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The film explicitly states at the beginning that Amira Casar's sex scenes were done with a body double. Indeed, Casar allegedly told her male co-star Rocco Siffredi that she would not be having sex with him for the purposes of the film. Interestingly, Siffredi himself had a porn double for the opening gay fellatio scene. Despite being a porn star in real life and being very liberal in his sexual proclivities, gay man-on-man sex was apparently a step too far for the Italian. See more »
Interesting as always ... but not one of Breillat's best.
I am a great fan of Catherine Breillat. I have seen many of her films now and have enjoyed each and every one. She is an interesting film maker, always provocative, always prepared to push the boundaries of cinema. 'Anatomy of Hell' tho left me somewhat bored. It seems to me that with each new film, Breillat is becoming ever more compartmentalized. Here, her mission is to specifically explore the female sex organ and the affect this may (or may not have) on the male sexual and emotional psyche. The problem is, since she's chosen such a narrow subject (no pun intended) to examine, there really isn't enough material here to sustain an entire film ... even one with a brief running time as this (approx 80 mins).
Another downside also is that the film is totally reliant on the 2 leads, and frankly, Siffredi is just not up to the task. On the other hand, as always, Breillat casts an interesting female lead. Amira Casar, with her porcelain white skin, her voluptuous curves and her pitch black hair certainly holds ones interest. I get the feeling Breillat, when making the female casting choice, looks for younger and more glamorous versions of herself -- you'll rarely see a blonde.
There are the trademark 'pluses' of Breillat in this film tho. Her thoughtfully conceived set design for example ... her minimal editing .. sparse use of lighting. These all add up to good story telling techniques in my book. But alas, there is just not enough substance to the narrative to make this a good film.
I really do wonder where she is going to go from here ... ?
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