t the only one to give Abbie some attention though and soon Abbie is offering bedspace to many of the other tenants as well as several passing oddballs (blasts of dirty wah-wah guitar music strike up the right mood). The ghostly Randolph is having none of it, and whenever anyone made out of flesh and bone gets their mitts on Abbie- the horny ghost murders them forthwith. First to go is the slimy boyfriend of Abbie’s neighbour Tess who lures Abbie to bed after finding her creeping around the cellar when the lights go out. Abbie’s lothario retreats back to his pad ‘that Abbie was some dish’ he muses while making idiotic macho poses in the mirror- but no sooner does he get into his bath than the ghost conveniently pushes in a radio after him. Later Abbie goes on a date with Bill (John Livermore) ‘what you need is a little loving’ he barks and soon is over at her apartment dispensing it. Chubby, bearded and genuinely bewildered looking Bill barely has time to get his shirt back on before the ghost pushes him out of a high rise window. With no one left to turn to Abbie confides in her chirpy neighbour Tess (Annie Sprinkle) but she too follows the tragic path of all the others- bedding Abbie and being slaughtered by the ghost. Tess’s demise is particularly noteworthy- setting the table in the nude (!), she encounters a levitating knife and is stabbed in the cleavage. It goes without saying that the New York City captured here was a fairly decadent time and as a base expression of the era The Haunted Pussy is characteristically rude and lewd. Not content with Abbie’s encounters with the spirit world- theres also nonsensical cutaways to a swingers party. Although tentatively woven into the narrative the scenario looks suspiciously like the sort of loop well requested on NYC’s adult jukeboxes of the time featuring Vanessa Del Rio (as Lola) as well as skinflick actor and erstwhile Italian cannibal movie hero R Bolla (aka Robert Kerman). The verdict? in all the X rated antics give the film an edge although twenty five or so years down the line its absurd premise seems far more anarchic. Parts of the film do however strike up an eerie tone, particularly when Abbie takes a walk around a deserted snow covered central park- theres a overwhelming sense of alienation as if Abbie never has belonged in this time something ironically supported by the climax. Little is really known about The Haunted Pussy’s commercial weight, although popular rumour has it that a heavily edited version was prepared for Cable TV, but to the best of anyones knowledge has never been transmitted. Perhaps the most quizzical aspect to the film is the ‘did she or didn’t she’ question mark as to cult favourite Doris Wishman’s direction. Although never officially recognised as part of the Wishman back catalogue theres enough here to justify the IMDB identifying The Haunted Pussy as a Wishman feature. Every wonderful Wishmanesque trait is present and correct- whether its obsessive shots of people’s feet, inappropriate music or the big tell tale sign of Wishman’s trademark post synched dialogue so uniquely off-kilter and otherworldly. That stock shots have been taken from Wishman’s feature Double Agent 73 raises an eyebrow as does the lengthy gap in the prolific Doris’ career between 1973’s The Immoral Three and 1978’s Let Me Die A Woman. We’ll probably never get a definite answer- but no matter The Haunted Pussy/Come With Me, My Love is either an authentic relic of Doris’ years in the wilderness or at the very least the best Doris Wishman movie Doris never made.
Unless Doris suddenly ’fesses up, Mr. Manicottale will have to remain the director of record.
- Scene 1. Ursula Austin, Terry Austin
- Scene 2. Nancy Dare, Vanessa del Rio, R. Bolla
- Scene 3. Ursula Austin, Jeffrey Hurst
- Scene 4. Ursula Austin, Levi Richards
- Scene 5. Ursula Austin, Jeffrey Hurst
- Scene 6. Annie Sprinkle, Roger Caine
- Scene 7. Annie Sprinkle, Ursula Austin, Ed Marshall, Roger Caine
- Scene 8. Ursula Austin, Ed Marshall
- Scene 9. Nancy Dare, Vanessa del Rio, Michael Gaunt, R. Bolla
- Scene 10. Annie Sprinkle, Ursula Austin