wouldn’t you like to know

I was intrigued with the film Irina Palm, as I could not imagine Marianne Faithfull playing the part of a middle-aged frumpy woman.

Wandering around Soho in a daze having found out that more money is needed for treatment of her grandson’s illness, Maggie (Marianne Faithfull) applies to be a hostess at Sexy World. Finding out that a hostess does not not make tea and clear up, she declines the position but keeps thinking of the money that she has turned down.

Maggie reapplies for the job, and is so successful that she gets ‘penis elbow’ and earns the stage name of ‘Irina Palm’.

The underlying tension within the family and nosy neighbours in the English village where she lives means that Maggie keeps secret her new ‘profession’ much to the consternation of villagers who are accustomed to knowing everything about everyone. Even about uninteresting Maggie.

The fun begins when her ‘secret’ becomes known, and the scenes with her bitchy friends are absolutely fabulous. Resolution with family is a little more renching, but Maggie is more certain and definitely not uninteresting.

The acting seems a little wooden at times, but the change in expression in Miki (Miki Manojlovic) from a scowling club owner that breaks with a smile when with Maggie/Irina Palm is believable as it is endearing.

If you are uncomfortable sitting in a very English living or morning room having tea with your friends and neighbours talking about the subject of wanking men off, then probably this film may not be for you. Having said that, I think people like Maggie’s snooty friends and neighbours are the ones to be worried about.

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