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Kathryn Hahn



Charmed is a TV show based on the adventures of three sisters, The Charmed Ones. There were four main women from a sex appeal point of view, Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano and Rose McGowan. Kaley Cuoco spiced things up in the eighth and final season. There was no nudity but plenty that was very easy on the eye. These caps conclude the sixth season and were made in 2004.

Episode 19 Crimes & Witch Demeanors

Alyssa Milano

Rose McGowan

Anne Gleich and Isabella Jeschke in Der Dunkle Reigen (2017) in 720p

Franziska Walser in Nie mehr wie immer (2015) in 720p

Emmanuelle Beart in La Belle Noiseuse (1991) in 1080hd (part 2 of 3)

(Captures in yesterday's page)

You have to credit director Jacques Rivette for one thing - the man has a set of cojones the size of Luxembourg. This movie is 238 minutes long. Lawrence of Freakin' Arabia runs 228 minutes in the extended director's cut.

That takes some brass ones, right?

A four hour film can only be shown once per evening, so the box office potential is infinitesimal unless the film IS Lawrence of Arabia.

But there's more.

La Belle Noiseuse is not a sweeping epic like Lawrence, or a fantasy masterpiece like The Return of the King, or a lengthy multi-part historical narrative like Andrei Rublev, or a brilliant saga of friends from childhood to old age, like Once Upon a Time in America. It is essentially an artist in his studio with one model. He spends time getting her in precisely the correct pose, then a hand sweeps a brush over a canvas for five minutes, dabbing, swirling, inking. Repeat as needed - for hours. There isn't much more to it than that. In fact, that is the only thing happening for more than half of the film - two hours worth, which is essentially a full-length film of its own.

And the other half is not that much more lively.

The model's boyfriend and the artist's wife become jealous of the bond being formed between the painter and his subject. It is not a romantic relationship which threatens them. The painter is a decrepit old fella, and the model is the young and stunning Emmanuelle Beart. The fact that there is no courtship, however, doesn't mean that the relationship isn't close. A man and a naked woman working together for weeks, with the man trying to capture the essence of the woman's soul on canvas, can form a deeper intimacy than any lovers. His questions and his staring eyes probe her deeper than any penis could. It is this unique bond, and its all-consuming nature, that gets in the way of their relationships with others.

Many critics were dazzled by this film. It won the grand prize at Cannes. Roger Ebert gave it four stars and raved that it conveyed a complete understanding of the artistic process. He argued that the long sessions with the model were completely necessary to show the link between the artist and the subject in the artistic process, and that the long scenes which consisted solely of a hand painting on a canvas were completely necessary to allow the audience to experience directly in the creation of art from nothing.

Obviously, I am an aesthetically-challenged Philistine. I can understand the point he is making, and I guess I could even be persuaded to agree with it on a cerebral level, but I can't imagine how anyone could stay awake during this film. It's four hours long; there's very little dialogue; the minimal dialogue is in French with subtitles and seems inordinately pretentious; there's basically one set; there are basically only two important actors.

There is really only one element of the film which held my attention, and that was the constant naked presence of Beart. Given the length of this film, and the fact that she is completely naked for about half of its running time, Beart may have done more minutes of full nudity in this movie than any other legitimate actress in the history of cinema has done in a single film. It could be titled "Two Hours of Emmanuelle Beart posing stark naked," and have no fear of a false advertising claim. The only problem with that it is that the quantity kills the eroticism. Suppose you were married to a very beautiful woman and she walked around the house stark naked every minute of the day and night. How long do you think that would turn you on? Most likely, the quantity of the nudity would have a numbing effect on your libido, to the point where it would no longer be erotic, a phenomenon not unlike the lack of erections in nudist camps. Ms Beart, therefore, is stark naked constantly, and she is very beautiful, but the erotic value of that exposure is rapidly exhausted, and her naked body simply becomes one of the art supplies in the studio.

