Judge Daryl Loomis needs to stop doing this to himself.
The terrible secret of a night of sex and horror.
Tonight we look at Erotic Blackmail, which, of course, is everybody's favorite kind of blackmail. The trouble is that this utter obscurity from Eddy Naka (Le chevalier de la croupe) out of France from 1974 is cut to such a ridiculous degree that nearly any discussion of this so-called blackmail is excised, let alone that whole erotic part. What we're left with is a jumble of scenes and one insanely long strip club sequence to try to account for what actually happened in this movie, but I've got a job to do, and I'm going to do it, no matter how painful the whole process.
Valerie and Delphine (Valérie Boisgel, Naked Sex, and France Nicolas, Village Girls) are a couple of hot, naive girls looking for a good time. They think they've hit the jackpot when a couple of friends of theirs invite them to their country house for some rest and relaxation. What they don't know is that, when the girls arrive, there are more people there and all of them are looking to use the two girls as their sexual playthings, no matter what the girls actually want.
Clearly, Erotic Blackmail (or Le corps a ses raisons [The Body Has Its Reasons] if you believe the title card) was sourced from a heavily cut VHS version because, while I find running times mostly listed at 76 minutes, this version runs 65, and even that original number seems slight. Based on the nearly constant insinuation of rough, consent-free sex and the complete nonsense that serves as a plot, I would guess what we see here to be a full twenty minutes shorter than it ought to be, though I'm both complaining and I'm not.
I complain because there are people out there who actually like this stuff (myself included, at least under certain circumstances). It's a genuine shame that it isn't presented even close to complete. It's nobody's fault; the movie was considered lost for years and, in terms of cinematic value, probably deserves to have stayed that way. But anybody who decides to take the plunge and watch this sleaze-fest is going to walk away sorely disappointed.
I don't complain because it kept me from wasting twenty more minutes of my life than I had to, because Erotic Blackmail is absolutely awful in a way that a few extra scenes and the delivery on that promised rough stuff could never fix. Aside from the pair of fairly attractive lead actresses, there is no reason on Earth to watch this movie. There is next to no sex actually shown, the acting and direction are both terrible, not to re-mention that it doesn't make a lick of sense.
The DVD release from One 7 does Erotic Blackmail no favors, either. The aforementioned cuts are one thing, but the VHS that this DVD was "mastered" from had some severe vertical hold problems. I suspect that this wasn't a commercial video release, either, but something either taped off of television or a late-generation dub. The 1.33:1 image looks all-around awful, with poor colors and a rough look. The mono sound is just as poor, with a soft mix that, turned up to an audible volume, reveals a cacophony of background noise. No extras, either, making for a very poor release.
The less time spent with Erotic Blackmail, the better, so we're just going to leave it at this. If you are a truly obsessive fan of '70s European sex movies and must see every single one that comes out, then you are the one person that this disc is made to please. This is one of the worst pieces of garbage I've reviewed on this site, which includes plenty of things that I wouldn't recommend to an enemy. If this doesn't keep you from putting the disc into your machine, well have at it, but don't say I didn't warn you.
Leave me alone.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: One 7 Movies
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