EL FRANCONOMICON / I'M IN A JESS FRANCO STATE OF MIND

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COMING FROM MONDO MACABRO: April 2017!

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Three films in HD plus a CD! Thanks to Cinema Arcana:

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Coming this April from our friends at Mondo Macabro — a Limited Edition set featuring HD upgrades for two of Jess Franco’s more twisted efforts from his Robert de Nesle period, plus some new surprises!

First up is the much requested Blu debut of Franco’s COUNTESS PERVERSE (1974). Restored to its director’s cut and scanned from the original negatives, the film is a sort of Most Dangerous Game by way of De Sade, as swingin’ couple Bob and Moira pick up beach bunnies from the sunny shores by day, and spend their nights seducing the same. However, things take a dark turn when their new friends are introduced to the Count & Countess Zaroff, who have their own idea of a good time. Showcasing great turns from Franco regulars Robert Woods, Howard Vernon, Alice Arno, and, of course, Lina Romay, COUNTESS PERVERSE is a disturbing mixture of sex and death, and has long been a fan favorite, for good reason — its legendary nude hunt is easily one of the most iconic sequences from the director’s vast filmography. Definitely one not to miss.

The second feature here is HOW TO SEDUCE A VIRGIN (aka Plaisir à trois, 1974). The Countess de Bressac returns home from a forced nuthouse stint, the court-appointed result of castrating her former plaything. Greeted by her hunchbacked gardener, mute maid and enabling husband, she immediately retreats to her dungeon, surrounded by human statues formed from past conquests. Her spouse proposes a new game, involving the seduction of the wealthy heiress next door, but when things don’t go as expected… Another of Franco’s examinations of the perversion of innocence, PLAISIR A TROIS is likewise one of the provocateur’s darker efforts, and it’s presented here scanned from the original negatives looking better than ever.

With these titles being previously released by Mondo Macabro on DVD, the company’s obviously porting over their existing special features, including a pair of excellent analyses by Murderous Passions: The Delirious Cinema of Jess Franco author Stephen Thrower, and great chats with COUNTESS PERVERSE actor Robert Woods and HOW TO SEDUCE A VIRGIN screenwriter Alan Petit.

But wait, there’s more! This collection also contains the English-friendly disc debut of SEXY NATURE (1974), the complete 101-minute Adults Only variant of COUNTESS PERVERSE! Throw away those bootlegs; as with the other films here, it’s presented in HD from the original film elements — no tape inserts or anything of the sort.

Guess what? That’s not all! The outfit is additionally including a bonus CD featuring Blue Phantom’s 1971 psych-rock classic DISTORTIONS, containing several of the memorable tracks that popped up in both COUNTESS PERVERSE and the director’s SINNER: THE SECRET DIARY OF A NYMPHOMANIAC (1973). If you’re a fan of those films’ soundtracks, this is an incredible inclusion, and one I guarantee will be in heavy rotation at the ol’ Arcana HQ. Last, but certainly not least, there’s a printed booklet with liner notes from MM’s own Pete Tombs.

This Region A set is limited to 1,000 numbered copies, and will be an exclusive to Mondo Macabro’s webstore (mondomacabro.bigcartel.com). Pre-orders are set to go live Friday, March 3rd, with a ship date in early April. Pricing is expected to be set at $45 with free shipping, which may seem a bit high, but the company is really attempting to give Franco fans the kind of release they’ve been asking for, and it should be a great addition to our collections — whether or not you think it’s worth it is up to you. Viva la Franco!

(Note: I censored the cover art for Facebook; the actual release will be untouched.)

Written by Robert Monell

28 febrero 2017 a 1:42 AM

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