Sunday, May 20, 2012

Pin Down Girl - The Low Down On Pin Down Girls!

By Steve S. Stones

Anyone interested in the films and career of cult director Ed Wood may take some interest in this 1951 exploitation feature – Pin Down Girl. It stars two of Wood’s stock actors – Timothy Farrell and Mona McKinnon. McKinnon’s role is a short cameo role in a brief scene. Farrell starred in Wood’s transvestite epic - Glen or Glenda, and his 1954 film Jail Bait with body builder Steve Reeves.

If you’ve seen Glen or Glenda and Jailbait, you know Farrell has a reputation for having a dry, monotone voice that makes his performances unbelievable, not to mention unbearable. Farrell stars as crooked sports promoter named Umberto Scalli, who runs a gym used as a front for illegal gambling activities, prostitution and pill peddling.

Busty blonde bombshell wrestler Peaches Page signs a contract with Scalli to further her career. Peaches later falls in love with Scalli, but is warned by his former girlfriend Ruby to keep her distance. Scalli owes a large sum of money to the local mob kingpin named Mr. Big.

The film is full of hilariously staged wrestling matches between beefy women and wrestlers working out on low impact exercise equipment in the gym. Real life wrestling champions Clara Mortensen and Rita Martinez join Peaches in at least one scene. Director of photography, William C. Thompson, who lensed Ed Wood’s cult masterpiece – Plan 9 From Outer Space, also lensed Pin Down Girl. The film was originally titled Racket Girls and was produced by George Weiss, whose other films include Wood’s Glen or Glenda, Test Tube Babies and Dance Hall Racket.

Watch carefully for a scene in Tim Burton’s 1994 film – Ed Wood where Wood, played by Johnny Depp, visits producer George Weiss in his office to convince him that he should direct – I Changed My Sex (later retitled: Glen or Glenda). The office wall has a poster of Pin Down Girl hanging in the background.

Alpha Video, as known as, recently released a DVD print of Pin Down Girl in 2012. The film has not been digitally remastered, so the image quality is in poor condition throughout most of the film. However, it is still watchable. Happy viewing!!

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