Mary Millington's True Blue Confessions



IMDb Rating 4.5 10 26

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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Pedro_H 3 / 10

Tawdry and heartless cash-in on the suicide of Mary Millington.

The life and early death of Mary Millington remains one of the saddest episodes of British cinema history. A woman whose sexual honesty and openness was abused by business men who viewed her as little more than a cash cow.

This "tribute" has to be watched with open mouth as producer Sullivan uses it to make a quick killing and preach his own self-serving propaganda over someone else's grave. Sex, death and politics don't really go side-by-side. We even have Marie Harper pretending to be Millington in her coffin!

Strangely the MM story is an interesting one with rumours (let us be respectful of the dead) of cocaine running, high ranking prostitution, tax avoidance and hardcore pornography peddling (very illegal in the UK at the time.) There was even a C4 documentary 20 years after her death which uses some of the footage.

Those wanting a sex film will be disappointed. Those that want to know more about the private life of MM will be disappointed (they don't even tell us she was married). Those that enjoy pornographers whining about their experiences and how they are shinning knights who operate at the cutting edge of media freedom will enjoy it though...

Reviewed by jaibo 3 / 10

Porn martyr exploited by pornographers

Where to begin in getting one's head round this little number? Shortly after the death of Mary Millington, Britain's best known glamour model and sex film actress, her co-star, acting coach and so-called "friend" John M East put together this curious and rather distasteful cash-in on her fame and demise. It mixes old film clips, newly filmed softcore sequences purporting to portray photo-shoots and swinging parties (to give us a glimpse into Mary's world), some staged sequences with punters inside sex shops and a porn club cinema, interviews with pornographers who knew Mary and some intriguing footage taken inside the gay nightclub Heaven, which had just opened in London. What the latter is going in the film, god only knows - the structure seems more like a freewheeling ramble about whatever comes into East's mind than a coherent look at Millington's life. To detract even further from its claims to be a serious tribute, most of the footage is cut to some of the craziest and tackiest electronic music ever composed.

East also narrates the film, and this narration is a rather sleazy mix of biographical gossip, salacious lingering over prurient details, poorly expressed editorialising and even poorer "humour." Little can be said in the film's defence, except that it is a curiously compelling, grisly epitaph to an interesting, sociologically important as well as deeply sad life and death. The most intense sequence has a voice-alike reading Mary's suicide note, and it is sobering in a 2008 England in which hardcore porn is widely available to hear of someone driven to destruction by the country's then puritanical laws (Mary herself mentions the common market at one point, and it was the general availability of porn in mainland Europe as well as the internet which made Britain's laws impossible to enforce by the early 21st Century).

The pornographers who in this film cravenly use Mary's death as a means to aggrandise their own trade and make themselves share in the glory of her martyrdom for freedom don't come out of the exercise very well; neither does East, who doesn't stop for a moment to explore why Millington didn't have people around her who were friends enough to pull her through her darkest night.

Not anything to do with good cinema, but worth catching as an addendum to any understanding of where Britain and its film industry was, sexually and socially and morally, by the early 1980s.

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