Julie Warner in Doc Hollywood (1991) in 1080hd

Lucia D Elia, Simonetta Allodi and Cinzia Monreale in Buio Omega (1979) in 1080hd




Glenda Jackson in Women In Love (1969) in 1080hd

In England, circa WW1, an artist named Gudrun (Glenda Jackson), and her schoolteacher sister Ursula (Jennie Linden) fall in love with a couple of fine gentlemen from the wealthy class (Alan Bates and Oliver Reed). The two relationships take very different directions. One couple learns to love each other in a traditional marriage. The other couple comes into conflict, struggling for domination. The foursome takes a Swiss honeymoon, during which Gudrun engages in an affair with a bisexual sculptor, causing her enraged husband (Reed) to flee into the mountains and wander about until he freezes to death. The other man (Bates) then philosophizes about the mystery of relations between men and women.

Women in Love was groundbreaking twice: once as a novel, once as the eponymous film.

The book, written in the WW1 era, presented the independence of women in the brightest light then possible in literature. Because the novel was filled with doubts about the sanctity and necessity of marriage, and because D.H. Lawrence treated women as highly sexual beings, D.H. Lawrence shocked his own time and led the way toward the sexual revolution of the 1920s.

The movie version played a similar role in the sexual revolution of the late 60s. It was daring in three respects:

  • There was an extended nude wrestling match between Alan Bates and Oliver Reed, complete with extensive frontal nudity from both of them. (This is the primary reason why the film is remembered today, if at all. Mention this film to someone from my era, and you'll see that glimmer of recognition when you say, "you know, it's the one where the two guys wrestle stark naked for five minutes".)
  • There were explicit sexual encounters on several occasions.
  • There was a bisexual man in make-up

Many of those once-powerful elements are no longer shocking by today's standards. The psychological and sexual aggressiveness of women is well accepted today, and the male/female scenes that shocked in 1969 are completely tame by our standards, so there's not much erotic stimulation for you heterosexual men. On the other hand, for those of you who like to look at naked men, Women in Love is the Holy Grail of male cinema nudity. The nude wrestling match between Bates and Reed still stands today as the zenith of male homoerotica in mainstream cinema. Although female nudity in mainstream films has gone far beyond what you see in this film, male nudity has not. Imagine, if you will, a five minute nude wrestling match between Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, in which every inch of their bodies is exposed to the camera in loving detail. Hard to picture that ever happening? Well, that would be the equivalent of what you see in this film!

Apart from the nude male wrestling match, you probably can't get a sense of how revolutionary this film was if you are younger than 45. Things have changed too much for you to be able to "feel" the context that existed then. The middle 60s were a time when film nudity was infrequent, seen most likely in foreign language films or softcore films, neither of which were shown in mainstream suburban theaters. Unlike today, when even the biggest stars (Kidman, Winslet, e.g.) strip down, you never saw major actors and actresses naked. This film broke the mold. Glenda Jackson, Alan Bates, and Oliver Reed were considered top-notch, Oscar-worthy stars, and this was considered an intellectual movie. D.H. Lawrence's work was considered serious literature. In fact, the pretentious, stuffy intellectualism of the characters' conversations is what made the nudity possible. After all, it was difficult for anyone but the most rigid moralist to condemn a movie which was praised by the Movie Academy and The New York Times. In the context of the times, the boring philosophical bits in the movie made the film acceptable for "good boys" to see. Even my mom thought it was OK for me to see this movie. My mom, for heaven's sake! For suburban dweebs like me, the artiness and lofty literary pedigree of the film meant that we could see some sex and breasts, assuming we were willing to endure boring speeches and naked guys.

In those days, it was a small price to pay.

It's a different story today, when you can see mainstream actresses naked without having to listen to male windbags or look at their nutsacks.

Oh, yeah ... the movie ....

Looks great. Beautiful, highly-saturated photography evoking the period, especially as it looked in the English countryside. There is one visually dazzling scene in which Oliver Reed comes upon drowned lovers entwined on the bed of a drained lake. The colors are beautiful and the transfer is nearly pristine.

Boring as hell. Lawrence's ideas seem to have been totally revolutionary when the novel was written, and were still fresh and topical in the late sixties, when the movie was made. Unfortunately most of the film is filled with philosophizing and pontificating about those very ideas, which now seem trite and sophomoric.