A Life in Dirty Movies

Directed by Wiktor Ericsson
Film Movement
80 Minutes
Documentary, Romance, Erotic, LGBTQIA2S+, Drama
Women's Studies, LGBTQIA2S+, Sex & Sexuality, Film Studies
Not Rated
DVD $14.98
PPR $200.00
DRL $499.00
PPR+DRL $599.00
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A Life in Dirty Movies is a love story about legendary sexploitation director Joe Sarno, "the Ingmar Bergman of 42nd Street," and his loyal wife and collaborator Peggy. The film follows the Sarnos for a year, as 88-year old Joe struggles to get a new film project off the ground - a female-centric softcore film that harkens back to the style of his heyday as a filmmaker in the 1960s. As audiences tag along for the eventful and often hilarious journey between wintery Manhattan and the couple’s summer retreat in Sweden, the film’s intimate perspective reveals a filmmaker on the verge of being rediscovered in his golden years. Intercut is a look back to the evolution of softcore films seen as racy in their day into unmistakable hardcore porn that all but put Sarno and his artform out of business. The film chronicles Sarno’s significant place in film history as an erotic "auteur," whose ambitions as a filmmaker often surpassed the needs of the genre he helped define. A Life in Dirty Movies is a clever and sincere portrait of a unique couple who follow their passion in life - onscreen and off.

"Recommended" - Video Librarian


  • Joe Sarno
  • Peggy Sarno
DVD Features

Sound: Stereo 2.0 and 5.1 Surround Sound

Discs: 1

  • Highest Rating
    "A sweet and illuminating journey into cult cinema history..."
    Stephen Dalton, The Hollywood Reporter
  • Highest Rating
    "Strange, passionate [and] intensely creative!"
    Tom Huddleston, TimeOut London


Awards & Recognition

Official Selection
Official Selection
BFI London Film Festival
Official Selection
Göteborg Int'l Film Festival

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