Reviews – The Stud (1978)
Joan Collins is without a doubt one of the greatest movie stars we have ever produced. She has starred in countless movies and television series, and worked with just about everyone you can possibly think of. Her golden age was the fifties and sixties, where she was churning out one movie after another at the rate of at least one or two a year. It was in the 1970s that things took a downward turn . The 70s were not at all kind to Joan, it was one “B” movie flop after another, which included the notoriously bad “Empire Of The Ants”, which i think she regarded as one of the low points of her career.
She badly need a surefire hit, and it was at this point that her sister Jackie, suggested a possible movie adaption of her racy novel from 1969, “The Stud”. She was to play the lead, Fontaine Khaled, rich wife of a wealthy Arab businessman, and owner of one of the finest nightclubs in London, “Hobo”. To play opposite her they had to find the “Stud” of the title, and they turned to television actor Oliver Tobias, who i remember mostly from the children’s drama series of the 70s, “Arthur of The Britons”. He plays Tony Blake, handsome manager of “Hobo”, employed by Fontaine to not only run the club, but also to satisfy her sexual demands.
The movie was widely thought of as a British alternative to Saturday Night Fever. I’m not sure about that, but one things for sure, “The Stud”, and it’s sequel “The Bitch” definetely revitalised Joan’s flagging career, and also helped to bring her to the attention of Aaron Spelling and Esther Shapiro, producers of the upcoming super soap Dynasty in 1981. However at the opposite end of the spectrum, Oliver Tobias, later claimed his role in the film led to typecasting, and ultimately killed his career.
One critic called this “An “X” rated slice of disco era smut”.. That’s about right actually. If your looking for quality cinema and loads of deep meaningfuls then jog on. This is cheesy, sleazy trash, based in London, and set to a dated disco soundtrack, featuring the likes of Leo Sayer, Hot chocolate, Roxy Music and The Real Thing, who also perform the track “Let’s Go Disco” live in the club.
I have to admit to “The Stud” being one of my guilty pleasures. My memories of this movie stretch back to the introduction of video cassette recorders in the late 70s. A colleague of mine bought one of the very first video recorders on the Video 2000 format. The cassettes were the size of house bricks, they were huge. One of the first tapes he bought was “The Stud”. It cost him a small fortune, but he was always one for having the latest technology before anyone else, and this was no exception. Just the thought of being able to watch a movie, that was still on general release at cinema’s, at home was amazing. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the movie for the first time, and this set me off on my journey to owning my own VCR, which i did a couple of years later, when Ferguson released the Videostar on the VHS format. Not surprisingly one of my first rentals was “The Stud”, followed closely by it’s sequel “The Bitch”. Both became firm favourites of mine and still remain so.
ASs i’ve already said this movie is far from perfect, but personally i love it. Joan Collins and Oliver Tobias are superb in the lead roles, and they are ably suported by a cast which includes Sue Lloyd, who was already famous for having appeared in the Midlands soap Crossroads. “The Stud” is a great Britsleaze movie, but is also great fun. Combine that with the amazing 70s disco soundtrack, and you have a nice little window into the glitzy world of the 1970s. Highly recommended.