Hot Rackets

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Hot Rackets
Hot Rackets
Director:Gary Graver
Writer:Milt Morton, Sam Norvell
Music:Oliver Edmonds
Cinematography:Murray Stone
Editing:J. Frederick Davison
Studio:Cal Vista Video
Runtime:81 mins.
Series:Not In Any Series
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Hot Rackets is a 1980 pornographic film distributed by Cal Vista International Pictures, starring Candida Royalle, Laurien Dominique, Desiree Cousteau, Rhonda Jo Petty, Chris Cassidy, Jon Martin, and Turk Lyon. Captured on excellent quality film stock, the film was re-released on DVD by Arrow Productions in 2000.

Plot Summary

Herb & Liz Adler are a well-off couple living in the San Francisco bay area. However, Herb (Jon Martin) is unable to get Liz (Candida Royalle) interested in sex, despite his best attempts. While he gets some relief from the maid, Sally (Chris Cassidy), Herb leaves home and heads straight off to his tennis club.

Liz contacts Mona Simms (Rhonda Jo Petty), who is getting her pussy shaved by husband Bill, who is a member of the same tennis club as Herb. Liz asks Mona why Herb is obsessed with going to the tennis club every morning, to which Mona replies that she used to think the same thing until she saw what goes on at the club. Liz decides to find out what goes on for herself, and accepts an invitation to the Simms house for a party on the weekend. Upon ending the phone call, Bill enjoys some boffing with the freshly-shaven Mona.

Meanwhile, Liz laments that when she married Herb, that she wasn't all that into sex, and it was all about love, but to sleep around on her is a pretty rotten thing to do. Looking at Herb's portrait, she declares "well, who needs you anyway !", and starts playing with her pussy, until she is interrupted by her butler, Carl (Herb Lyon). Asking if he would "like her to pull it out", Liz is momentarily confused, but Carl points out "the car" to the still-smarting Liz, who declares "yes, I'll be going out soon", and leaves the room.

Strengths & Weaknesses

Written at a time where any leisurely activity seemed a great excuse to make a themed porno film, the writers nontheless managed to create a great example of golden-era stag. Indeed, despite it's rather good cast, decent budget, great use of quality film stock, excellent location shooting, and enjoyable scenes, Hot Rackets appears to be a largely forgotten film.

Intended to be light & comical entertainment, the film is a far cry from the somewhat torrid contemporary films in production today. Plot based, the film portrays carefree sex, focusing largely on swinging couples. It also has a hint of comedy, notably the scenes where genitalia gratuitously drops out of costumes on the tennis courts, and Liz's fantasy that has Larry's penis wearing a pair of shades & smoking a cigarette. The location shooting is of particular praise - very few adult movies exclusively shot scenes at a tennis club, or had a seaplane involved in the production !

The lovely Candida Royalle, arguably one of the most underrated performers of her day, is certainly the star of the movie, and the standout performer. Her portrayal as the monogamous wife who converts more and more to being a swinger as the film goes on is very convincing. Adept at playing dramatic roles with some aplomb (she even parachuted into the final scene with her on-screen husband), Royalle also turns it on in her on-screen scenes, the pick of which are the two scenes shared with Laurien Dominique, and actress who she had partnered with in several other roles (Notably in films such as Hot & Saucy Pizza Girls, and Hard Soap Hard Soap). Sadly, the writers didn't seem to think it warranted that she should indulge with Turk Lyon (in the scene where the butler walks in on Liz masturbating), when the abrupt & dismissive way in which Liz regularly brushes off Carl. It likely would have made an interesting tryst to have Liz and Carl hook up at some point in the film, although admittedly it would have made more sense later in the film when Liz experiences her sexual awakening. Liz's two masturbation scenes, and her mirror fantasy of her blowing Larry are also noteworthy.

Desiree Cousteau appears once again in a ditzy role as Googie, first nailing Mike Ranger in a jacuzzi while Jon Martin watches, then straight-hopping to Jon Martin, then appearing in a key non-sex scene where Herb learns that Liz is hanging out at the tennis club, and using the opportunity to hit Herb up for taxi money (first getting a meazly $5, then getting a more generous $100 !).

The late Laurien Dominique, who sadly passed away just six years later at just 29 years old from cancer, is stellar as masseuse Kelly, the consumate club swinger. Her first scene, where Liz walks in on Kelly blowing & whacking off Guy, then having a lesbian tryst (using her pert ass to obscure Liz from Herb when he walks in on them), is one of the great scenes of the film, only perhaps rivalled by the Liz-Kelly-Bill threesome later in the film.




In the opening seconds of the film before the camera pans to Liz & Herb in bed in the morning, the radio reporter's headlines include: Eleven Dead On Freeway Mishap....Red China in corporate complex deal, deviled all corporate shares of AT & T....Informed goverment sources say trace of meat have been found in McDonald's hamburgers....Skid Roll Slasher shoots the Hillside Strangler....Patty Hearst gets life imprisonment....John Mitchell swears vendetta against Nixon....Two dwarfs (sic) injured in freak accident....Eight Southern states vote slavery constitutional....and tennis fever sweeping the country

The closing credits feature the declaration "Filmed With Panasex Equipment".