H.O.T.S. (1979)
H.O.T.S. (1979)

Genre: Comedy Running Time: 1 hr. 38 min.

Release Date: July 20th, 1979 MPAA Rating: R

Director: Gerald Seth Sindell Actors: Susan Kiger, Lisa London, Pamela Jean Bryant, Kimberly Cameron, Mary Steelsmith, Angela Aames, Marjorie Andrade, Cece Bullard, Karen Smith, Robyn Martin, Lindsay Bloom, K.C. Winkler, Sandy Johnson, Marilyn Rubin, Danny Bonaduce

 


 

A

t Fairenville University (fondly known as “Good Ol’ F.U.”), stuck-up PI Sorority president Melody Ragmore (Lindsay Bloom) complains about the lack of worthy candidates for their latest rush. One of those rejected entries, Honey Shane (Susan Kiger), fed up at the inability to access the most popular group on campus, plots to win every man in the area – until PI Sorority resembles a convent. And she’s joined by a bevy of other rebuffed rookies, many of whom look voluptuous enough to fit into any number of sororities. After placing a newspaper ad to recruit members for her new club, called “H.O.T.S.” (which stands for Help Out The Seals, though the dean believes it stands for, nonsensically, Hold On To Sex), Honey further advertises a party to feature a feat of skill sure to impress every red-blooded college boy. Plus, they sell kisses for between $2 and $5, they brew moonshine in the attic, and they gather bets for swimming pool antics that quickly rack up cash.

The film opens with a girls’ locker room scene, featuring plenty of nudity and conversations gushing with double entendres; it’s quite obvious that exploitative components will vastly outshine storytelling concerns. Throughout, there are attempts at humor, but they never overcome the shapely female figures on display; bouncing bosoms in the background have a tendency to distract from the mediocre comedy at the forefront. So it’s no surprise that the complication of escaped bank robbers (Dick Bakalyan and Louis Guss) returning for money stashed in the very house now occupied by the H.O.T.S. has virtually no impact on the revelry (which ranges from topless skydiving to topless pie fights).

Ultimately, “H.O.T.S.” is terribly unfunny, but it’s difficult to dismiss the quantity and quality of the female nakedness. The filmmakers know exactly who their target audience is, and they don’t waste time before providing the goods – nor do they pad the plot with needless drama or tragedy. It’s little more than a series of playfully vengeful pranks that involve sexual scenarios, or sexual scenarios interrupted by playfully vengeful pranks. Perhaps the most unexpected element of this ultimate-male-fantasy design is that the script was written by two women (Cheri Caffaro and Joan Buchanan).

The film boasts car chases, hot air balloon stunts, frequent partying, mild roughhousing, light slapstick, and the use of a real bear and seal. Innumerable sequences of flaunting and teasing also occur, along with one rather unexpected attempted rape, which is oddly severe, despite efforts to tone it down with clumsiness. The only things the camera is truly intent on capturing are close-ups of alternately covered and uncovered breasts. This is most evident in the obligatory wet t-shirt contest and the climactic strip-football game.

Exposed flesh is the main star, but “H.O.T.S.” is inundated with such poorly developed characters (the lead footballer is merely called Macho Man) that none of them retain memorable names or distinguishable characteristics. Other than Honey, the various costars just blend together. It hardly matters, however; the personas and the shenanigans are utterly brainless, serving solely to transition, gawkily, from one carnal display to the next. And then it suddenly just ends.

– Mike Massie

  • 2/10