Or maybe it should have been called The House of Whip Whores?
Young brazen hussy types are captured and despatched by the noose by a crazed couple intent on curing the world of it's sexually liberated ways. A French mademoiselle is nabbed and her friend tries to track her down amid an explosion of beige, mutton chops and plastic bonquette.
A smorgasbord of dodgy colour schemes and gaudy patterns in the London scenes offset the oppressive prison atmosphere that is magnificently conjured up.
No, not a still from Emmanuel in Kings Road
In terms of style The House of Whipcord is a cross between soft porn Super 8 and a Public information film. It features stilted delivery from the cast with the female lead, Ann Michelle sister of 'Allo 'Allo's Vicki, excelling in her woodenness. A dodgy French accent from 'Ann-Marie' is another audio highlight. The dialogue is effortlessly ridiculous in its exposition and the characters have some of the most unimaginative names of all time: the good Samaritan is called Mr Kind "kind in name and nature” and the bad guy son goes by the nom de plume Mark E Desade.
"First we will kill your vanity then the rest will follow if its own accord"
It is a melange of Genres. Sexploitation, Women in Prison, Gothic Horror, Vigilantism, Torture Porn, Conspiracy Theory and Scooby Doo type mystery. Perhaps an alternative title for this movie would have been Dolly birds in dungeons or The Glamour pusses and the gargoyles.
"Because she's French and she's a trouble maker"
We have some terrific archetypes in the blind Organ playing mad scientist/religious zealot husband and wife with a son who looks like he's auditioning to join the Walker Brothers. Crammed in is some overstated titilation; flagellation,shades of incest between mother and son, a bare buttock here a glimpse of breast there and thinly veiled Lesbian S&M.
I love House of Whipchord it is a unselfconscious piece of delightfully lurid entertainment from auteur Pete Walker, who pops up as a Cyclist dressed as that bloke from the Fisherman's Friend packet. Walker has an impressive CV of British exploitation movies that includes Frightmare, The Flesh and Blood Show, House of Long Shadows, Schizo, House of Mortal Sin and Home Before Midnight. House of Whipcord is a triumph despite of and because of its shortcomings. Its currently on rotation on The Horror Channel and I urge you to check it out