Friday, May 8, 2015

The Young Nurses (1973)

          The wheels came off the bus of New World Pictures’ sexy-nurse cycle with this fourth installment, which substitutes sleaze for story. And while it’s not as if the previous sexy-nurse movies were paragons of narrative ambition, the pictures mostly kept their exploitive elements in check by giving lip service to characterization and social issues. Throughout The Young Nurses, viewers are bludgeoned with confusing plot twists, nasty violence, and ogling topless shots. The only novel element is the presence of iconic B-movie director Samuel Fuller, who contributes one of his occasional acting performances; signature cigar and flyaway hair firmly in place, Fuller plays the main villain in a crime-conspiracy subplot. Alas, the actual direction of The Young Nurses was handled not by Fuller but by actor-turned-one-time-filmmaker Clint Kimbrough, who brought zero aptitude to his work behind the camera. Still, New World cranked out sexy-nurse pictures at the brisk pace of one per year, employing the same basic framework for each picture, so it’s not as if the job description for making The Young Nurses included a reasonable expectation of innovation.
          As per the norm, the picture tracks the exploits of three ladies who work at a hospital.  Statuesque brunette Joanne (Ashley Porter) bristles at restrictions placed upon RNs, getting into trouble by usurping doctors’ authority. Clothing-averse blonde Kitty (Jeane Manson) becomes involved with a spoiled blueblood after he’s injured while watching her sunbathe. And token African-American Michelle (Angela Elayne Gibbs) occupies a subplot that’s like a miniature blaxploitation flick, riding a motorcycle as she investigates drug pushers. The acting in the movie is almost uniformly terrible, the music score largely comprises grinding rhythm tracks, and the ick factor is high—at one point, crooks kidnap Michelle, drug her, and subject her to a weird orgy/gang-rape episode. The picture also approaches softcore status with the sheer number of sex scenes. And in an especially laughable moment, “empowered” Joanne takes an odd approach to soul searching by running along a beach, stripping off her clothes, and bouncing into the ocean.

The Young Nurses: LAME

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