Lila (1968)

LILA (1968)
aka Mantis in Lace
Article 3811 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 1-10-2012
Posting Date: 1-20-2012
Directed by William Rotsler
Featuring Susan Stewart, Steve Vincent, James Brand
Country: USA
What it is: Exploitation movie disguised as psycho killer movie

A topless dancer starts taking acid and has bad trips, during which she kills and dismembers her lovers. Police investigate.

I could say the plot is threadbare, but that would be missing the point; to make the plot more elaborate would have cut in on the extensive footage of topless dancers that fills up most of the running time of the movie. I saw it coming when I saw Harry Novak’s name during the opening credits. Our psycho kills with screwdrivers and a cleaver, usually yelling things like “keep away” while she’s having a bad trip. She’s not the sharpest pin in the sewing basket, but neither are the cops that are on her case. Those who love exploitation and lots of skin will like this one best; those who enjoy snatches of hilarious dialogue will also find a use for it. Other than that, the best thing I can say about this is that it has a modicum of wit. And remember – When you’re tripping on acid, you have to say “Oh, wow!” a lot. As far as I know, the title song was not a hit, neither in the short version or the extended album version that gets a lot airplay during the movie.

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