The hypocrisies of censorship and censors are no more evident than in today’s world. Unfortunately, Irving Wallace’s The Seven Minutes was a potboiiler novel which averted the essense of the problem in resolving the story. Producer-director Russ Meyer, himself a censor-exploited as well as a censor-exploiting filmmaker, began with a story handicap and adds a few of his own. Meyer, obscures the issues in cardboard-caricatures of his heavies, with regular time-out for the sexually-liberated dalliances which have been his stock in trade.
Large cast is headed by Wayne Maunder, attorney for Robert Moloney, bookstore owner busted by vice cop Charles Drake, Philip Carey, excellent as a d.a., is egged on by J. C. Flippen, a behind-the-scenes king-maker, to attack the book-within-a-book as the reason John Sarno brutally raped Yvonne D’Angers, though sadist Billy Durkin was really to blame. Lyle Bettger is the accused boy’s father, and Marianne McAndrew is his secretary who shifts to Maunder’s side.
Climax of the trial (Harold J. Stone presiding) is surprise appearance of Yvonne De Carlo, a semi-retired former film star who reveals she wrote the book in question many years ago, and concealed her past to insure a career.
Meyer’s artistic eye remains most sure in composition and pacing. Far too little attention is paid to acting, and too much of the dialog seems one-take in nature. As usual, all femme castings are knockouts, including Edy Williams (Mrs Meyer).