5.8/10
6
1 user 4 critic

A Time to Love (1971)

Two college buddies, womanizing Ned, the host of a hit TV show called "Man of the World", and John, a family man and accounting exec at an ad company, meet for the first time in years and compare their lives.

Director:

Harold Kovner

Writers:

Harold Kovner (screenplay), Jay Campbell (screenplay)
Reviews
Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
Howard Blakey Howard Blakey ... Ned Bangor
Harry Reems ... Jon (as Herb Stryker)
Edit

Storyline

Two college buddies, womanizing Ned, the host of a hit TV show called "Man of the World", and John, a family man and accounting exec at an ad company, meet for the first time in years and compare their lives.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Adult films come of age as the screen explodes with a new, explicit daring! See more »

Genres:

Adult | Romance

Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 November 1974 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Det vilda porrgänget See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

References Little Women (1949) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Eye-opening "real movie" from porn's early days
15 July 2011 | by lor_See all my reviews

Before porn films became routine and perfunctory assemblages of same-old shots & positions, there was interesting experimentation afoot, best exemplified by the excellent but forgotten A TIME TO LOVE. Filmmakers Harold Kovner and Jay Campbell were on to something but, alas, porn soon took another boring route instead.

I've been watching a lot of prehistoric porn lately, including loops of course, but mainly 1970/71 features, when big-screen XXX was in its infancy. The 1-day wonders can usually be identified by their abbreviated running times (generally under 1 hour), while an ambitious project clocks in closer to real feature length, 83 minutes for this one.

The actors do not ad lib, but follow a real script for a change, telling the story of college buddies on the football field reuniting 10 years after graduation to compare lifestyles and reminisce.

Ned Bangor (well-played by Howard Blakey, presumably a stage actor given his few film or TV credits) has become a celebrity TV news journalist, host of the UBS series "Man of the World". His buddy John (Harry Reems, sans mustache) is an account executive at an advertising firm specializing in TV commercial campaigns.

The dichotomy is that Ned is a confirmed bachelor, boasting of his globe-hopping sexual conquests, which we see in a series of well-staged flashbacks. John, on the other hand, is happily married to Margo (gorgeous Tina Russell, the film's star even though only appearing in limited scenes near the end) with two kids. The kids' roles are surprisingly well-acted and strictly heartwarming, hardly typical of XXX. Film's title theme of "everybody needs love" is clearly pretty sappy for a porn audience, but sincerely expressed here, without any hint of sarcasm or satire.

Indie production is clearly low-budget but feels like an epic compared to contemporaneous porn. That's because the filmmakers make excellent use of (obvious) stock footage, keep the story moving, and while sex takes place on cheap sets there are enough exterior scenes to avoid the dreaded claustrophobia of the genre. Even such niceties (usually missing) of the cast showcasing clean feet throughout add to the professionalism, as does well-recorded direct sound dialog.

A long cast roster of actresses gives the porn fan variety, though perhaps the film failed with its target patrons (and exhibitors) by lacking the vast quantities of XXX footage soon to become de rigeur post DEEP THROAT's success. It plays relentlessly just like a real film, with relatively short hardcore scenes integrated into the action.

Overall it's an entertaining and even thoughtful treatment of the choices people make as they mature, thousands of miles from the simple-minded "sex is all" message of porn. Two sequences detract, however, from the overall effect.

One misjudged segment has Blakey boasting of his conquests around the world on assignment. With library music lifted from the Findlays' 60s softcore epics, we are treated in short order to stock footage of Paris, London, Rome, Berlin and even Mao's China. Quickie montages show Blakey humping a beauty in every port, and director Kovner goes way overboard by including party footage from the archive of Twiggy, George Harrison and John Lennon in late '60s regalia! This elaborate section of the film doesn't work at all.

Worse yet is a WTF? final reel sequence showing a segment of Blakey's TV show. He's on a soapbox, railing against our consumer society, manipulative advertising that gets us to buy planned-obsolescence products and other holier-than-thou pronouncements which I agree with 100% some 40 years later, but which come off preachy and counter-productive (whether this was a real or porn film makes no difference). The auteur's plea for conservation, preserving the environment and moving away from America's traditional worship of "competition" is laudable but laughable, as we watch over five minutes of stock footage including another archive cameo featuring, who else but Ralph Nader.

Finale has Tina and Reems fixing Blakey up with her beautiful (natch) sister Lorraine (unidentified actress in a non-sex role) for a happy ending.

This all plays better than it sounds, and Tina Russell is styled and made up to look the most beautiful of her career. Her loving sex scene with hubby Reems is indeed worth the price of admission. Earlier Reems has a flashback depicting when he "almost cheated on" his wife, with a tall & beautiful patrician woman (Tallie Cochran) picked up in a bar. The script's perhaps Clintonian stretch here has Reems getting a blob and reciprocating with cunnilingus with Tallie, but just as he mounts her he thinks of wifey and splits. So just as Monica Lewinsky was to learn two decades later, in 1971 porn oral sex doesn't count!

Given the uplifting and strictly positive message of the project, Kovner omits cum shots entirely, rightly reckoning that they would destroy the carefully built up point of the sex scenes.

On the other hand, it is just that sign of integrity which perhaps doomed A TIME TO LOVE to obscurity, and meant an early end to Kovner & Campbell's XXX careers. Forty years of hindsight proves that while experimental (READ: pretentious) porn is still of interest, the world of gonzo, wall-to-wall sex or idiotic stabs at "comedy" (XXX satire junk) has fully dominated the business. There is certainly no room for a heartfelt, even sentimental offering like this.

Another sign of ambition is a full-fledged musical score, including folk ballads (like "Love Is the Thing" which bookends the picture) and satirical songs, credited to John Braden. Film's 1971 milieu is cemented by NYC theater marquees displayed on screen, including the Paris Theatre showing Lewis Gilbert's romantic hit FRIENDS (famed for its Elton John score), Robert Kaylor's DERBY, Don Siegel's THE BEGUILED (paired on a 42nd St. double bill with a reissue of Bryan Forbes' DEADFALL). I loved all these films back in first run, and wish that I had been privileged to see A TIME TO LOVE theatrically in 1971 too.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See one user review »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed