Friday, November 27, 2015

The Trygon Factor (1966)

God knows what made me think of The Trygon Factor, but I've just found myself fruitlessly searching for to see if it is available on DVD or as a download.  There isn't even a bootleg copy up on You Tube - although I did find a German trailer and some excerpts (including the one above).  The Trygon Factor is one of those half-remembered films that ITV would show on a Sunday afternoon when I was a kid - they were a welcome relief from the usual seventies Sunday TV regime of religion, classic serials and general worthiness.  I haven't seen it decades and, as I said before, I can only vaguely remember it as being a very bizarre crime movie in which Stewart Granger investigated a bunch of dodgy nuns who were carrying out robberies.  Interestingly, the sequence above is one of the few I remember in detail. Even as a child, it seems, it was the kinky bits that caught my attention.  Actually, I think it was the fact that a film being shown in the daytime schedules (on a Sunday) contained what I recognise now as being effectively a BDSM sequence (as we'd call it today), which is what made it stick in my memory long after other details had faded away.  To make it even kinkier, it turns out that the shadowy figure with the Giallo-killer type leather gloves on who gropes the tied up girl, is eventually unmasked as a woman.  Bondage and implied lesbianism together on a Sunday afternoon!

You've probably noticed that everyone is speaking German in the clip, even true blue silver fox Stewart Granger.  The Trygon Factor was an Anglo-German production featuring an international cast and both English and German versions exist.  It was effectively part of the 1960s cycle of German 'Krimis' based on the works of Edgar Wallace, (this one was apparently loosely based on Wallace's Kate Plus Ten).  In stark contrast to the low-key Wallace adaptations produced in the UK by Merton Park Studios, the German films emphasised the bizarre, otlandish and grotesque aspects of Wallace's novels, setting them in a strange version of England which seemed to be made up of equals parts of Agatha Christie country house murder mysteries, foggy Jack-the-Ripper London and sleazy Soho clubland.  The Trygon Factor, as I recall, adds in various swinging sixties tropes as glamourous fashion photographers and lots of girls in their underwear, (something else you tended not to see on a Sunday afternoon).  There's also a slight science fiction angle, as I seem to remember the gang of robber nuns using some kind of fantastical multi-barrelled gun to break into bank vaults.  I think it is clear by now that the whole thing was barking mad.  My abiding memory of seeing it for the first time was astonishment as what started out as a typical British crime movie of the type that was frequently to be found in the daytime schedules (It even starred Stweart Granger, a staple of such movies), took bizarre turn after bizarre turn.  Mind you, I also remember thinking even then that Granger looked a bit old to be racing around in a sports car and trying it on with scantily clad young women.  Nowadays, of course, I see him as a role model, giving hope to middle aged men everywhere.

Anyway, I'd dearly love to see this film again and can only hope that it might trn up on Talking Pictures TV or Movies4Men - they've turned up several other movies I'd vaguely remembered seeing and enjoying on TV in my childhood, so hope springs eternal.     

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Blogger Lee1001 said...

It's now on youtube

4:31 pm  

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