Young Lady Chatterley (1977) Poster

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Seventies soft-core was so much better than that which comes out now
smatysia12 May 2000
Seventies soft-core was so much better than that which comes out now. YLC had good photography, good locations, mostly acceptable acting, and decent direction. Interesting was the casting, such as the Flashback Gardener, who was not exactly a buff stud. Also, Harlee McBride was cute, rather than beautiful, something that was actually rather refreshing. An actress playing this role now would have sported about ten pounds of silicone where McBride was proud to show her natural self. Her character seemed excessively slutty to me, but OK, she's a Chatterley, and OK it was the seventies, and OK that is sort of the whole point of the show. Most of the sex scenes were fairly hot. some minor characters and plot points were a bit ridiculous, but that goes with the genre. Grade: B
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Unapologetic soft-core fun.
Robert Morgan26 September 1999
Unlike Lady Chatterley's Lover, Young Lady Chatterley doesn't pretend to be a high-class literary adaptation. Barring the short scenes taken from the book (when Cynthia is reading the found diary of the original Lady) the whole film is just an excuse to show the tom-boyish but attractive Harlee McBride in various soft-core sex scenes.

The funny thing is, the movie is pretty good. Unlike most of the cliched junk churned out for the made-for-video market, YLC had to survive as a theatrical release (being the dawn of the VCR age, it wasn't a given that a movie would be released on home video, but a rarity.) So, YLC- like Emmanuelle before it- has a quality rarely seen in the late-nite cable soft-core porn market. The cinematography is good, if a bit aged, and the actors and actresses actually *act*; it may not be as good as a normal Hollywood production, but it's definitely better than most in the "erotica" genre.

An interesting thing about YLC is the fact that the scenes from Lady Chatterley's Lover are brand new; they aren't from the Sylvia Kristel movie, but were shot specifically for YLC, with a new actor and actress. (I honestly would have preferred to see a LCL with these people; I find Sylvia Kristel and Nicholas Clay to make one unappealing couple.)

Unfortunately, for today's market, I'm afraid that YLC is "too lame"- it's very tame by modern standards and could probably be released with an "R". A shame, because this movie has more class and a better cast than most anything now.
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Delightful soft port with a very pretty lady chatterly
pbhowmick5 March 2001
It was such a pleasant break from the heavy and siliconised soft porn that you get to see on the cable these days. It has the right blend of a decent storyline, ok acting and right amount of nudity. What I liked best about the film was Lady Chatterly, you could relate her to a real life character. Her innocence in the beginning and then her transformation into the hot and over-sexed Lady looks so real. The sex scenes are beautiful and not pretentious like the porn films these days, no excessive moaning and groaning. The buildup in the story to the orgy scene in the climax is very good. I recommend this movie to everybody who's sick of the meaningless and tasteless platter of softcore films availabe these days. Fall in love with Lady Chatterly!
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Still hot and sexy after 24 years.
airguitarplayer2 December 2001
I went out and bought this movie on DVD and was very very pleased to my senses to see that this copy is the original, uncut, unedited, copy that used to come on Cinemax and Showtime Late Night. It contains 2 movie trailers, a scrapbook of photos from the movie, and a Biography on Harlee McBride. The print still looks fresh but it still needs some more work for future releases. There a few scratches in the film that could use a digital erasing and the sound could use a Dolby Digital 5.1 upgrade. But untill then go out and buy this copy because it is still hot and sexy after 24 years.
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I love this movie !
nocturnalwatcher24 September 2000
Young Lady Chatterly is a hot 1970s Softcore Porno Classic. In the 1980s when it was released on Video Tape the movie was censored beyond belief. I think in this day and age of open sexuality I think this movie should re released on DVD in an Uncensored Uncut Directors Cut Version. The sequel was cheesy but the movie was still hot. I saw the movie on Cinemax but I believe there is more to the movie than we are lead to believe.
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Not the first soft-core I saw, but one of the best.
xenophile20022 November 2009
I have enjoyed a few of the European soft-core movies, like _Boarding School_ with Natasha Kinski. They manage to be sexy without the whole "we have to make sex dirty, vulgar, and immature" thing that all too many American soft-core movies have. _Porky's_, anybody? Well, this movie is American, and it manages to have that same vibe I've enjoyed from our friends across the Pond. The story actually exists, and while it isn't one of those multi-faceted stretch-the-brain plot lines, it is a plot line. The sex is more playful than vulgar, and sometimes it's even sweet. Yeah, I said sweet.

