Despite the literal boatload of money the adult film industry brings in each year, very few will eagerly admit that they actually do watch these pornographic adventures. Well, I guess I can't blame them. Usually, I'm not one to pass judgment when it comes to "artistic expression". As a matter of fact, I love to be shocked, sickened and disturbed and believe me, it's not easy. There are still those who feel that they have the right to tell us what we can or can't see and when someone's artistic vision has gone too far. To this I say, bullshit. No one has the right to cut, chop, edit, splice or repaint art, plain and simple. If you don't want to watch it, change the damn channel. Don't ruin it for the rest of us you beeyotches. Although one could be hard pressed to argue the artistic merit of a porno film, it still stands as an expression nonetheless. Even if it is art that's created solely for the acceptance of the almighty dollar. Well, Stacy Baker (AKA Stacy Valentine) will probably try to convince you of otherwise, and it's her dedication and determination that I truly admire. She may be a porn star, but she's still remains a real person just like you or I (except she has double d's).
In the documentary The Girl Next Door filmmaker Christine Fugate follows Stacy Baker around with her voyeuristic cameras and documents the fascinating transformation of the Stacy Baker from next door, to the Stacy Valentine of the adult film industry. All it took was the encouragement from her then husband to convince Stacy to send in some amateur pics to Hustler magazine. A short time later Stacy Valentine was born and an every day housewife was knee deep in DP (that's double penetration to you and me) before you could say get the kids' on the school bus. The trials of young Stacy are documented from every angle, and the bulk of this documentary focuses on her on again off again relationship with her then boyfriend Justin (also an adult film star). This comes along with Stacy's valiant quest to win an award (and oddly enough it seems that any award will do). Stacy just wants to be recognized in both her personal and professional life (isn't that what we all want?). It may not seem like the hardest of all lives from the offset (how hard could it be to fuck on camera?) but it is indeed work nonetheless. People may love to go to Disneyland, but if you worked there, it probably wouldn't seem so great anymore. OK, so that analogy sucked (sue me), and Stacy does admit to the fact that she loves to have sex (she doesn't mention anything about Disneyland though). The bottom line is that she is a real person, and she does have feelings too (after seeing her pawed by sloppy fans at a convention signing I felt disturbed myself).
The Girl Next Door does an impressive job of allowing us to enter the world of an adult entertainer. Much like the recent Ron Jeremy Pornstar, The Girl Next Door gives us an enlightening look into the center of a world we may only have seen from the outside until now. The Girl Next Door differs from Pornstar in that it focuses less on friends and family and centers its subject matter right in the forefront. We're with Stacy (quite often) when she wakes up in the morning and when she goes to bed at night (she doesn't like her sheets tucked in, she feels trapped that way). This allows us to just about enter her psyche and this in turn allows Stacy to come across as an everyday girl even more (at one point we even visit with Stacy and a hypno therapist). The film seems very personal to this effect, and we in turn get to know this girl very well. Her parents support her (they even attend the AVM awards for adult films when Stacy is nominated) as do her friends (even if it seems as if they don't understand her). Despite all of this support, poor Stacy still seems like a sad girl. As Stacy says at one point, people just want to fuck her. She's just looking for someone to hold her, just because they want to be next to her, not because they want to get in her pants (should I send her my number?). Misunderstood and still searching, we never truly get the impression that Stacy is wholly happy. Career wise, she's successful and seems to be rolling in the dough, if she makes it to make-up school like she intends, then there could be hope for ol' Stacy after all.
Shot on what appears to be digital video, The Girl Next Door was presented full frame and the video quality looked just fine. The Girl Next Door will be surfacing on VHS and DVD in the very near future. I highly recommend seeking out this documentary if you have the means. If I have one complaint, it's that at just about 80-minutes, it's a tad too short. I wanted to see more of Stacy (not like that you pervs) she's a truly fascinating human being. The documentary is well structured, edited and the light vocals on the soundtrack serve the film well. In the world of documentary filmmaking it doesn't get much better than this. Do yourself a favor and check it out.
For more info on The Girl Next door you can visit the films official site by clicking here, or visit Indican Pictures by clicking here.