Movie Review: Sex: The Annabel Chong Story
So, after sitting through ninety minutes of execution and genocide, I took a brisk walk over two New York City blocks to watch a movie about a woman who fucked 251 guys in one day. That woman was Annabel Chong. That’s her porn name anyway. Her real name is Grace Quek.
Annabel is the pioneer of porno’s WORLD’S BIGGEST GANGBANG series, though at the time when she made the first film she didn’t think anybody would try to beat her record. However, the porn industry is no different than Hollywood and Hollywood loves sequels. Also, as a side note, Annabel’s attempted goal was to fuck 300 guys, but during the course of the gangbang she received a cut in her vagina (presumably from one of her consort’s fingernails) and had to stop at 251.
I was introduced to porno at a young age. In about sixth or seventh grade I had this rich friend whose mother had a large collection of it. She was divorced, so I had a lot of fairly interesting adventures with this friend due to his mostly absent, neglectful and overcompensating parents. Though his mom had quite a few tapes stashed away in her bedroom, we always ended up watching the same one and not even the whole thing, just the same scene over and over again.
I still remember the typical porno “plot”. This was in the early ’80s, too, before video porn had totally replaced porno shot on 35mm film. Not a lot of people even had VCRs in those days. I didn’t and I think Vincent was the only one who did. His mom also had a big screen TV in her bedroom, one of those old, crappy front-projection systems. Anyway, the scene we always watched was about a college co-ed who goes to her professor’s office to get some “extra tutoring”. He fucks her, gives her an “A” I suppose, then calls up a male friend of his and the three of them go to a cabin in the woods to have a ménage à trois.
The one thing I learned from this film (which I never knew the name of, and does it really matter?) is that I didn’t really like porno. It held an obvious curiosity to me, but it was really kind of gross. I can dig the nudity and the general fucking, but the extreme close-ups of the sexual act are not that attractive to watch. Since those early, innocent days, what has interested me more are the details of the industry. The attitudes and language of porn professionals are fascinating. They almost all sound so sad and screwed up to me. And Annabel was an excellent subject to cover for a documentary.
At the time this documentary was filmed, in addition to being a porn star, Annabel was a student in USC majoring in Sexology. Annabel explains that she decided to do the massive gangbang to “shake up” modern notions of female sexuality, that the gangbang would “empower” women and show that they can be as aggressive about the sexual act as men are. Like a badly written action movie that telegraphs the ending of the film within the first five minutes, it’s pretty obvious how SEX is going to end.
Do women have it any better these days because Annabel fucked 251 guys in one day? Hmmm, let me think about that for five seconds. Her act has not become a real defining moment in the history of feminism. Annabel’s only real acceptance by the mainstream media was an appearance on the JERRY SPRINGER show. I don’t even know who made SEX, but from the incredibly low budget look of it I would have to assume just one of her friends.
I love hearing interviews with porno stars. They always try to present themselves as people who are not only well adjusted human beings, but more well-adjusted than anybody else because they are so comfortable with their sexuality. They act like the rest of the world is screwed up because we’re a bunch of up-tight prudes. Annabel talks very smartly about feminism and sexuality, but then in one scene she slices up her arm with a Swiss army knife so she can “feel what it’s like to be alive”. That’s a well-adjusted human being for you.
SEX isn’t the most well made documentary. Even though it’s pretty interesting, it’s clearly not as thorough and complex as MR. DEATH. The one note that I want to end this review on is that AIDS is a big topic discussed in this film. It was obviously a big concern at the gangbang and a big risk for Annabel to take to have sex with almost 300 strangers. The sequence of the documentary where Annabel takes her HIV tests and several people are interviewed about the possibility of her contracting the virus is a real edge-of-your-seat moment. You have no idea how it’s going to turn out.
Before the gangbang, Annabel says she’s willing to go through with it and risk getting AIDS because if she dies at least she went out fucking. What a completely fucked up thing to say! If a person gets AIDS, it’s not as though she’s walking down the street fine one day and then just spontaneously keels over dead from it.
One of the most horrifying documentaries I have ever seen is SILVERLAKE LIFE: THE VIEW FROM HERE. It’s about two gay lovers and their last year on the planet Earth before they die from AIDS. And it isn’t a pretty sight. How this disease ravages the human body is absolutely frightening. So, if anybody else ever thinks “at least I’ll go out fucking” had better watch SILVERLAKE LIFE and get some sense knocked into their head. As for Annabel, I don’t know if it’s too late for her or not.