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Desire under the Palms

USA 1968
produced by
Kenn Collins for Rasnel Films
directed by Joe Sarno
starring Barbara Lance, Rene Howard, Ulla Jensen, Dale Rene, Susan Martin, Charlotte Brody, Lola Perez, Dana Cordier, Orando Childs, Howard Muniz (= Chuck Traynor)
written by Joe Sarno, music by Michael Colicchio (as Sandy McVane)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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To escape her boring life as a housewife - at least for a few hours at a time - Betty (Barbara Lance) has taken to writing and has already published a few articles in housewife magazines ... but that still leaves her unfulfilled. So her literary agent Stacey suggests to write erotic short stories, which after some initial hesitation Betty virtually throws herself into - and Stacey turns them all down. Basically, Betty's stories lack imagination and experience. So Stacey suggests that Betty would "live a little" to get into the swing. Betty is happily married though ...

Betty's first attempt to gather some experience by simply watching some friends fuck ends with her running away because she's too full of inhibitions, but her acquaintance with a young girl, Tenny, leads to her meeting Tenny's uncle, who is, let's say, sexually very liberated. Betty soon starts having an affair with him, and he opens her up to all sorts of sexual play, including three- and foursomes, lesbian sex, even light S/M.

As much as Betty enjoys having sex with all these people in all these ways, she feels bad for cheating on her husband (Howard Muniz), so she persuades Tenny to have an affair with him - to which Tenny agrees only if Betty watches them having sex.

Seeing her husband have sex with Tenny almost breaks Betty's heart, and yet she can't stop, well, fucking around - and that almost breaks up their marriage.


Somewhat of a transitional Joe Sarno film: While his early efforts were (for its time) very steamy dramas that showed very little to nothing in terms of actual nudity (again a sign of the times), his later efforts would push softcore sex to the very boundaries (actual hardcore porn just wasn't a place he wanted to go). Desire under the Palms though was made at a time when censorship was just beginning to loosen, which might explain that the sex scenes all look a bit awkward and simply lack the elegance of Sarno's later sex films while not being nearly as on-target as his earlier more buttoned-up dramas.

Not really the film Sarno will ever be remembered for, but for his fans at least interesting to watch as it shows his evolution as a director.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD