Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Romance- Director’s Cut (1999)- NR

On the Daily Show last month there was a skit that did a parody on the word "paradox." Jon Stewart said "isn't it a paradox that the word paradox must be used so often by seemingly intelligent people?" I looked it up. Paradox is "when opposite truths seem to simultaneously exist." Here?s an example. A woman finds genuine caring, affection, erotic nurturing and affirmation in a sadomasochistic relationship when she is tied-up in painful bondage. Marie, played by Caroline Ducey in "Romance", later remarks that her lover "ties me up without tying me down."

Romance is a remarkable film. It contained arguable one of the most erotic and explicit sex scenes in a non-X rated film, a full 3-minute scene of an actual birth (we get to see everything) and a full 15 minutes segment of an anal compulsive sadomasochistic lover trying again and again to get his knots tied just right. Romance is about a sexually frustrated women in a very dysfunctional relationship. She pleads for her partner to simply remove his undershirt in bed, seeing that this is as close to erotic affection as she will get. She therefore seeks other lovers. She eventually finds love from an older man who loves ropes, handcuffs and bondage.

Let's go back to the "paradox" word. The film is directed by Catherine Breillat, one of a number of women in film that are exploring erotic pleasure from (their words) a female prospective. The paradox (sorry) of the film is that from this highly successful women's prospective, the beautiful young males in this film are sexually dysfunctional. However, the older man with obvious flaws is more attractive. You no longer need to wonder why I like this film!

This is the second movie reviewed on this blog that I strongly recommend it to be seen in the NR "Director's Cut" version. I reviewed "Y Tu Mama Tambien (2001)" with the same recommendation. These films from Blockbuster in R versions are stripped of not only key scenes but also the scenes that truly make the films erotic.

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