Mundo Depravados (1967)

Genres - Comedy  |   Sub-Genres - Detective Film, Sexploitation  |   Run Time - 78 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Review by Fred Beldin

Formerly a vocalist with the Duke Ellington Orchestra and the star of several all-black Westerns from the '30s (Harlem on the Prairie, The Bronze Buckaroo), actor Herb Jeffries made his first and only stab at film direction with this addled comic nudie-thriller. When a madman stalks a group of strippers (who also moonlight as TV aerobics models), it's up to a pair of wisecracking cops to get to the bottom of the mystery. Jeffries' wife, stripper Tempest Storm, is the leading lady, sharing the spotlight with Johnnie Decker and Larry Reed, two third-rate nightclub comics who stumble their way through the plot tossing out leaden one-liners and unrecognizable celebrity impressions. While Mundo Depravados isn't funny, sexy, or scary, the film is a good-natured slice of cheesecake, despite the bald-faced misogyny on display. Their profession may involve public disrobing, but these poor girls are spied upon no matter where they congregate. Whether it's in their changing rooms at the TV station or at a private all-girl party, there's always some pitiful peeper enjoying the view through a secretly drilled hole or convenient vent. With only two real "suspects," the mystery's conclusion won't surprise anyone (except the moronic onscreen detectives), but by that point, the viewer will have either been lulled to sleep by Storm's wooden monotone or charmed into submission by the sweet, daffy dancers who relax after hours by stripping for each other.