I gave it eight stars instead of seven, because another reviewer took a star away for the bathtub scene between Cynthia and Jeanette. I happen to LIKE that scene, so I put a star back for it. I love the way Jeanette sees right through Cynthia's attempt to be a snob and resolves the problem through pleasure. That Jeanette just radiates sexual heat.
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A curious young beauty inherits an estate
Mazoon-28 December 2000
Harlee McBride is wonderful as the curious, lusty Cynthia Chatterley. In this movie she is reminiscent of a more pure version of Marilyn Chambers in Insatiable. The 2 movies have a similiar plot although set in different eras. While there is plenty of erotica it is much classier than what you will see in much of today's porn with actresses such as Jenny Jameson. This is a great piece of work that you can enjoy with your sig other and you will want to watch the whole flick and will be left with a burning passion when it's over.
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Entertaining enough
Gislef16 April 1999
This first entry into the Chatterly "franchise" (??) is entertaining enough. Mildly amusing in spots, with attractive people wandering around and having lots of soft-porn sex. It seems curiously old-fashioned compared to much late-night cable fare, but it's just light-hearted enough to be enjoyable.
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sullygw2 February 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This film combines the rich arousal of the written erotic word with cinematography. As she reads the diary you can see and witness her arousal...

The innocence combined with decadence is just too much for some I think! Great acting considering the genre.

In the scene where she asked the gardener to sodomize her so she can experience it with him - a rather rugged chap - wow!

We witness the coming of age of a young woman in so many ways at the hand of her AUNT! I was thoroughly entertained. Sadly, there are very few films that rely on mental arousal in this day of hard-core porn.
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First in a series for late night viewing.
Michael O'Keefe2 May 2000
Cynthia, a very pretty young woman inherits a huge mansion and discovers her Aunt's diary detailing numerous sexual escapades. Now her own lusty adventures begin.

Harlee McBride plays the eye opening Cynthia. Also in the cast are Peter Ratray and Ann Michelle. Very strong sexual content for 1977.
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The Happy Hooker goes to Downton Abbey
The_Film_Cricket22 January 2014
Warning: Spoilers
There exists inside of me a certain level of affection for clever bawdy comedy. Not dirty jokes, not the kinds of comedy that comes from movies like 'American Pie' or the god-awful 'Porky's' but the sort of bawdiness that comes from European films, The Benny Hill Show, Mel Brooks' better films and the animated shorts of Bob Clampett.

'Young Lady Chatterley' belongs on that list. Like 'Emmanuelle' it belongs to a very short list of 70s sex farces that walked the line between titillation and comedy and managed to succeed as a tastefully tasteless movie. Eliminating the element of playfulness and fun from a movie whose primary function is sex means that you eliminate the danger of your movie looking foolish. I prefer movies that don't play it safe. Happily there's a mixture here of sex for fun and sex that makes an attempt to be serious. You come away appreciating both equally.

The movie has become an underground classic among those who like sex in the movies but like to keep it soft core. Hard core pornography gets really old, really fast. It's also very limited. 'Young Lady Chatterley' has a very limited connection with D.H. Lawrence's 'Lady Chatterley's Lover' but I prefer this one because it's more farce than anything else. There are things here that would have made Lawrence proud, as a matter of fact. That doesn't extend to the entire enterprise, just a bit here and a bit there.

The movie stars Harlee McBride (later known as Mrs. Richard Belzer) as Cynthia Chatterley, Lady Chatterley's granddaughter who buys her grandmother's estate, finds her diary in a closet and begins to read up on ol' grams diddlings with a farmhand. This opens Cynthia's own sexual awareness and she begins the process of finding things to do around the house – like the serving staff. In truth, Ms. McBride is lovely especially in various states of undress and we appreciate the moments when that loveliness is on display.

There are only a handful of actors in the movie that she doesn't have sex with. I'm not complaining simply because the sex scenes are not filmed that boring Hollywood tradition of having a lot of close-ups in slow-motion. The scenes are athletic, robust and far more titillating and leave a great deal to the imagination.

Those scenes are nicely photographed showing and as much skin as possible while suggesting more than they really show. The scenes range from hilarious to serious but never with a sense of exploitation and never with the laminated dullness of a Playboy video. 'Young Lady Chatterley' is like curling up with a really trashy novel and smiling to yourself even when you shouldn't.

*** (of four)
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Very Likable Flick
historian6411 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is very likable. Harley Mc Bride looks good and has a very earnest quality about her. What a pity she didn't break into the mainstream, as I think she could even carry a weekly series.

