FARMER’S DAUGHTERS: De Sade In The Barnyard

In the ’70s, adult filmmaking was enjoying its “wild west” phase, particularly for those working in this trade on the East Coast. The NYC-based practitioners were the wildest of the wild and Zebedy Colt fit comfortably into this group. He was best known to adult film addicts for giving wild performances in shockers like Sex Wish and Waterpower. He also directed adult films, with Farmer’s Daughters being one of his most infamous directing credits. The title might make it sound like a bit of downhome erotica but don’t be fooled: this action-FarmDau-dvdpacked quickie is every bit as shocking as his famous performances.

Farmer’s Daughters starts like standard “country girls” fantasy fare with a trio of nubile, sexually curious daughters (including Susan McBain and Marlene Willoughby) spying on ma (Gloria Leonard) and pa (Colt himself) having a morning roll-in-the-hay. However, things get weird when farmhand Fred (Bill Cort) spoils their fun and they take revenge by overpowering him, seducing him and then punishing him via whipping and watersports. Things move into home invasion territory when a trio of convicts (led by Spalding Gray!) sneaks up on the household and ushers them onto the front lawn for some fun and games. That’s rough enough but a third act surprise pushes things to a place of Sadean darkness…

The end result lives up to the legend of adult cinema’s wild days. Colt treats his film more like a grindhouse survival-horror film rather than erotica. The sex itself is perfunctory and unflatteringly filmed in that ’70s way, complete with ugly, surgery-style closeups. However, Colt excels at exploiting all the potential nastiness in his scenario – he packs the hour-long running time with sexual assaults, bodily fluids, incest, bondage, etc. He even throws in a wild coda that intercuts the film’s final moments with an experimental film-style montage of the debauchery that preceded it.

Thus, Farmer’s Daughters feels like adult cinema’s answer to Last House On The Left. Colt takes joy in transforming typical adult filmmaking fantasy setups into grim nightmares – and the result is grindhouse fare at its kinkiest and meanest.

DVD Notes: Impulse Picture just released a new DVD of this title, taken from genuine film elements. The results maintain the grainy, cheaply-shot look of the film but its much more colorful and detailed than past tape-derived transfers of this title. It’s also fully uncut, which is a rarity for this film. Bonus material consists of a trio of loops thrown in to promote Impulse’s 42nd Street Forever: The Peep Show Collection series.

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