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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

watch it: “Pamela’s Prayer (Christian anti-kissing propaganda)”

Horrifying. Would be hilarious if some people didn’t actually think this way:


Makes me want to kiss someone totally inappropriate and wrong for me right now, just for fun.

This is actually clips from a 1998 feature-length film, the tagline of which is “Yes, it seemed unfair… until the day she married.” Which is the day when, I can only assume, she learned that her husband — the man she was now shackled to for life lest she find herself condemned to an eternity of hellfire — couldn’t kiss for shit.

And yes, you can buy it on DVD, from Amazon U.S. and Amazon Canada. (It’s not available except as an import in the U.K., which says much for their sanity over there.)

(via fourfour)



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  • Lady Tenar

    “When you lie down on your wedding bed…”

    EWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If my dad had ever begun a father-daughter heart to heart like that I think I’d still be in the shower trying to get clean. Except he never would have because he’s not a freaking perv. Still, what do you expect from the purity ball crowd?

    Love the traumatic “almost kissing” scene. Bad girl, Pamela! Learn to obey your father. You need practice deferring to the patriarch so you can be a good help-meet to your future husband!

    Awww, and then they don’t show the kiss when they get married. I’m so glad they decided to protect our delicate sensibilities.

  • Kenny

    Urrgg… her father was a creepy fucker. Ever so slightly reptilian.

  • Der Bruno Stroszek

    It’s impossible for me to imagine someone watching this and thinking “Finally! They’re going after kissing! Kissing’s got away with it for far too long!”

  • Bobbi

    AGGGHHHH!!! That is one of the creepiest things I’ve ever seen! At first I thought I might be able to view it objectively, but the shivering got so bad, I had to turn it off just before the mid point. I agree with Kenny, the dad was slightly reptilian…definitely a creepy fucker! ICK!!!!!!

  • Dart

    One could easily take this video, add a few random weird touches like old ladies that appear out of nowhere and neon lights and sinister musical score, and it’s basically “Twin Peaks.” I’m just saying, that dad’s the creepiest character I’ve ever seen. I almost expected him to perform an exorcism on her girl friend.

  • I kissed my first boy when I was in first grade. Boy, I would’ve been in trouble.

    Mary Ann – this made me want to go out and kiss some inappropriate people too.

    I wonder what “Dad” would say if she wanted to kiss Jessica. Since she and Jessica can’t marry (in most US states) maybe she’d get a pass…

  • marshall

    I blame Obama…

  • LaSargenta

    Makes me want to kiss someone totally inappropriate and wrong for me right now, just for fun.

    Yea! Go MAJ!

    Mmmmmm. Kissing.

  • marky

    You mean this is not a joke? I’m watching this thing, sufficiently creeped out and horrified, thinking it’s a parody of some sort. To think that there’s actually people who think like this…wow. Not many, I imagine, but someone does.

  • JoshB

    Wow, Poe’s Law is in full effect.

    The father gave off serious child molester vibes. Someone needs to put that guy in clown makeup. Scariest horror film ever, guaranteed.

  • Left_Wing_Fox

    Google “Purity Balls”.

    I recommend something 80 proof or greater as brain bleach to sterilize the creepy.

  • Alli

    Ugh Left_Wing_fox, that’s the first thing I thought of when I saw this video. Purity balls creep the hell out of me. I don’t care if you want to wait to have sex until you’re married, but to pledge to your FATHER that you will, is just F’d up. Your father shouldn’t control your sexuality, and no father should want that control either. I’m sure no parent wants their child to become pregnant before they’re ready, or to get a disease, etc. But Purity Balls go WAY beyond that. You become your father’s property. Just so F’d up…

  • LaSargenta

    Anyone else notice that the sets for this seem like they are straight out of a porn movie?

  • Lady Tenar

    I kissed my first boy when I was in first grade. Boy, I would’ve been in trouble.

    Not as much trouble as me. I kissed my first boy in Pre-K! Although we did actually get married first but it was a sandbox wedding rather than a church wedding so I don’t know if these folks would consider it valid. And, unfortunately, the marriage could not survive kindergarten so I guess I was a used up divorcee by the age of 5. Damaged goods before I could even read. What a shame…

    Seriously, I can’t believe there are people out there like this. Even in the Victorian era, people were allowed to kiss before they were married, although they did have to be engaged. Still, though. When you are more sexually uptight than the Victorians, that’s getting a little Xtreme.

  • Christine

    It’s as if the daughters are being screened by their fathers…it’s like flames on the side of my face….

    I’m thankful I was raised by heathen Lutherans. My dad wouldn’t tolerate such foolishness. It’s up to me to deny my own sexuality!

