1974's Blow Hard is a supposed documentary that purports to "glimpse inside the emerging sexual volcano that was about to explode across America in the early '70s ... swing parties, orgies, young couples getting it on for the first time, bored spouses seeking easy action on the side, the promiscuity of girl on girl interactions." There are no credits given for the film but eagle eyed viewers will spot seventies smut legends Jamie Gillis, Tina Russell and Valerie Mason all popping up in the movie as it plays out.
When the movie begins, a dude with shaggy sideburns and a skinny hippy chick are frolicking in a field when the film cuts to another dude with shaggy sideburns standing in a mod apartment with a mic in his hand. He tells us about how men have chased women through the ages and that the belief that views on sex has changed is 'all in the mind.' From there he tells us that this film is going to discuss sex in the modern age and that it's going to discuss swinging.
Our first vignette takes us to a college where we see a 'youth dating one of the local girls.' They hit a party and everyone dances while the narrator tells us about gonorrhea. This cuts to a segment about wife swapping where we see Tina Russell give head to a faceless gent. We cut to a bunch of other people getting it on, one couple in what looks to be a closet. The guy sucks her tits and then sticks it in her and blows his load on her pelvis. The narrator spouts more facts at us as we watch two couples go at it on the floor of what looks like your grandmother's living room. One of the guys is Jamie Gillis and he's sporting a classy blue shirt.
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With that out of the way we're back on the whole college kick. We move to a dorm room where a guy and a girl hit the bed. It takes them an unusually long time to get their clothes off but once that problem is taken care of, they go at it and she sucks him off until he finishes. Then for some reason we go to a store room where another couple are fooling around. Pants come off, cocks are sucked, and a bizarre strain of piano music plays very loudly on the soundtrack. He returns the oral favors and then mounts her to pump away until it's time to unload. Once that awkward coupling is finished we see a brunette with big hair laying in her room fingering herself. A man comes into the room and we learn from the narrator that these are adulterers and that this man has been cheating on his wife and she doesn't want him because of that. He takes her anyway, she was fingering herself, and he starts to laying some love down on her boobies. After the oral action heads south they go at it a bit.
This somehow segues into a bit about more college students. Those rascally kids are smoking a bunch of pot and this causes them to have a crazy orgy in someone's basement. From there we get some interviews with two crazy swinging ladies who talk nonsensically about various sexual predicaments and about the gratification and satisfaction that comes from the lifestyle. Cut to another orgy where a pair of couples is fooling around while the narrator tells us about the impact of psychology on marital sexual relations. Gillis has still got his blue shirt on and someone is riding him. One of the girls has some face paint on and we get a bit of slow motion lesbian licking here before cutting back to the orgy already in progress. This orgy goes on and on and then a girl in an orange dress makes a phone call... and then they orgy more.
From here we get an interview with Dr. Franklin D. Cannon, a supposed expert on homosexuality, who talks about how homosexuality has changed in terms of visibility over the years. From there we see a gay beauty contest in which a bunch of beefcake dudes parade around on stage as the interview tells us about what it's like for gay men to live together and about the social stigmas that surround the gay lifestyle. As the conversation continues we see a pair of hot lesbians go at it in a kitchen. To bring the movie full circle we cut to the shaggy sideburned guy and his skinny hippy chick from the opening scene fooling around in a car before our intrepid narrator closes out the film by summing it all up.
This fullframe transfer, which appears to present the film in its original aspect ratio, looks surprisingly sharp and colorful even if it is interlaced. The picture quality, for an old XXX film from 1975, looks surprisingly good. There are some specks here and there as well as a moderate amount of grain but this looks to be a film sourced transfer and not a VHS or tape source. The black levels stay strong, the skin tones look natural, and while there are a few scenes that look a bit on the soft side, overall this is a nice picture.
The Dolby Digital Mono soundtrack is a little muffled and not of the best quality, but again, it's taken from an older source so the limitations of the era's technology are going to be there when that's the case. Dialogue is pretty easy to understand, however, and the background music comes through reasonably clear. There aren't a lot of sound effects used in the film, mostly just some random moaning and groaning during the action scenes and these are handled just fine, as are the talkier bits of the movie.
Aside from some tacky animated menus, VCX has included three bonus scenes, the first of which is from Sex Wish (6:25) and it's more or less a lot of old inner city NYC footage before showing us a quick clip of Zebedy Colt getting his rape on. The second clip is from Practice Makes Perfect (5:26) and it features a cute blonde farm girl giving head to the farmhand in her bedroom before they lay on their sides for some spoon fucking. The third clip is from Sweet Throat (6:35) and in it a lithe brunette gives the phone repairman a blowjob until he spurts. Last but not least, we've got a clip from a French import called Two At Once (9:19) in which a suave looking dude fucks an incredibly foxy Brigitte Lahiae in his car out in the woods.
Rounding out the extras are trailers for Pleasure Palace, The Second Coming Of Eva, Sweet Throat and Flesh Fever, the Legendary Tribute montage of vintage adult movie clips as well as some animated menus, scene selection and a web-link.
As a documentary, Blow Hard is terrible and as a work of erotic filmmaking, well, it's still kind of terrible. That said, there's a lot of curiosity value here and the film is pretty interesting from a historical perspective. VCX's transfer is decent and the movie is definitely worth checking out for fans of the golden age that don't necessarily need to take things all that seriously. The narration and interview clips that may have seemed intelligent at the time now come across as hammy and unintentionally hilarious. Consider this oddball release recommended if it sounds like you'd enjoy it. I know I did.