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18th-Century Period Piece Beloved Sisters Mixes the Pastoral and Sexually Playful

6 January 2015 9:00 PM, PST | Village Voice | See recent Village Voice news »

In a marvelously cheeky 1979 essay, the late, great Ellen Willis defined the difference between classical sex ("romantic, profound, serious...and typically feminine") and baroque sex ("pop, playful, funny...and stereotypically masculine"). So where shall we put German director Dominik Graf's Beloved Sisters, which tells the possibly semi-true story of the pact made by aristocratic sisters Caroline and Charlotte von Lengefeld (played by Hannah Herzsprung and Henriette Confurius) to peaceably share the same man, poet, playwright, and historian Friedrich Schiller (Florian Stetter)? Everything goes swimmingly for a time in this 18th-century idyll, and, particularly in the first section of the film, Graf brings a lush but discreet eroticism to the story. In the most »

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