Body Fever (1969)
aka Deadlocked aka Supercool
Genre: Crime | Drama | Thriller
Country: USA | Director: Ray Dennis Steckler
Language: English | Subtitles: None
Aspect ratio: Widescreen 1.66:1 | Length: 77mn
Dvdrip H264 Mkv – 803×480 – 23.976fps – 1.21gb
Audio 2: Commentary by Director Ray Dennis Steckler
Amiable private detective Charlie Smith (a charming and likable performance by Ray Dennis Steckler) tries to find elusive cat burglar Carrie Erskine (Carolyn Brandt at her most foxy and enticing) who has stolen an expensive stash of heroin from ruthless drug ring kingpin Big Mack (robustly essayed with growly gusto by Bernard Fein). Charlie and Carrie plot together to double cross the gangsters who are after them.
Steckler does a sound job of covering all the nifty noir bases: Hard-boiled narration, grimy locations, a groovy jazz score by Henri Price, a tough gritty tone, an amusing sense of cynical humor, rough’n’tumble fisticuffs, several hot dames (Brandt in particular makes for a perfectly tasty and duplicitous femme fatale), a convoluted plot, and affectionate nods to Humphrey Bogart and vintage 40’s film noir classics.
The wonderfully seedy rogues’ gallery of colorful and entertaining low-life characters helps a whole lot: Dina Bryan as sassy secretary Stella, Larry Chandler as hippie pimp Waco, Ron Haydock as the smarmy Fritz the Photographer, Coleman Francis as down on his luck old-timer Coley, Julie Conners as alluring dingbat Shawn Call, Pat Jackson as zonked-out stoner Julie Richards, Herb Robins as wormy lackey Herbie, and, best of all, Gary Kent as vicious dope-peddling hoodlum Frankie Roberts. The slim budget and ragged production values add immensely to the overall deliciously seamy atmosphere. Jack Cooperman’s fairly polished cinematography boasts a few snazzy stylistic flourishes. A nice change of pace for Steckler.