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January 10, 2014

Movie Review: Private (aka Do It, 2003)

Directed by Tinto Brass

Movie Review by Greg Goodsell

Tinto Brass? Lots of ass. But you already knew that.

In this frenetic anthology film, cinema’s most perverse proctologist looks at six very sexy couples. “Alibi:” A vacationing couple in Morocco, celebrating their seventh anniversary stave off that itch by inviting their bellhop to participate in some fun and games. “Double Trouble:” She cheats on her TV network president hubby with an actor in a steamy game of tennis. He cheats on his wife with his secretary. It all turns out alright in the end. “Two Hearts and a Hut:” A maid at a Swiss resort joins an older couple for lesbian and sadomasochistic scenes in exchange for large tips to fund their dream hotel with her bellhop boyfriend. “Jolly Bangs:” A faithless wife entertains her husband at the beach with steamy tales of past indiscretions. “Evil to Him Who Thinks Evil:” An engaged couple swings with a British couple only for the husband to learn that his betrothed offered up her only virginal orifice in the ordeal. “Call me a pig, ‘cause I like it!” A married couple on holiday in London provide some voyeuristic enjoyment for someone watching through a window – but they’re in for a rude surprise!

These sort of soft-core romps are a bit immune to criticism. They seem to sum up the five word phrase: It is what it is. The Blu-Ray from Cult Epics is especially bright and vibrant, befitting the oversaturated color palette. All of the sets feature the same Art Deco semi-circle design, reiterating Brass’ abiding fascination with the female derriere.

For the salacious minded: How hard is it? Private straddles the fine line between hard and soft. We get to see some crevices a plenty, but the only penetration, like the format it now finds itself in, is strictly “digital,” ahem. All the male actors that appear in the film have all freshly returned from a trip to the gag shop, if you catch my drift – but this adds to the project’s slapstick comedy nature. It must be noted that the lead actress in the second segment hasn’t seen a razor in a while. The domineering lesbian in the third segment may actually put off a few people to any immediate canoodling.

This can be a good or bad thing or a bad thing: While hardcore pornography is direct and blunt in its honesty, soft-core pornography with its cheese and tease can only truly aspire to being … truly nasty!

In a related bit of news, I was able to see the very rare Tinto Brass feature Dropout (1970) theatrically courtesy Los Angeles’ New Beverly Cinema. The film starred the legendary Franco Nero and Vanessa Redgrave before they were married shortly afterwards. Dropout was an anarchic comedy that some claim inspired Stanley Kubrick, who visited the set before he set out to film A Clockwork Orange (1971). The fact that Brass started out with worthwhile films on important topics – and is now cranking out late night cable TV fodder, is rather depressing. I guess not enough people went to see those! (You should also check out Brass’ The Howl from 1968. It’s a mind-tripping flick that seems to have inspired Jodorowsky.)

The Cult Epics Blu-Ray features a beautiful new transfer, both an Italian and English language track, the film’s trailer and a “making of” featurette. This reviewer admits to not toughing it out for this feature as it has the warty Brass groping all of his female actresses. I can live without seeing that …

This disc will find itself readily into the hands of people who want to see it. Do it!

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