Marquis de Sade's Justine (1969)
"Marquis de Sade: Justine" (original title)

R  |   |  Drama, Horror  |  3 April 1969 (Italy)
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Ratings: 5.4/10 from 990 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 23 critic

A woman named Justine is used and abused by all manner of perverts, freaks and sexual deviants.


(as Jess Franco)


(as Peter Welbeck)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Rosemary Dexter ...
Carmen de Lirio ...
Madame de Buisson
Du Harpin
Gustavo Re ...
Madame Dusbois
Serena Vergano ...
José Manuel Martín ...
Mike Brendel ...
Harald Leipnitz ...
Horst Frank ...
Marquis de Bressac
Angel Petit ...
Marquise de Bressac


A woman named Justine is used and abused by all manner of perverts, freaks and sexual deviants.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


An erotic fantasy horror from the tortured pen of The Marquis de Sade.


Drama | Horror


R | See all certifications »



Release Date:

3 April 1969 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Deadly Sanctuary  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Italian) | (2002 video release) (uncut) | (uncut)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Italian censorship visa # 53569 delivered on 1-4-1969. See more »


The sound we hear on the soundtrack (at c. 26 minutes) is clearly the spanking of bare flesh but the film shows that the blows only strike clothed buttocks. See more »


Version of Poor Cecily (1974) See more »

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User Reviews

Worth viewing, but it's not the film Franco intended
4 February 2003 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

'Marquis de Sade's 'Justine'' (1968) is easily Jess Franco's most accomplished film, esp. from a technical standpoint, backed by the biggest budget he would ever have. Rich, brilliant colors, skin aplenty, a few perversities, and strange performances from Klaus Kinski, Jack Palance and Mercedes Mccambridge make for an entertaining but relatively tame Franco outing. To boot, Jack Palance's performance ranks as possibly the most bizarre ever seen on film. The dvd includes a revealing 20-minute 'making of' documentary featuring an extensive, contemporary interview with director Franco, and he doesn't hold back. Franco states that Palance was sauced during the entire shoot, drinking red wine all day, each day, starting around 7a.m.

Kinski's role (as de Sade) was originally handed to Orson Welles, but once Welles read the script, he claimed that he simply could not play the part because it included scenes of erotica. In reality, Welles would have had to do a scene with several totally naked women, and this may have made him uncomfortable and nervous. Interestingly, the de Sade character has no lines, and Kinski's scenes are just a bunch of cutaways of him sitting/pacing in a prison cell, mentally tortured, trying to write 'Justine'.

Franco intended to create an explicitly nasty, masochistic film faithful to de Sade's writing; however, according to Franco, he was forced into a watered-down, `Snow-White-lost-in-the-woods' direction because of the producer's decision to cast Tyrone Power's daughter, Romina Power, in the title role. `She was a passenger, wandering around,' Franco scoffed. `She was like a piece of furniture. It was as if I was making Bambi 2'. The role was intended for Rosemary Dexter, who appears in the film in a lesser role.

Franco's version of 'Justine' is not as grim or as depressing as Chris Boger's 'Cruel Passion' (1977), starring Koo Stark, but it's also not as nasty or as perverse. Too bad for Franco fans. --- david ross smith

23 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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