Honky Tonk Girl

2409. HONKY TONK GIRL (1941-USA). This mind-boggingly hilarious cinematic “expo begins with what amounts to an unintentionally funny sermon. “There never was and never will another picture like this presented in our city,” the viewer is told. Its story is a “dramatic thunderbolt that “ridicules false modesty” and “exposes the shame of misguided youth.” Its makers “hope that by the grace of God youth may be saved from this horrible SIN and SHAME and guided down the road of cleansing after seeing this picture.” Of course, what follows is an exploitation movie whose sole reason for being is to arouse its audience. Near the end of the opening credits, several pretty young women in various stages of sluttishness peer seductively at the camera as they stick out their thumbs as if to hitch rides. Their boss is a pimp-like creep named Slavic. He operates a racket in which his “girls” pose as hitchhikers. “How far are you going?” a driver might ask. To which the dame will respond, “Well, I don’t know. Just as far as you like.” Heading the fist of additional characters is a bartender who serves the girls their liquor hard and straight as he babbles incessantly about how the world has become a rotten place, Next comes his son, an innocent whose vocabulary consists of words like “gosh” and “gee.” The film is at its funniest when Slavic laughs loudly and sadistically; his personality and villainy are about as subtle as a punch in the face. As you savor this film’s silliness, do not forget that it is a “story that is happening in your town today.” It is taken “directly from the official police records.” 51 minutes. Exploitation