  • It reminded me oddly enough of a bit in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s first novel This Side of Paradise* in which the narrator is going on and on about how liberal girls were back in the early 1920s because they kissed a lot. I suppose from the viewpoint of an American who grew up in the Victorian era, kissing before marriage must have seemed daring but from the viewpoint of my generation, it is very, very hard not to wonder if kissing is all they’re really talking about–or whether kissing is just an euphemism for something else.

    That said, I do remember once receiving advice from an older married female friend about being careful about whom I kissed when–ahem–I found myself in the company of strangers because some nasty diseases can be transmitted that way.

    However, she had no issues with me and my former intended kissing outside of wedlock as long as we didn’t overdo it. In other words, it’s one thing to kiss in order to show affection for the one you’re kissing. It’s another to kiss so long that you’re basically just showing off.

    That said, I can’t picture growing up in a world so leery of any PDA that one never kisses anyone–not even family members–prior to marriage.

    And didn’t Jesus himself have no problem kissing people outside of marriage? Of course, it might have been better for him if he had been more picky about the people he kissed but he wasn’t. And surely no good Christian wants to second-guess Jesus, right?

    * Isn’t it wonderful how many of MaryAnn’s readers are so literary? ;-)

  • Alli

    Add me to the list of people who had their first kiss when they were 5. I kissed my friend underneath the monkey bars. I’m going to hell I guess.

  • I don’t even remember my first kiss–though I do believe I was a lot younger than 5 at the time. And judging from the stories I got from witnesses when I was older, I was more the kissee than the kisser. And anyway, the girl who kissed me back then is married today.

  • Dre in Spain

    Would the teenagers of today seriously look at this film and think “no, I must not kiss someone before marriage”?

    My mum told me that if I was to ever get married without living with someone first, she would disinherit me. It would save me from having any idiotic notions that my beloved was perfect. Having said that, my mum seemed to have a problem with marriage. Every time she saw the “just married” happy couple leaving the church, she (from the safety of her car) would wind the window down and shout “stupid girl!” and drive off.

    My father was in the navy, his method was to shag everything that moved and see how it turns out.

    I am 37 yrs old and single. I believe my “must have sex and kissing” upbringing beats any christian antisex/kissing film any day of the week.

    Tonio, is that lady who kissed you back your wife?

  • No.

  • And she’s just a few years older than me so she was still single when we kissed.

  • Dre in Spain

    What a tease.. she was just messing with your idealistic youthful mind. The heartbreaker!

    You were just a toyboy. No match for a 7/8 yr old cougar.

    If only your father was as twisted, I mean, “caring” as the chap in the video clip, you would have never been subjected to such agonies.

  • Hasimir Fenring

    And didn’t Jesus himself have no problem kissing people outside of marriage?

    Jesus had no problem kissing men, so I doubt He’d get very far with to-day’s Christian Right.

  • It’s the seventh sign of Christian Right Wing Desperation folks, right here in Media City, where kids are slipping out of junior high during the lunch break for oral sex and these guys are worried about kissing?

    Reminds me of a Seventh Heaven episode I caught where the minister spotted his daughter kissing with a boy and complained about it to his wife. She looked at him like he was out of his mind and gave him a get real speech.

  • Dokeo

    Did the creepy dad just marry his 16-year-old daughter off to the first kiss-free guy who came along? Guess you gotta get ’em settled before they’re old enough to think for themselves.

    Yikes – IMDB says this was made in 1998! From the hair, I thought it was late 80’s.

  • Lady Tenar

    I suppose from the viewpoint of an American who grew up in the Victorian era, kissing before marriage must have seemed daring but from the viewpoint of my generation, it is very, very hard not to wonder if kissing is all they’re really talking about–or whether kissing is just an euphemism for something else.

    Quite likely a euphemism. Pre-marital sex was actually relatively common by the 20s. Condoms became much easier to produce then and sales of them skyrocketed. Plus a whole lot of unsupervised youth, some of them, for the first time in history, in possession of cars…

  • Isobel

    Ick. I just looked at Wikipedia re: purity balls, because I’d never heard of them. There’s a link to (I think) a New York Times article, with photos, of a purity ball. The girls are all dressed up in white dresses, and they’re mostly really young (under ten?). This squicks me out for two reasons – 1. they have no idea what they are agreeing to do, really, at age 8 by signing a ‘purity pledge’ or whatever, and it’s a pretty unhealthy thing (i.e. sex is bad) to be telling girls that young. 2. They’re with their Dads all got up in white dresses like brides. Just ick!

  • I’m suddenly thankful that in Australia we don’t have a film industry large enough to support extreme views like this…

  • Brian

    @Stuart: I highly doubt that this was a production of any Hollywood studio or the “film industry” per se. There are plenty of church organizations with the resources to mount productions like this on their own. Heck, they can probably crank out something like this for less than the cost of one Sunday’s utilities at a stadium-sized megachurch.

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