The Amazing Mary Millington

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The Amazing Mary Millington

The Amazing Mary Millington

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You don't really hear the word much 'sexploitation' anymore, but it's just a by-product of 'exploitation' - films predominantly made in the 1960s and 1970s that exploited a certain element of storytelling to engage the cinemagoers' attention. At the time, British filmmakers needed to offer the public something they couldn't see on TV - and this tended to be material which wasn't allowed on the small screen - namely violence, horror, martial arts and sex. In the 1970s British films were a lot tamer than European fare. Hardcore porn movies played mainstream cinemas on the continent, whereas in the UK it was a slightly different story. McGillivray, David (2017). Doing rude things: the history of the British sex film, 1957-1981 (2nded.). Wolfbait. ISBN 978-1999744151. Respectable: The Mary Millington Story ( 2015), an in-depth documentary chronicling her extraordinary life Millington has been described as one of the "two hottest British sex film stars of the seventies", the other being Fiona Richmond. [3] David Sullivan described her as "the only really uninhibited, natural sex symbol that Britain ever produced and who believed in what she did". [22] Between 1975 and 1982, there was always at least one of Millington's films playing in London's West End. [23] Babington, Bruce (2001). British Stars and Stardom: From Alma Taylor to Sean Connery. Manchester University Press. ISBN 9780719058417.

Babington, Bruce (2001). British Stars and Stardom: From Alma Taylor to Sean Connery. Manchester University Press. p.205. ISBN 9780719058417. Things take a dramatic upswing quality-wise in the second film in this collection, 1978’s The Playbirds, which sees Millington receiving a larger slice of the action here. Never the world’s greatest actress, Mary is perfectly cast as the prim and proper policewoman who goes at it with both barrels when chosen to go undercover as a newbie model as part of a police investigation into a series of murders of glamour models, with the prime suspect being self-styled stud and hardman Harry Dougan, played by Alan Lake. It’s notable that the more layers of clothes Mary sheds, the more comfortable she appears before the camera , appropriate for her skill set. Millington was a member of the National Campaign for the Reform of the Obscene Publications Acts (NCROPA) [19] [20] and encouraged her readers to demand the abolition of the Acts. [12] After her death, NCROPA founder David Webb wrote: "Mary was a dear, kind person and we much admired her courage in standing up to the bigotry and repression which still so pervades the establishment of this country. She obviously had tremendous pressures put on her as a result and there is no doubt in my mind that these must have contributed to this tragedy." [21]With the aggressive marketing and publicity skills of Playmates’ proprietor David Sullivan, Millington became a household name, principally through a trilogy of low-budget British films whose audience exceeded that of the ‘dirty mac brigade’ of Soho’s square mile; and it’s these films (restored in all their grubby-turned-pinsharp ‘70s glory) alongside a bountiful bevy of posthumous productions and specially-made bonus documentaries that comprise Screenbound’s gorgeous box set The Mary Millington Movie Collection, curated by Mary’s biographer Simon Sheridan. Respectable: The Mary Millington Story". Regent Street Cinema. Archived from the original on 16 April 2016 . Retrieved 3 April 2016. If that sounds tonally all over the shop, The Playbirds just about holds it together through sheer chutzpah. Imagine, if you will, The Sweeney as directed by Pete Walker or Derek Ford, with just a tang of giallo as detective Gavin Campbell (Yes, that’s right – one of ‘Esther’s boys’ from That’s Life) races in hot pursuit of the mystery assailant, not to mention the film’s downbeat ending. David Sullivan's magazines were often undated, as such the only way of dating them is by which Sullivan-produced films were being promoted inside the magazines, i.e. a Sullivan magazine which promotes Come Play With Me would be from 1976/1977, ones promoting The Playbirds would be circa 1978, and ones promoting Confessions from the David Galaxy Affair would be from 1979. See also [ edit ]

