The Immoral Mr. Teas
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The Immoral Mr. Teas
|Alternate title(s):||Steam Heat
Mr. Teas and His Playthings (Great Britain)
L'Immoral M. Teas (Canada & Belgium)
|Running time:||63 minutes|
|Company:||PAD-RAM Enterprises, Inc.|
|Directed by:||Russ Meyer|
(uncredited - torso only)
|Written by:||Russ Meyer|
|Music by:||Edward J. Lasko|
|Editing by:||Russ Meyer
John F. Link
|Websites and databases|
The Immoral Mr. Teas is a 1959 film directed by Russ Meyer. The first of Meyer's three breakthrough films, which created new genres and indirectly influenced the mainstream cinema, The Immoral Mr. Teas was the first "nudie-cutie" and Meyer's first commercially successful film.
Before this film was released, the only moving pictures exhibiting extensive nudity were either underground (covertly produced and distributed) pornographic films, typically distributed "under the counter" in 16 mm black and white movies, or naturist pictures, openly displayed in specialized movie theaters, usually under the cover of exhibiting the fun and freedom of nudism in naturist reserves (nudist camps).
 A breakthrough
The Immoral Mr. Teas was the first American "above ground" movie since the pre-Code early sound era to show female nudity without the pretext of naturism. It is considered to be the first commercially viable American "skin flick" and popularized the nudie cutie genre.
The movie consists of a series of short scenes. In a sense, no one is actually naked; the only nudity seen is through the viewpoint and vivid imagination of Mr. Teas. Mr. Teas' mental constructions extend beyond the nudity (always exclusively of female characters)—there is an underlying surrealism in Mr. Teas' imagination that results in a number of genuinely bizarre situations.
 A typical scene
Mr. Teas attends an appointment with his dentist, who must perform an extraction of a molar. Naturally, the dentist has an assistant—a stunningly beautiful and not-quite modestly dressed assistant. The application of analgesics appropriate to the procedure quickly releases Mr. Teas' fertile imagination, and we see the scene through this viewpoint. Rather than the typical equipment–cluttered dental office we are on a set—only a dentist, a dental chair, Mr. Teas, and the assistant are present—against a stark and simple background. Only now the assistant is completely nude. As the procedure is completed the dentist removes the molar from Mr. Teas' mouth—but rather than only a small object in the extraction pliers the molar has the appearance of a single large staghorn (deer antler) with a number of points. The body of the "molar" is white, while each tip (representing the roots of the molar) is colored a bloody red. Mr. Teas has paid a price for his lustful imagination.
- Bill Teas ... Mr. Teas
- Ann Peters ... Coffeeshop Waitress
- Marilyn Wesley ... Dental Assistant
- Michele Roberts ... Secretary (as Mischele Roberts)
- Dawn Danielle ... Beach Beauty
- Don Cochran ... Burlesque Stage Manager (uncredited)
- Althea Currier ... Girl (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
- Peter A. DeCenzie ... Burlesque Announcer (uncredited)
- G. Ferrus ... Narrator (uncredited)
- Mikki France ... Psychiatrist (uncredited)
- Monica Liljistrand ... Woman (unconfirmed) (uncredited)
- Russ Meyer ... Burlesque Audience Member (uncredited)
- Eric 'Mick' Nathanson ... Loverboy / Burlesque Audience Member (uncredited)
- June Wilkinson ... Nude Torso in Window (uncredited)
 Contemporary reception
The Immoral Mr. Teas was not well-received by mainstream critics, and had to undergo charges of obscenity. In deeming the film non-pornographic, a Philadelphia judge still pointed out that The Immoral Mr. Teas was "vulgar, pointless, and in bad taste." Charles Stinson, of the Los Angeles Times, wrote that the film "has much the same subtle, urbane wit to be found in any one of our undergraduate humor magazines."
- Deming, Mark. The Immoral Mr. Teas (English). All Movie Guide. Retrieved on August 9, 2008.
- ↑ Infobox data from Frasier, David K. (1998). Russ Meyer : The Life and Films : A Biography and A Comprehensive, Illustrated, and Annotated Filmography and Bibliography. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co, p. 203. ISBN 0-7864-0472-8.
- ↑ Frasier (1998), p. 5.
- ↑ "'Vulgar, Pointless, in Bad Taste' but 'Mr. Teas' Not Pornography". Variety, November 2, 1960.
- ↑ Stinson, Charles. "'Immoral Mr. Teas' Ends Era in Movies", The Los Angeles Times, January 26, 1960.