Everyone Loves: Tura Satana

American and German movie posters, Tura

Tura Satana (July 10, 1938 – February 4, 2011)  Satana was born Tura Luna Pascual Yamaguchi in Hokkaido, Japan. Her father was a silent movie actor of Japanese and Filipino descent, and her mother was a circus performer of American Indian and Scots-Irish background. After the end of World War II and a stint in the Manzanar internment camp in CA, she and her family moved to the Westside of Chicago. Wait, it gets better.

Satana then came to LA at age 13 (after her marriage to a 17 year old was annulled)  with a fake ID and tried her hand at singing. When that failed, she started modeling as a bathing suit photography model and posed nude for the silent screen comic Harold Lloyd (who claimed he had no idea she was under age). She eventually became a successful exotic dancer, traveling from city to city and working with such names as Rose LeRose, The Skyscraper Girl, Tempest Storm and Stunning Smith The Purple Lady. Because of her dancing, her face, and her figure, she was ultimately voted one of the 10 Best Undressed Burlesque Dancers of the 20th Century by Bill Hanna (of Hanna-Barbera Cartoons). At 19, Sshe got pregnant, but continued dancing for the next eight months, earning a typical weekly salary of about $1,500. All by the age of 19! Tura did a bit of TV acting and eventually ended up working for B-Movie moguls Russ Meyer and  Ted V. Mikels (Astro Zombies, et al). “Faster Pussycat…” though is what she’s remembered best for.

Love the german translation of “Faster Pussycat, Kill, Kill” to “Die Satansweiber von Tittifield” (The Satanic Broads of Tit Land(?). 1965 Dr. Russ Meyer     Starring Tura Satana, Haji and Lori Williams.

Wikipedia describes it like this – Three thrill-seeking go-go dancers—Billie, Rosie and their leader, Varla encounter a young couple in the desert racing their sports cars. After killing the boyfriend with her bare hands, Varla drugs, binds, gags and kidnaps his girlfriend, Linda. On a desolate highway, the four stop at a gas station, where they see an old man  and his muscular, dimwitted son, Vegetable. The gas station attendant  tells the women that the old man and his two sons live on a decrepit ranch with a hidden cache of money. Intrigued, Varla hatches a scheme to rob the lecherous old man.

The film features gratuitous violence, sexuality, provocative gender roles, and campy  dialogue. It is one of Meyer’s more boldly titled and unflinchingly exploitative films; however, there is no nudity. In other words it’s almost perfect.

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Posted on May 6, 2011, in Everyone Loves... and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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