Mc Bride's earnestness works well when Cynthia discovers her aunt's old diary and she reads up on auntie's sexcapades back in the day. She's aroused and wonders starts wondering what it would be like for her.

What gives this a 7 instead of an 8 is the bathtub scene with Cynthia and Jeanette, as it seems a bit contrived. It seems odd that a film with sexually explicit themes would need a have set up a lesbian scenes like that. Sign of the times, I guess. Oh well, still better than anything on After Hours these days.
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When did a lush background replace a decent plot?
Andy (film-critic)25 December 2009
The world of cinema does come in threes. For the past two weeks, films have come through my viewing palettes that have befouled my overall excitement for cinema. In a standard rut, one hopes that these final two films will prove otherwise, but keeping my fingers crossed will not be helpful. From nurses in love and an Americanized Harvey Keitel, nothing could have prepared me for the upcoming triumph known as "Young Lady Chatterley". Tagged as the first "X-rated movie to touch you where it counts … your heart", one pleads with the DVD box to please allow some semblance of a story to push through the "romps" on the grass, but alas, my voice went unheard. This entry into the world of D.H. Lawrence's classic story proves that the naughty bits do make a film, and the late 70s were not afraid to experiment. With lush backgrounds, deepened British accents, and the downtrodden theme of finding an unbridled love free of boredom, "Young Lady Chatterley" attempts to mask the honesty that it is a softcore erotica film. It attempts to say that with these other elements thrown into the mix, we are not just your normal late-night darkened viewing, but instead something of some class and/or cult standing. As a reviewer of this film, one must look at both elements to examine if this film accomplished what it set out to do. How was production value? Was there a determined story? How were our characters? Because it is softcore erotica, should it not be placed within these same rules? While others will argue "no", "Young Lady Chatterley" is a film, and how does it rank among other films of this nature? Not to disappoint, but poorly.

Classical England would ask, "Doth a scenery make strong erotica?" While it seems the general reviewer of this film would agree, I had trouble seeing the production value or lush scenery in "Young Lady Chatterley". There wasn't anything that stood out, minimal sweeping wide shots, over-lighting throughout, and that soft camera filter that made the 70s what they are today were staples within this film. If anything, they were overused to the point of obscuring the actor's work. Leaning further towards the notion of softcore cinema than actual plot-induced cinema, we can look at our actors, to see what their production value was within this 1977 classic. Harlee McBride, our lead and lady-in-waiting, begins bored, with both life and obviously this role, but as soon as she steps on our twice-removed-once-loved-Chatterley estate, the love and life begin to pour out of her - literally! With everyone imaginable, she shares herself and takes into form an unrecognizable character. Was she married to Phillip? Was she just engaged? How did it go from Phillip to every person at the estate? The transition, like her character, just didn't fit. She lacked that sexual manipulation that was needed to make this film into something more than just the overabundance of love. There was no change in her or her character, we were handed nothing to begin with - and just expected to believe everything that occurred. Poor direction by Alan Roberts lead to disinterested characters. Not only with Harlee McBride, but also with everyone else. The burly young gardener, the maids, the obviously oblique servants, everyone invited to the finale cake party - just seemed disjointed from the rest of the film.

With no strong characters, a plot that left nothing to the imagination or hope, there really was nothing left of "Young Lady Chatterley". In fact, I am rather surprised that the Lawrence estate allowed the name to be used for this film. What did stand out, as the only creativity within a mile, was the surrounding story of the first Lady Chatterley and her first run in with the gardener. The character depth, the excitement of young love, and the passion that could not be surprisingly were all there for these brief sub-scenes. The connection between the original lovers vs. that of the new "Young" version, was surprisingly different. The first had purpose and meaning, while the other was just softcore dribble. The conversations between the first Lady Chatterley and the gardener seemed responsive and open for discussion, giving at least one purpose to this film - while the rest, well, was utterly disappointing.

Overall, another milestone has been hit. The third bad film in a row provides me with an opportunity to watch my first adult classic, but let's me down entirely. The sub-stories was creative, but the rest of the film was meant for one sole purpose. "Young Lady Chatterley" may have been pioneering for the time, but over the decades, it has just been forgotten and replaced. There is a way to create a story like this and actually be artistic, but it was ignored in this film. This wasn't a cult classic, it was just cinematic garbage. The story didn't work, our characters were merely naked, and no development to anything was created. While others boast the lush scenery as being a positive mark on this film, it just wasted time. The soft-lens treatment of this film blurred away anything interesting from this film, and delivering another cinematic flop.

Grade: * 1/2 out of *****
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