Tuesday, December 13, 2011
MARQUIS DE SADE (1996)
D: Gywneth Gibby. (New Concorde DVD)
This out-of-print release is a low-budget but carefully produced, staged and acted drama that comes off like a well-produced, well-shot low budget stage play. DeSade (Nick Mancuso) relates some episodic debaucheries to a young woman who's sister is missing. The woman believes that DeSade knows what happened to her lost sibling and willingly plays a teasing game of 'quid pro quo' to glean any shred of information that will resolve the girl's whereabouts. The film's core structure is a blatant nod to Hannibal Lechter's mind games in SILENCE OF THE LAMBS. The earnest acting and production values are superior to the usual 90's Corman fare and this effort just skirts the exploitation cease pool with mild nudity. Fans expecting a higher sleaze factor may want to check out Jess Franco's JUSTINE (1969) or DeSADE (1969) which Corman co-directed with Cy Enfield and Gordon Hessler. Light R-rated entertainment that's easy on the eyes. It has the look of a milder, slicker skinimax/Playboy production. The out-of-print, full frame (1.33:1) DVD is nicely authored with lush colors and an intentional soft, filtered image. Recommended for DeSade enthusiasts.