Never a Tender Moment/Beyond de Sade (1979)
Starring: Marilyn Chambers, Tana Robinson, Erica Boyer
Director: Artie Mitchell
Producer: The Mitchell Brothers
Released: March 1979 (US, mail order only)
Availability: Out of print; never released on DVD; videos and Betamax copies are rare but available on eBay and through private collectors
The history of Never a Tender Moment and Beyond de Sade is as grainy and faded as the few existing copies of the S&M-themed shorts. Both shorts were produced in 1978 or 1979 at the O'Farrell Theater in San Francisco by Cinema 7, the Mitchell Brothers' film company. (Never a Tender Moment was shot in the theater's "Ultra Room," while Beyond de Sade was filmed in the Kopenhagen Live! Room. Both rooms still exist and are in operation today.) Both shorts feature Marilyn discussing various bondage delights followed by scenes of intense kink, including a notable scene showing Marilyn taking on five large anal beads. Both shorts were only available through direct mail order from the Mitchell Brothers. They were likely available on 8MM and/or 16MM film first before being converted to VHS.
Not much has been written about either short. The shorts are probably the only visual record of Marilyn's strip/live sex shows that she performed at theaters across the country beginning in the late 1970s and which culminated with her
arrest at the O'Farrell Theater in February 1985. Both shorts are available from collectors online but have never been officially released on DVD. The quality of these bootlegs is poor but worth it to see a side of Marilyn only live audiences could appreciate.
Top: Marilyn and friends performing at the O'Farrell Theater, ca. 1979. Above left: An advertisement dated June 18, 1979 from an adult magazine touted the realease of Never a Tender Moment, available only by mail order. The price for that single short film on VHS or Betamax? $129. ($444 in 2018 money!)