One of the best things to come out of a wave of copy cat James Bond-esque spy films are the saucy girls. However, kitsch value is also a high plus point, as is a story involving the strange mannerisms of a megalomaniac. So you will be pleased to know that Hammerhead excels well in these’s genres. So without further ado lets crack on and see what’s to found in this here film…
Tagline – Charles Hood and his dishy British bird track down a criminal mastermind. A story that hurls you from London to Lisbon….. From orgy of violence to climax of excitement!
Brooklyn Italian Vince Edwards is Charles Hood, a secret agent with British Intelligence. He’s a spy extraordinaire, amateur boxer, an expert marksman and of course, a lady lover. These skills will help with his adventure, however for this case MI-6 need his renown art connoisseur knowledge. For Charles Hood mission, if he chooses to accept it, is to meet with the notorious, mysterious gangster Hammerhead (Peter Vaughan). An evil criminal mastermind and famed art lover with a perversion for phonographic* art. Well nothing too crazy, booby art by the masters, Gauguin, Rodin, Renoir, Rubens etc.
Hammerhead – “There’s something intrinsically honest about pornography. The more perverse, the more honest it becomes.“
The collecting of valuable erotic art isn’t all what’s on our evil kinky germophobes mind. No Hammerhead is, like all power crazy madmen, determined to take over the world. With a complicated series of events put into place involving a master of disguise and a double cross mission to steal top secret NATO nuclear defence plans. BUT really is anyone really here for any of that absurd nonsensical claptrap when dancing girls and hammond organ party jazz are freaking out?
So away with the story. Here is a selection of crazy stuff you can just sit back and enjoy. Really! ask yourself, are you ready for this? Ok then you asked for it. It’s an almighty trip fest. Hippy freak-outs, psychedelic food fights, accordion playing nude ladies. A sexy hippy in a giant hot dog! Mannequin assassinations. Coffin box innuendos! Torture. A traveling wardrobe. Tons more blooming, dancing, singing hippies. One in a giant bird cage. Oh really the list could go on and on. So to sum things up……..
Here’s Vince Edwards eating a salami sandwich whilst being grind on by an incredibly beautiful lady called Ivory (Beverly Adams) getting drunk in a pink fluffy bra freaking out to organ jazz. “How do you like my prayer dance?” “Baby you got the answer to empty church’s”
Everywhere Charles Hood goes, a cheeky little blond with a giant smile follows him about. Sue Trenton (Judy Geeson) is a ticking time bomb of feisty bubbles and sauce. She loves to party and even does a mean dubbed club singing jam right in the middle of the madam with the cleavage, busty blonde bombshell Kit (Diana Dors) nightclub.
Can Charles Hood save the day and the world? I’m sure he can with his special skills that include his big Italian smile, karate chopping, the ability to climb cliffs and houses and best of all…. peering round doors listening to whole conversations without being seen, even though he’s right in front of them! Proper mad skills.
A Few Thing I Learnt Along The Way
- Hammerhead is directed by David Miller and without me realising it I have just noticed I’ve done posts of some of his films before. Like the excellent thriller with Doris Day called Midnight Lace and the JFK conspiracy drama Executive Action featuring old boys Burt Lancaster and Robert Ryan.
- Vince Edwards had been a new discovery for me when I got to see him in Stanley Kubrick’s superb 1956 crime noir The Killing. Then I loved his hit-man portrayal in the quirky and stylized Murder by Contract with I reviewed. Unbeknownst to me until this moment is the fact I’d actually seen him in my youth on VHS! In the classic science fiction masterpiece, yep 1983s Space Raiders!
- The film is based on a novel by Stephen Coulter who wrote under the name James Mayo. He was actually friends with James Bond creator Ian Fleming having both served with Royal Navy Intelligence during World War II. Having started writing spy and adventure thrillers in the early 50s it wasn’t until 1964 that his character Charles Hood would get the first of five stories. Hammerhead (1964) Let Sleeping Girls Lie (1965) Shamelady (1966) Once In A Lifetime (1968) and The Man Above Suspicion (1969). Only Hammerhead was made into a film though another of his novels, Embassy (1969) was produced starring Shaft actor Richard Roundtree in 1972.
- Little did I know that I actually own a Charles Hood novel. Here’s me getting stuck into Let Sleeping Girls Lie that I had picked up in my youth as I loved the artwork.
- Super saucy Beverly Adams the dancing salami girl was moonlighting from the Dean Martin secret agent Matt Helm films where she plays Lovey Kravezit.
- Judy Geeson was only recently a regular on my TV screen as I’d just picked up the boxset and watched all of the sublime bomb disposal WW2 drama Danger UXB
- Peter Vaughan is a legend of TV and films. One of my favorite memories of him is fierce and cute Winston the Ogre in Time Bandits. His last role before he passed away at the grand age of 93 was as Maester Aemon on Game Of Thrones.
Ok it’s not the best Bond-esque film in the world but it sits very nicely next to James Coburn’s spy spoof Our Man Flint (1967). Or stick it on a double bill with Casino Royale (1967) or if you fancy even more naughty girls then you gotta check my Deadlier Than the Male post. Hubba hubba.
Keep it filmy and keep having fun at the movies. Thanks for popping on by to see what the hairy one has been up too. Feel free to post and have fun.. Mikey Wolf
*PS Haha I hadn’t realised I had spelt phonographic wrong! Least it shows I haven’t a dirty mind. I’ve kept it in so to keep the gag in the comments in tacked. 🙂