Revered among aficionados of erotic cinema , director Giovanni "Tinto" Brass remains something of an acquired taste for the rest of the movie-going mundo. From his semi-respectable beginnings with the likes of COL CUORE IN GOLA (a/k/a I AM WHAT I AM) and NEROSUBIANCO which memorably did the rounds of stateside theaters as THE ARTFUL PENETRATION OF BARBARA before settling onto the more literal and less censor-baiting BLACK ON WHITE to his devil may care paeans to the female rump such as COSI FAN TUTTE, TRASGREDIRE and P.O. BOX TINTO BRASS, Brass has provided considerable grist to the mill of his detractors, still legion among the critical community, who consider him little more than a hack without interest beyond the prurient. As if to cater to those who didn't have the balls to fess up to their girlie watcher's inclination, he would occasionally craft something a bit more ambitious, drawing from historical fact (SALON KITTY, CALIGULA) or literary source (LA CHIAVE, SENSO '45), temporarily placating the highbrows while already preparing an upcoming unapologetic skin fest.
Not credited as such, VOYEUR was based on Alberto Moravia's latter-day novel L'UOMO CHE GUARDA, which the author had conceded for adaptation prior to his death in 1990. However, his wife and daughter, in charge of the estate, strongly opposed the book being bartered to what they considered a mere pornographer. Brass went ahead anyway and screened them the results prior to general release in hope of still securing the justification that comes with literary credit. Its absence speaks for itself. Moravia himself may have been as carefree a lecher as Brass, considering the large number of heavy breathing cinematic renditions he agreed to during his lifetime. For some reason, stunning Stefania Sandrelli who had been in the most applauded of all Moravia movies, Bernardo Bertolucci's THE CONFORMIST ended up shedding her wardrobe more than any other actress as CONJUGAL LOVE, DESIDERIA and THE LIE (the latter two based on the author's TIME OF DESECRATION and L'ATTENZIONE respectively) duly attest. This track record in mind, old Alberto would surely have appreciated Tinto's take on his purple prose.
A literal translation of the Italian title would be "The Man Who Watches" and this description befits lead character Dodo (a solid performance by Franco Casale from Stelvio Massi's odd giallo ARABELLA, BLACK ANGEL), a Roman literary professor and virtual bystander in his own life. His apathy is at least partly to blame for the recent departure of his breathtaking spouse Silvia, not so much played as quite literally made flesh by Polish model Katarina Vasilissa, who drifts in 'n' out of his existence whilst guarding the mystery of her motives. This dreamlike narrative strand is beautifully handled but contrasts enormously with the frankly tiresome broad comedy routines set at the house of Dodo's decrepit yet still ridiculously virile old dad, played in less than convincing old age make up by Brass regular Franco Brianciaroli. His emotionally crippling lethargy a suggested product of the feared inability of filling his respected father's big shoes, Dodo bears involuntary witness to hugely pecker-ed pater (yep, Tinto has dragged out the prosthetics again !) attempting to seduce nubile housekeeper Fausta, a caricature constantly on the verge of spilling out of her half-buttoned blouse, portrayed with infectious good humor by curvaceous Cristina Garavaglia from Luigi Russo's straight-up skin flick FEAR OF SCANDAL. This brand of farce may have a long tradition in Italian cinema but it doesn't travel well. The filmmaker seems more at home when delivering the concentrated carnality of Dodo's encounters with his estranged wife in a sparsely attended cinema (showing THE KEY) and with African exchange student Pascasie, memorably portrayed by gorgeous Raffaella Offidani who left an indelible impression as the hapless prostitute ravished (and ravaged) by the title character in Stuart Gordon's underrated CASTLE FREAK. Also watch for veteran exploitation actress Martine Brochard, from Domenico Paolella's notorious STORY OF A CLOISTERED NUN and Umberto Lenzi's ramshackle giallo EYEBALL, as the lovelorn Contessa who comes to visit Dodo's dad.
Though often cited by "those in the know" as quintessential Brass, my main problem with VOYEUR lies in the lack of sympathetic characters. Though apparently empowered by her decision to depart, Silvia simply turns out to have been fornicating her father in law on the side, marking her out as one of the drippiest of the director's pro-active heroines by far. Fortunately, the wall to wall skin display facilitates overlooking such narrative shortcomings, with a nudist beach orgy thrown in at the eleventh hour seemingly just to up the epidermal ante. Regular Brass contributor Massimo Di Venanzo points his camera in the right direction, shooting pretty pictures of female posteriors and the eternal city alike. Veteran composer Riz Ortolani, who will probably go to his grave forever identified with that insanely catchy tune "More" from the MONDO CANE soundtrack in spite of an estimable subsequent track record, adds a stylishly playful score, successfully soothing over the sutures brought on by jarringly shifting moods, partly recycled from his work on Brass' vastly superior PAPRIKA.
L'uomo che guarda
Action / Drama / Romance
L'uomo che guarda
Action / Drama / Romance
At a college in Rome, a professor, nicknamed "Dodo" is in a deep depression. His stunningly beautiful wife, Silvia has just left him for another man. He wants her back very badly and has erotic daydreams about her. While visiting his bedridden father, Alberto he meets his dad's very sexy live-in nurse, Fausta who takes care of much more then his broken leg. A beautiful young student, Pascasie in his class asks him for a ride home and seduces the lucky man, but he does not answer because he still he wonders about his wife and her lover. Fausta tells him of a beautiful young woman who has been having a sexual relationship with his father.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
May 19, 2021 at 10:04 AM