The 1970s was a transitional period from the Woodstock years of the 1960s.
There was a sexual revolution that continued to grow and became more apparent in New York City.
In 1977, Larry Levinson, a man with very little money, managed to get a loan to start a heterosexual swinger club in New York City called Plato’s Retreat. It was a place to socialize and meet new people. It was also a place to dance to the rhythm of the disco. But what it was most famous for was being a sex club.
American Swing is a documentary that features candid interviews with former club attendees, former club employees, and friends (now decades older) of the club’s owner (Larry Levinson). You will also see many real life images of the actual activity that was the norm at the club.
Many of the interviews were extremely candid in one sense, but also hilarious memories of their experiences at the club.
Plato’s Retreat attracted local and national attention from shows like The Phil Donahue Show. Larry seemed to be enjoying the attention and was on top of the world.
Plato’s Retreat was a secret world presented to the public. It was the talk of the town and a popular place for celebrities to visit. Larry’s vision was to market the swingers club to the mainstream by opening clubs in various cities across the country.
Although his vision was ambitious, the United States was simply not ready.
In the 1980s, Americans began to have different views on sex, especially when AIDS became a concern. The very sad and ridiculous decline of the Retreat of Plato and its owner came to an end. It was the end of an era.
From the point of view of watching an interesting documentary for entertainment and background information about the club, this would be a great documentary to watch. It’s definitely not a family movie, but it’s great to watch it with your significant other or adult friends who you think might be interested in learning about this interesting club.
Don’t expect to be shot down with this documentary. But what I feel is that this movie is a wonderful trail of memories in a very interesting period in time that will never be duplicated.
This movie can be purchased or rented on Amazon. You can also rent this movie on Netflix or Blockbuster.