There’s always something endearing about behind-the-scenes material. I’m rather fond of that photograph of Robert Powell taken during the filming of Jesus of Nazareth: the actor, strapped to his cross, is wrapped in a blanket and being given a drink and a cigarette by a crew member between takes, which deliciously demystifies the whole thing. There are some similar enjoyably fourth-wall-breaking moments in this excellent look at the making of Mrs Smith’s Method: Pandora strolling into shot in modern t-shirt and knickers to give a bit of directorial advice; the discussions over how to achieve the impression of an utterly frenzied birching of Amelia Jane’s bare arse without going beyond what would be safe, sane and consensual for the actor.
Mrs Smith's Method, released a couple of years ago, is one of the more ambitious and elaborate Dreams of Spanking productions. It pushes many buttons: sly pokes at Victorian moralizing, hypocrisy and weirdness, especially via Molly Malone’s fabulous portrayal of a thrashing-obsessed, for-your-own-good religious loon; the ritualistic elements involved in hardcore discipline, such as kissing the implement and thanking your chastiser, and the closing blissed-out, yielding contrition. However, seeing the cast interact between takes as themselves is endearing and a good reminder that, no matter how dark the scene you want to play out might be, it can still be enjoyable fun entered into with full knowledge and great enthusiasm.
I’ve recently been dabbling in spanking shoots again myself and, along with the indisputable fun it is to yell at a cute girl and spank her pert bum till it’s glowing and hot, the laughs and hugs and the reassurance afterwards that she enjoyed it, that it was fun working together, and that we’re all good, are as important a part of the experience as the actual scene.
Severe punishment, the sort that comes with a few darker overtones of wretched humiliation and the crushing of a free spirit, may not be to everyone’s taste, though it’s definitely hotter than hot for a lot of people. I’d have to admit that my own preferences run more to the knockabout comedy end of the spanking scene, so I probably like this making-of version slightly more than the original. It’s also a good way of showing just how much work goes into the making of a porn film that’s a little bit more ambitious than most, and would be just as helpful as a masterclass in making your own historical romp, should you be so inclined. Mrs Smith Behind The Scenes is certainly a terrific companion piece to Mrs Smith’s Method: watch them back to back, if you have a free afternoon. As to whether you prefer to tantalise yourself with the making-of and then watch the film proper, or enjoy the feature first and then go back and see how it was all done, that’s entirely up to you.