Photographer O's lover takes her to a Château, where she is, like other women there, naked, humiliated by whipping, sexual abuse by men etc. When O leaves, her lover gives her to his much older step-brother.
The beautiful O is taken by her boyfriend, Rene, to a bizarre retreat, where she is trained in bondage and sexual perversion. Rene discharges a personal debt by transferring possession of O to his step-brother, Sir Stephen...Written by
The U.S. English-dubbed print is missing 6 scenes and runs approximately 8 minutes shorter than the original French version. However, the missing footage appears to have been removed for pacing reasons rather than any risqué content. The edited scenes are as follows:
After Rene picks up O from the chateau, the U.S. print cuts directly to O's first photo shoot, whereas in the French version, Rene brings her back to his apartment and shows her around, then expresses dissatisfaction with her training and behavior.
Immediatley following the above mentioned scene, O is left alone in the apartment. Rene phones and tells her to get undressed and wait for his arrival. She strips and is kneeling on the floor as he enters. Note: a few frames of the shot with her kneeling can be seen in the U.S. print just before it cuts to O's photo shoot.
After O's first whipping at Anne-Marie's house, the U.S. print cuts directly to the scene with Therese fixing O's hair next to a vase of red roses. In the French version, O's first whipping is followed by a scene in which the women have lunch in the garden.
Immediately following the above mentioned scene, the French version also contains a scene of O waking up in the middle of the night when she hears crying in the stairwell. She gets up to investigate, as do some of the other women, and they find a distraught Therese, who wants to leave their submissive environment.
After O and Jacqueline go for a walk on the beach, the U.S. print cuts directly to the scene where O meets Sir Stephen before their boating trip. In the French version, the walk on the beach is longer as O spots Therese climbing out of a fishing boat. She rushes over to greet her and Jacqueline immediately becomes jealous and asks O if she ever slept with Therese.
Immediately following the above mentioned scene, O, Therese and Jacqueline have lunch together. Jacqueline is still feeling jealous and makes a few snide remarks at Therese, who retaliates by purposely spilling tea on Jacqueline's lap.
I admit I know little about the S+M/B+D lifestyle, but if this is any indication, it must be kind of like being in a bad European "art" film. This is one movie that truly does not deserve its notorious reputation(either in the negative or positive sense). It's just your typical silly and pretentious 70's Eurotrash. It is slightly less boring than the director's previous "Emmannuelle" (1974) but only slightly. The lead (and only conceivable reason to watch this nonsense) is Corrine Clery,who was later a second-string Bond girl eaten by vicious dobermans in "Moonraker". Clery spends most of the movie naked and being whipped by various men and women. This certainly sounds pretty sordid, but the movie (tastefully?) never shows the whip actually hitting her. And though she is almost constantly being flogged, there never seems to be a mark on her on her perpetually on-display body. She is also passed around by various men, but the sex scenes are even more circumspect than the whipping scenes. I'd enjoy watching Clery doing anything naked(mowing the lawn, painting a fence, digging a garden), but there's just nothing especially exciting here. Mostly, the movie consists of cheesy dialogue and idiotic libertine philosophizing. I don't know if you have to be a sadist to enjoy it, but you definitely have to be a masochist to sit through it.
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