Madame de Dumeval, the Duke de Tesis and the Duke de Wand, libertines expelled from the court of Louis XVI, seek the support of the Duc de Walchen, German seducer and freethinker, lonely in a country where hypocrisy and false virtue reign.
1774, a few years before the French Revolution, somewhere between Potsdam and Berlin - Madame de Dumeval, the Duke of Tesis and the Duke of Wand, libertines expelled from the Puritan court of Louis XVI, sought the support of the legendary Duke of Walchen, a seducer and free thinker from Germany, alone in a country where hypocrisy and false virtue reigned. Their mission: to export libertinage to Germany, a philosophy of enlightenment based on the rejection of morality and authority but also, and above all, to find a safe place to continue their misguided games.Written by
Director Serra reworked the same material used for the film into a 45 minute video installation , Personalien, using two screens, which has been presented in 2019 at Madrid's Reina Sofia galleries. See more »
A Not-Very-Hard Day's Night
It's impossible to write spoilers for this film, since there is no plot to spoil. The film is just a record of an all-night orgy in a European forest around the time of the French Revolution. The participants are a group of international noblemen and women, and their servants.
It takes place at night in a dark forest, so you hardly see anything, and when you do see something, you're not sure what it is. Although the participants talk of wild erotic fantasies, what they actually do is pathetic, boring, and grim. Male masturbation, urinating, and getting whipped seem to be the extent of their perversions. You see several penises, none erect. Nobody seems to be having much fun at this orgy. Participating in it seems to be as unpleasant as watching it. Mostly, you see lots of people standing around doing nothing for long periods of time. It's supposed to be erotic, but the astonishing thing is: it's so boring!
The only reason I can think of for seeing this film is titillation. But you will see far more in a 3-minute clip on an internet porn site than you will find in this endless film. It's over two hours long, and feels more like 5. I give this film one star, for the costumes and makeup, which manage to make each male look uglier than the next. If being depraved and debauched offers such poor benefits, I think I will stay praved and bauched. Perhaps that's the director's intention.
\When the film started, the cinema was full. By the time it finished, there were only about 10 viewers left.
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