Jungfrauen-Report (1972) Poster

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Funny Docu/Mockumentary
suspiria1031 January 2004
Part documentary, part mockumentary, part sexploitation, all Jess Franco. Well sort of. Tucked in between stock footage is a quasi-documentary about the loss of sexual innocence. Starting in the Garden of Eden we are taken on a voyage around the world that covers various rites of passage and cultures deflowering of the virgin. The film sits precariously in a mixture of genres, but sits comfortly in the mondo genre best. Told in a series of vignettes you see everything ranging from native stock footage inserts to footage shot to titillate the masses. Very tongue in cheek, I wouldn't call this a serious study but I'll give Jess credit for trying to pass it off as one. Good or bad is irrelevant when talking about a Franco film. Franco mixes the good, the bad, the beautiful and the ugly…usually in the same film. This one appears to be rather obscure and its' occasional funny moment will most likely appeal to Francophiles everywhere.
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Not very erotic, but certainly interesting Franco film
lazarillo4 August 2008
This is one of Franco's strangest films (which is saying A LOT) in that he seems to be combining various genres, each of which he had previously only dabbled in. Most obviously this is a take off of the popular German "Schulmadchen Report" films. Franco uses at least two of the same nubile actresses from the series and the same "man (and woman) on the street"-style interview filler. The interviews are even more obviously fake and (intentionally?) comical than usual--the interviewer goes around asking young women if they are virgins, for instance.

Franco also pays homage to (i.e. rips-off) the Italian "mondo" films, however, by purporting to show "sexual practices" around the world. These are even more obviously fake than in the mondo movies--one "tribe" he films is surprisingly racially integrated, no doubt because Franco couldn't find enough black actors. Strangely enough, the "rituals" he films all involve "do-it-yourself" de-virginizing by the "virgins" themselves while the "tribe" all watches. I'm no anthropologist, but it seems unlikely that any real primitive tribe would treat such a thing so frivolously (more likely Franco is exploring some bizarre personal fetish). Then Franco gives up all pretense of documentary verite by going back in time to show scenes from the "Garden of Eden", and a random scene from the Middle Ages where a corrupt priest exacts "tribute" from a virgin the night before she is to be wed. This last scene in particular evokes the Italian religious sexploitation films of the era (i.e, the decamerotici, the "nunsploitation" films) with its combination of catholicized perversion and supposedly serious moral commentary on the real historical abuses of the Church.

While this movie is entertaining in a warped way, what it really isn't is erotic. The virgin bride from the medieval tales is very attractive, but she goes to bed with a disgusting old man (who comically proves impotent). The ONLY real potentially erotic scene is a modern "schulmadchen report"-type vignette where a young virgin comes home from an unsatisfactory encounter with her inexperienced boyfriend to find her mother has locked her out, and ends up losing her virginity in a much more satisfying manner to her experienced next door neighbor. These two vignettes both feature very appealing frauleins recognizable from the German series. Also, in the cast are Franco regulars like Christina Von Blanc and Britt Nichols. Leave it to Franco though to take such mouth-watering beauties and such salacious material and make something so uniquely bizarre and (generally) unerotic. It's definitely interesting though.
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An offensive and dangerous film that never should have been made
Warning: Spoilers
"Jungfrauen-Report" or "Virgin Report" is a West German German-language film from 1972, so it will have its 25th anniversary next year. The director here is Jesús Franco, who once again goes with the pseudonym of Jess Frank, the German version of his name. The title already tells us what this film is about. It is similar to the "Schulmädchenreport" movies as it implies an academic and scientific approach, but nothing of it seems true and this is not only a fitting description for the series I just mentioned, but also for this film here. With one crucial difference: This film here is not a harmless little film about teenagers exploring their sexuality. This is a film that includes all kinds of peoples, cultures and religions. And what it depicts is extremely offensive to several of these. Not because it actually exposes them for being barbarians, but because it tells audiences they are barbarians with the way it depicts them and their customs despite the fact that nothing (or almost nothing) you see in here is true and fact-based. You have to see this film entirely as a work of fiction. Franco uses fake science background in order to arouse his audiences sexually. I don't mind most of his other works and the sexual references in there, also the violent ones, but here he steps on really dangerous terrain. Touching a sensitive subject like virginity and how it is seen and perceived around the world requires a proper scientific analysis and interviews with people who have first.hand experience. There are no interviews in here. It is sexploitation of the worst kind and as different it may be compared to Franco's other works, as despicable is as well the approach he gave this subject here. I highly recommend not to watch it. I am really a fan of free speech and opinion and I rarely support the bans of films, even if it is about racism, but for this film here I make an exception. It would have been best if all existing copies of the movie had been burnt.
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