BODY COUNT


Flesh films are associated with bodies. Living, breathing, bare bodies, engaged in intercourse of the sexual kind. That is what is seen on screen, not the heap of corpses behind the curtain of eroticism. Make no mistake, they are there. The toxic cocktail of money, mob, and illicit activity has a tendency to bring out the worst in the human species.

During the decade of the 1970’s, the lethal blend of  vast profits and unharnessed greed sent many bodies to an unceremonious shallow grave; dumped like garbage in a city landfill, or just left in a ditch by the curb.  Cars riddled with bullet holes and spider-web pattern shattered glass bear witness in the newspaper photo morgues with the ghastly sight of a slaughtered person behind the wheel. Two men accounted for much of the mayhem of that decade. Neither were in the porno business for the sex, nor the fame, but purely for the money and power.

Roy DeMeo

Roy DeMeo

Roy DeMeo, a self-appointed arbiter of death over life, was the Mafia’s main go-to guy for problematic people. A total of 200 victims  were notches on his pistol butt. Aiding and abetting him were five other psychopathic members of his Gemini Crew. They took their name from a seedy bar in the flatlands of Brooklyn that served as their clubhouse. The Fountain Ave. landfill was the destination point for most of the dismembered body parts of their victims, and had they been alive today, the gang would have no doubt cashed in on the burgeoning human organ market of present. DeMeo made a fortune selling car parts, dismantled in his chop shop, from his stolen vehicles operation. It is not a stretch to assume he would have done the same with the people he murdered.

His involvement in pornography was only one of the enterprises he pursued to fill the coffers of the Mafia and gain favor clawing his way to the top of the FBI’s mob’s organizational pyramid chart. Just as Roy capitalized on grizzly body endeavors, so did he exploit the most bane of the porno market by selling “mostly sick shit.” Meeting DeMeo in person, you could not help but notice all the oxygen being sucked out of the room. Even the expensive clothes and oiled, perfumed hair, could not disguise his rancid ora of doom. He was real and only lived to his mid-forties until he received instant karma from his own men.

Roy DeMeo, despicable even by Mafia standards, was essential to the Gambinos until his indiscretions threatened the very core of their operation. When finally, after a decade of treachery, the law caught up with him, DeMeo was snuffed but not before he had implicated everyone around him all the way up to the top of the shaky ladder of the  mob. The resulting deaths of coconspirators were a direct result of DeMeo’s gestalt. Paul Castellano, top dog of the rabid pack, was annihilated, due in no small part to the caustic contrail spewed from Roy and his gang’s fiery engine. His is the story of the most debauched element of the human condition. In telling of my own involvement with Roy DeMeo, an example of how far reaching the negative force of a person can affect many others, even in the environs of a city the size of New York. The same is true of one of his cohorts, Richard Kuklinski, the Iceman.

Richard Kuklinski

“Big Richie”, as he was know to us on the street, was an associate of DeMeo, but functioned more as stepchild in Roy’s conclave of ordained  minsters of death. A wanna be hit hero, Kuklinski fabricated his body count to the willingly gullible  media, only after he was imprisoned, in an attempt to aggrandize himself and steal Roy DeMeo’s thunder. A rouge operator with ties to Roy, Big Richie held a long time grudge against DeMeo for a beating administered by the Gemini’s crew resulting from an argument in the first meeting of the two desperadoes.

I have gone to lengths to debunk the myth of the Iceman’s urban legend. Showing him for the marginal player he was and the concocted stories his false reputation is built on.

With any luck, the reader will come away with a realistic picture of a person, who spent his life trying to achieve a normalized life outwardly with family and affluent facade, while suffering internally from a lack of self-worth and bearing the scar-tissue from an abusive upbringing by a violent alcoholic father and religious zealot mother. The murders Richard did commit were cowardly exploitations of  a bate and switch scam he relied on to sucker unsuspecting victims into his lair of death with the promise of a good deal on stolen swag. Weak in sprit but strong in statue, six foot five, three hundred pound Big Richie, was a case study in deception to the outside world and no doubt to himself.

Taken separately but intertwined inexplicably, the Pole and the Italian form the bad seeds that sprout into a massive octopus  with far reaching tentacles enveloping guilty and innocent bystanders alike.

A dangerous journey through the heady years of the 1970’s when porn was profitable, illegal and a loadstone for gangsters and profiteers attracted by easy cash from 8 mm smut loops.

Probably one of the most influential sociological changes since the industrial revolution, the advent of hardcore sex films in public places, stripped away much of the quasi-moral vestiges of the ninetieth century Victorian era. It was a time when mores, morals and modesty changed inexorably. Porn was not the only sociological shift; it was happening in the arts, politics and society in general. Whether pornography was a catlist or a by-product of this change is difficult to cleave, but for certain it played a big part in challenges for first amendment rights.    

Literally at fox hole, basement level, I witness the paradigm shift from titillation to penetration in motion pictures. I paralleled the legal adjustments, while making films, and watched as the public demanded the ability to watch what they wanted. It was an important slice of American culture witnessing  implications of the past and the impact to the future. 

Available @ http://www.amazon.com/Wham-Bam-Boom-Sojourner-ebook/dp/B00ANZ1UOW/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_t_1

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~ by Larry Revene on December 19, 2012.

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