Mondo Trasho, Soho
Let’s play a game of word association. We’ll say and a word and then you say the first thing that comes to mind, ok?
If that first word isn’t ‘sex’ then we can only assume you’re better people than we are. Soho has been identified with sex and the sex industry for over 200 years and during the 1960s it was widely known as ‘the sex shop capital’ of London. In 1962, an underground Italian film called ‘Mondo Cane’, a series of newsreel-style reports featuring ‘unusual’ human behaviour was released in the UK. After realising how much business it was generating, ‘adult’ cinema owners, Michael Klinger and Tony Tenser decided to produce their own version set in the drinking dens of Soho.
‘Be shocked by the evils that lurk in its shadows’
’London In The Raw’ presented itself as both a serious-minded and educational documentary in an attempt to skirt the strict rules governing erotic content at the time, but its tone was just as fabulously salacious and depraved as the world it portrayed.
Director Arnold L. Miller, with a tiny budget of 10K, captured a rarely seen side of London now sadly lost. Featuring the sleazy bars, strip clubs, beatniks and cocktail lounges of 1960s Soho, ‘London in the Raw’’ is a fascinating and often startling glimpse into ‘Swinging London’ as society and its attitudes towards sex began to change forever.