Diabolique: One Slow Descent into Respectability
I’m on Diabolique once more, continuing to examine British culture through the lens of films in the BFI Flipside series. This time it’s The Pleasure Girls and a scandal that shook the British government straight up to the prime minister’s office.
Every now and then, though, a filmmaker slips one through that doesn’t kowtow to the need to have everyone punished for having sex or a nip of booze. Such is the case with The Pleasure Girls (1965, Gerry O’Hara). In this slice-of-life story of young women trying to make it in the big city, there are prices to be paid for certain actions, but rather than scurrying home in defeat, humbled and having learned their lesson, the women tough it out, accepting whatever injury they may acquire along the way but determined to make it on their own and on their own terms.