The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Ant-Man and the Wasp
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Brimming with Klimt visions and risqué jests
I am not a huge Franco fan but I can say this his films contain such bizarre imagery, odd-ball stories and brazen disregard for the social status quo that the man is just fascinating. Female Vampire represents one of his most off-kilter efforts to date.
The story is nearly impossible to describe, but here goes; Countess Barthory (the lovely Lina Romay) is on vacation in Europe. She is mute sex maniac and a vampire/succubus. Her henchman (also mute) goes about collecting willing subjects for the Countess for her to feed her lusts.
And that is about it. Most of the film is filled with slow, dreamy sequences interconnected with shots out a car window, which are the only scenes the Countess speaks. Lacking in plot on a grand scale, Franco fills the running time with as much full-frontal nudity as can be packed in a film. Wisely choosing not to go down the hardcore road (unless your watching the badly re-edited German X-rated version) the nudity and sex come off as genuinely erotic.
Romay spends almost all of her screen time almost completely nude; either rolling about in some kind of horny-angst or fulfilling the same desires. A nice touch to the couplings is that while she must kill her companions to sustain her own life (she is a vampire after all), after each death she seems both deeply remorseful for having to take life and yet more aroused than before. Like a drug addict, the more she gets, the more she needs, the more she hates herself.
The film exists is a wide range of cuts and editions, but three main versions seem prevalent. The Bare Breasted Countess aka the "R-rated" cut; Female Vampire aka the "NC-17" cut; and the re-edited porn version. Of them all the "NC-17" is by far the best; the weaker versions are to dry and the hardcore version features explicit footage obviously spliced in from a different film.
Oddly watchable and one film Franco fans shouldn't miss anyone else should just check you brain at the door and enjoy.
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