Director: Jacques Henrici
Writers: Henri Haile, Jacques Henrici, Lawrence Zeitlin
Producer: Jacques Henri
Composer: John Bath
Production Companies: Dramatis Personae/Fanfare/Tonylyn Productions Inc
Principal Cast: Arthur Howard, Eva Wagner
For more details on this title, visit the main EOFFTV site.
A painful and entirely witless nudie comedy in which the talent-free Arthur Howard (brother of Leslie) stars as scooter riding Professor Sims who embarks on a tour of Europe to answer a plea for help from physicist Professor Krapotkin southern Austria. The never-seen Krapotkin manages to blow himself up before Sims arrives, however, and leaves the product of his research - a pair of X-ray spectacles - in Sims' less than capable hands. The rest of the film merely catalogues the attempts by various spies and secret agents to get the glasses from Sims as he takes the opportunity to spy on various women (as well as paintings in art galleries!), the glasses allowing him to see them naked (in tinted footage) though not, strangely, as skeletons as one might expect. A trail of dead bodies lies in Sims' wake as he gallivants about Europe in search of... nothing and no-one in particular.
For its day, this was probably daring stuff - though naked here means a rather chaste topless - and certainly for a British film of its time, nudity of any kind was virtually unheard of. Sadly for raincoaters of the early 60s, getting to the brief moments of titillation involves sitting through interminable travelogue footage of Europe, from Bavaria's Oktoberfest to Venice via a trip to the Louvre. Whether the glimpses of exposed nipple were worth this barbaric torture is open to debate. There are few surprises along the way, though the woman with three breasts does come as a bit of a shock.
Made so cheaply it features no synchronized sound yet boasts a half dozen European locations (what was the point?), Paradisio is an utter disaster, long forgotten until it resurfaced, unwelcomed and largely unwatched, on late night TV in the UK during 1997. Henrici is either a pseudonym or his work on Paradisio so appalled his contemporaries that it prevented him from ever working again as there seems to be no record of him since. Which is perhaps for the best...
Paradisio is a curious beast - clearly it was meant as a scandalous expose of what "Johnny Foreigner" was up to across the channel, allowing homegrown dirty old men to get their jollies while tut-tutting furiously about the low morals of our European neighbours - instead, it merely exposed the hypocrisy of British sexual mores. That it was apparently 'lost' for many years is no great surprise and as a monument to the early days of the British sex film industry, it's a pretty poor example.