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Bali (1970)
"Incontro d'amore" (original title)

5.7
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Title: Bali (1970)

Bali (1970) on IMDb 5.7/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
John Steiner ...
Glenn
...
Daria
Umberto Orsini ...
Carlo
Petra Pauly ...
Brigitte
Johannes Schaaf ...
Bradford
Ettore Manni ...
Commissario di polizia
Lydiawati ...
Tillem
Tienpeka Blanco
Mila Kamilki
Fifi Young
Carla Mancini
Renato Spera
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ilona Staller ...
(added footage in 1975 version) (as Elena Mercury)
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Storyline

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Details

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Release Date:

29 December 1970 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Bali  »

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was first released in 1971 under the name Bali. As it did not have great success, the film was reedited. Scenes directed by Ugo Liberatore were replaced with new scenes directed by Paolo Heusch and filmed by operator Roberto d'Ettore Piazzolli. The new film was released under the name Incontro d'amore, See more »

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User Reviews

 
Unfortunately quite boring, but with some certain qualities
4 December 2014 | by (Munich, Germany) – See all my reviews

After 1973's "Malizia", when Laura Antonelli was at the height of her popularity, inventive producer Alfredo Bini dug out an old box office failure of hers, the 1970 production "Bali". But he didn't just re-release it as it was, but shot about half an hour of new scenes. They serve as a framing background to the 1970 material, and apparently, the new version was very successful due to the Laura Antonelli craze. Unfortunately this means that the only version available today is the 1975 release, and what was cut from the 1970 version is probably lost forever.

Two problems are obvious: The 1970 version, at least what's left of it, is not really good to begin with. And the 1975 additions are pointless and boring for the most part.

So you have photographer and journalist Carlo (Emmanuelle 2&3's Umberto Orsini) working on a book about the island of Bali, while he is assisted by the introverted dropout Glenn (John Steiner). Then Daria, Carlo's wife, played by Laura Antonelli, arrives for a visit and she is quickly fascinated by Glenn's weird state of mind. Glenn is grasped by the island's folklorist and social ways, dabbles in black magic and voodoo, and is deeply depressed because his guru friend is soon to die and does not speak to anybody anymore. Daria's fascination turns to love , Carlo gets jealous, and Glenn wants to die...

Well, it's a classical love triangle served here, but it just never gets any momentum. It's hard to relate to any of the characters as they act so completely strange and incomprehensible. Daria falls for Glenn by just staring at him, while he mostly ignores her and she's making constantly scenes because she can't understand what drives him. Carlo is proud of his "open" marriage to Daria that allows them both to cheat on each other, but turns jealous when he finds out about her feelings for Glenn, who on the other hand makes it crystal-clear he doesn't care for Daria and just wants to die. It all just doesn't work. You are treated to highly sophisticated discussions about island polygamy, frog statues, betel nuts, life, death and all the exorcisms and black magic rituals in between. The script wants to feign depth that's not really there.

If it weren't for the wonderful scenery, you would be bored very quickly. But truly the production managed to find great spots, viewpoints and access to genuine, sometimes quite disgusting events on the island. This is supported by the fitting soundtrack.

Speaking of the actors, it's Steiner who can convince the most, since his character is the actual key of the story. Orsini relies on his playboy looks, while Laura, I hate to say it, performs miserably and doesn't seem to care at all. At least there are some sequences of her wearing a wonderful black bikini. I admit I could watch her running around like that probably for the rest of my life.

So let's speak about the re-cut, about thirty new minutes mostly with Orsini. It clocks in at 90 minutes, so you can guess an equal amount of the 1970 version had to go. It's five years later and Carlo reports to the police that he has killed Daria. Then he tells the police officer the whole Bali story, and how he recently met her again. For the most part, it is totally boring, and it continuously interrupts the actual story, along with hard, noticeable cuts on the 1970 scenes. It causes considerable plot-holes. For instance, Daria meets Glenn for the first time at the airport and on the ride to the village they talk briefly and superficially. Then all of a sudden she tells Carlo how much Glenn fascinates her - something is missing here...

Well, at least the producers realized what was definitely missing, too, in the 1970 version - sex and crime. To replace Laura, who had certainly better things to do at that point, they brought in Ilona Staller, so the nudity was secured, and for the gore, they just let Carlo become crazy. Ridiculous, but what would you expect. Antonelli criticized the re-release fiercely, by the way.

Overall this film just wants too much and delivers too little. If you are happy to see young and beautiful Laura Antonelli, you won't be too disappointed. I wouldn't recommend "Bali" to anyone but hardcore Eurocult fans who may just get enough enjoyment out of Laura, the visuals, style and score to outweigh the weak and boring plot.


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