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‘The Devils’ Is Just As Blasphemous, Bawdy, and Relevant Today As It Was When It Was Banned In 1971

  • Indiewire
‘The Devils’ Is Just As Blasphemous, Bawdy, and Relevant Today As It Was When It Was Banned In 1971
When Ken Russell’s provocative religious horror “The Devils” became available to stream for the first time last week, cinephiles the world over were re-introduced to one of the greatest under appreciated films of all time — one that is surprisingly poignant in our current state of political unease. Infamous for its controversial release (the film was banned in several countries and received an X rating only after Russell cut a handful of the most incendiary scenes), the 1971 epic offers a stylish and scathing parable about the dangerous ways that the powerful can exploit religious zeal to stay that way.

Based on the true story of the trial of Urbain Grandier, a Catholic priest who was executed in 1634 on charges of witchcraft, Russell adapted “The Devils” from John Whiting’s 1960 play and Aldous Huxley’s 1952 novel, The Devils of Loudun. Russell digressed stylistically from his source material, taking a contemporary approach
See full article at Indiewire »

The Boy Friend

It’s hard to think of a musical that would benefit more from a Blu-ray boost than Ken Russell’s kaleidoscopic all dancing, all singing send-up of theatrical clichés on the music hall stage, circa 1925. We’re just happy that the adorable Twiggy got to be put in a film like this, to be enjoyed forever. The Russell crowd is all aboard, led by Glenda Jackson and Murray Melvin. Gosh!

The Boy Friend

Blu-ray

The Warner Archive Collection

1971 / Color / 2:40 widescreen / 136 min. / Street Date February 21, 2017 / available through the WBshop / 21.99

Starring: Twiggy, Christopher Gable, Max Adrian, Bryan Pringle, Murray Melvin, Moyra Fraser, Georgina Hale, Sally Bryant, Vladek Sheybal, Tommy Tune, Brian Murphy, Graham Armitage, Antonia Ellis, Caryl Little, Glenda Jackson.

Cinematography: David Watkin

Film Editor: Michael Bradsell

Production Design: Tony Walton

Costumes: Shirley Russell

Written by: Ken Russell from the musical by Sandy Wilson

Produced and Directed by: Ken Russell

Some
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

The Devils (1971) | 2015 Beyond Film Festival Review

  • ioncinema
Sympathy for The Devils: The Suppression of Ken Russell’s Delirious, Incomparable Masterpiece

Despite the pronounced pedigree of its origins, Ken Russell’s glorious 1971 film The Devils is still mysteriously unavailable in the United States. An infamously plagued reception continues to usurp deserved attention away from its subversive content, though a growing legion of champions within the critical arena which had once sacrilegiously abandoned it has resulted in its growing recuperation.

Based, very loosely on a 1952 novel by literary giant Aldous Huxley depicting the downfall of 17th century French priest Urbain Grandier, it relates an incidence of hysteria and mob mentality run amok in the totalitarian paradigm of the Catholic Church. Russell, his project backed by none other than Warner Bros. studio itself, crafted an off-putting extravaganza of a film (shall we say, making Huxley’s text more Grandier) depicting events decried as pure blasphemy.

Wit unabashedly blunt sexual
See full article at ioncinema »

DVD Review - Spanish Fly (1976)

Spanish Fly, 1976.

Directed by Bob Kellett.

Starring Leslie Phillips, Terry-Thomas, Graham Armitage, Nadiuska, Frank Thornton and Sue Lloyd.

Synopsis:

On the Mediterranean island of Minorca, expat Sir Percy de Courcy buys 100,000 gallons of local wine, hoping to sell it at a vast profit. Unfortunately, the wine tastes foul, and when he asks his chauffeur to 'improve' the taste, a certain local ingredient finds its way into the bottles, turning it into a potent aphrodisiac!

Ding dong! Right, now that’s out the way, on to the business of reviewing Spanish Fly. During the 60s, as well as plenty of iconic spy flicks and decent thriller coming out of Britain, we also had the impish, playful exploits of the Carry On team. It was all slightly risqué, very tongue in cheek and just a bit cheeky. As the popularity of this sort of comedy waned and the 70s came into being
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

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