Released: Nov 01st, 1985
Running Time: 85
Director: Marga Albach
Cast: Jay Serling, Paul Thomas, Gina Carrera, Amber Lynn, Henri Pachard, Michael Marin, Karen Summer, Rachel Ashley, Joyce James, Shauna Grant, Michael Knight, Francois Papillon, Chelsea Blake, George Payne, Sharon Kane
Critical Rating: A 1/2
Did pornography kill Shauna Grant?
This is the question Shauna: Ever Man's Fantasy tries to answer, or should I say disprove, as the film appears more like a disclaimer by the adult industry rather than serious investigative journalism. Just from watching this film, it appears the industry has a guilty conscious about the blond stare's suicide, and it is trying to clear itself internally and with the adult consumer with this biased statement.
Everyone interviewed says the same things: that Shauna was beautiful, sensual and very vulnerable, but she didn't find the adult film industry degrading or exploitive. Everyone, that is, except for Rachel Ashley, who says Shauna came to California to become a Hollywood star, but instead was swept away by a business that she didn't like. This is the first negative thing said about pornography, but it doesn't come until almost the end and there is no follow-up questioning.
If you are expecting to see a lot of Shauna in this film, forget it. There are a few cameo film clips, but no complete sex scenes which might have helped this film's erotic quality and have added some credibility to the testimony. The only person who tries to make a correlation between Shauna's sexual performance and her suicide is a self-claimed sex therapist who does n give her name, or even a hospital affiliation, and appears staged rather than factual.
This film goes off on too many tangents to make it a serious piece of journalism, or even erotic art. More clips of Shauna with some relevant dialogue could have made this exciting as well as informative. As it is, we get more background information on the people in the movie – like how they got started and what is their favorite position – rather than insight or an explanation of Shauna's death.
If the industry does feel responsible and guilty about Shauna's death, as it appears to in this production, it did nothing to east that image in my mind. A more serious approach to fact-finding, and less emphasis on having outsiders perform sex, would have made this a more sincere and respectable documentary.