American Swing

Overview

Filmmakers Mathew Kaufman and Jon Hart explore the last gasp of the sexual revolution with this profile of Plato's Retreat -- New York City's most notorious, 1970s-era sex club. The year was 1977: the city was in the suffocating grip of a heat wave, nerves were rattled due to the energy crisis, and the social unrest was growing. But when the sun went down over the city, the nightlife flourished. The discos were packed, cocaine was all the rage at Studio 54, and over at CBGB the punks were smashing it up. Inspired...
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Overview

Filmmakers Mathew Kaufman and Jon Hart explore the last gasp of the sexual revolution with this profile of Plato's Retreat -- New York City's most notorious, 1970s-era sex club. The year was 1977: the city was in the suffocating grip of a heat wave, nerves were rattled due to the energy crisis, and the social unrest was growing. But when the sun went down over the city, the nightlife flourished. The discos were packed, cocaine was all the rage at Studio 54, and over at CBGB the punks were smashing it up. Inspired by the open sexuality in gay clubs all across town, Larry Levenson hatched the idea to open a club where people could have sex freely, without shame or threat of lawful consequences. On the surface Levenson appeared to be just your average family man, but by night he would leave his wife at home to live it up at local swingers clubs. It was with the help of some particularly shady investors, as well as his girlfriend Mary and a series of steamy public-access commercials, that Levenson made his dreams of opening an extravagant, heterosexual sex club a reality. There were no inhibitions at Plato's Retreat, as highlighted by the numerous vintage clips showing the swingers paradise in its heyday. But while the city ultimately failed in their efforts to pass ordinances that would close Plato's Retreat, the club flourished until the closing of its doors on New Year's Eve, 1985, an erotic casualty of the growing AIDS crisis. Interviews with Melvin Van Peebles, Ed Koch, as well as other journalists, celebrities, and actual club employees paint a vivid image of the carefree era before sexuality was a matter of life and death.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Deleted scenes: including shocking confessions from Plato's attendees and employees, and hilarious excerpts from Ron Jeremy
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/14/2009
  • UPC: 876964001823
  • Original Release: 2008
  • Rating:

  • Source: Magnolia
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 1:21:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 40,386

Cast & Crew

Technical Credits
Jon Hart Director, Producer
Mathew Kaufman Director
Jim Coleman Score Composer
Mark Cuban Executive Producer
Christian Hoagland Cinematographer, Producer
Jason Kliot Executive Producer
Gretchen McGowan Producer
Marc Morris Musical Direction/Supervision
Keith Reamer Editor
Joana Vicente Executive Producer
Todd Wagner Executive Producer
Michael Yessian Sound/Sound Designer
Brian Yessian Sound/Sound Designer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- American Swing
1. Introduction [2:41]
2. Beginnings [6:05]
3. Wild and Kinkey [6:37]
4. Amenities [5:47]
5. Poor Man's Playboy [8:14]
6. Something For Everyone [6:31]
7. Devestating Therapy [5:22]
8. Trouble Ahead [11:35]
9. Rebuilding the Empire [6:20]
10. Impending Doom [10:50]
11. A Humble End [6:41]
12. End Credits [4:02]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- American Swing
   Play Movie
   Scene Selection
   Set Up
      Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital
      Audio: 2.0 Dolby Digital
      Subtitles: Spanish
      Subtitles: Off
   Special Features
      Deleted Scenes
         Play All
         Early Impressions
         King Larry
         Buffet Notes
         The Scene
         The Bet
         Charlie and Annie
         Ron Jeremy's Recollection Collection
         Teen Memories
         In and Out With Dick
         Red Car
         '77 New York Blackout
         The Stewardess Story
      Also From Magnolia Home Entertainment
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