Mary Ruth Maxted (née Quilter; [1] [2] 30 November 1945– 19 August 1979), known professionally as Mary Millington from 1974 onwards, was an English model and pornographic actress. Her appearance in the short softcore film Sex is My Business led to her meeting with magazine publisher David Sullivan, who promoted her widely as a model and featured her in the softcore comedy Come Play With Me, which ran for a record-breaking four years at the same cinema. As a new Blu-ray box set collating her films is released, its curator and her biographer, Simon Sheridan, explains all about Mary Millington, a pioneering personality of the 1970s. Millington was buried at St Mary Magdalene Church, in South Holmwood, Surrey, marked by a grey granite tombstone which bears her married name. She is buried in the same grave as her mother, Joan Quilter, who died in 1976. [20] Legacy [ edit ] Screenbound Pictures: Come Play With Me and The Playbirds Restoration Comparison". 1 April 2020 . Retrieved 13 October 2020.Adding extra VAM are Sheridan’s new documentaries, produced specially for this box set, offering a diverse range of fresh new insights into the Mary Millington success story. Harrison Marks’ daughter Josie offers some frank and funny recollections about the Come Play With Me svengali and there’s a surprisingly touching and affecting tribute documentary devoted to Harry Knights, Millington’s ghost-writer for her horny escapades in Whitehouse and Playmates. On a lighter note, photographer George Richardson recalls snapping the iconic photo of Mary outside 10 Downing Street and actress Sally Faulkner ( Doctor Who, Prey, Vampyres, I’m Not Feeling Myself Tonight) is hilariously candid and insightful on her involvement in the British film industry during the sexploitation era. A highlight of the special features in this set is Mary Millington On Location, a time travel capsule which takes the viewer on a ‘then and now’ tour of significant locations in Mary’s life and career, classily narrated by Judy Matheson ( Lust For A Vampire, The Flesh & Blood Show). There’s also the option of commentaries with Sue Longhurst, David Sullivan, Willy Roe and more. a b Sweet, Matthew (24 November 2000). "No sex please; we're bored". The Guardian . Retrieved 8 September 2017. Upton, Julian (2004). Fallen stars: tragic lives and lost careers. Headpress/Critical Vision. ISBN 9781900486385. No such caveats for the last major feature film in this collection, Confessions Of The David Galaxy Affair. In The Playbirds it’s fair to say that Alan Lake’s charisma was put to great use, and he visibly relishes every scene he appears in, with charming brio; by comparison, Confessions Of The David Galaxy Affair is what happens when you give your lead actor free rein for all his most appalling excesses – problematic ain’t the word for some of ‘em – and Millington’s character barely troubles the narrative. A sad, depressing film, released two months prior to Millington’s suicide, and Lake’s last lead role before his tragic death by his own hand in 1984, Confessions Of The David Galaxy Affair is the twitching corpse of the British sex comedy at a time when its star had fallen, Columbia having pulled the plug on the Confessions series a year earlier. One wonders if the cunning stunts of Michael Armstrong or David McGillivray could have salvaged this turkey, but it’s doubtful. It’s sad to see the potential of The Playbirds squandered in this embarrassing dud – even Lake’s missus, the wonderful Diana Dors, phones it in.

Mary on Location – Then and Now’ travelogue revisiting the main locations in Mary’s life and films. Written, directed and produced by Mary Millington's biographer Simon Sheridan, the film mixes archive footage, previously unseen photographs and interviews with Millington's family, friends and co-stars, including David Sullivan, Pat Astley, Dudley Sutton, Linzi Drew and Flanagan. Come Play With Me opens this box set, and it’s a curio inasmuch as although it’s the film whose title is associated with Millington in the public mindset, thanks to Sullivan’s publicity blitzkrieg – the sex thimble barely appears in the film compared to the screen time devoted to her pulchritudinous co-stars such as Sue Longhurst, Suzy Mandel, Nicola Austine, Suzette Sangalo Bond and the striking Sonia Svenburger.


Sheridan, Simon (1999). Come Play with Me: The Life and Films of Mary Millington. FAB Press. ISBN 9780952926078.

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