3rd: The Postman Always Rings Twice
This has such a resonant tune to it, that even if you haven`t seen the movie yet, you still feel like you know what it is all about, after all, we are all familiar with the postman jokes. How many of you would be curious enough, to get to the root of them? Considering this movie is also a film noir, you don`t have to worry about getting bored.
The movie we`re talking about here could be called the second edition of “The Postman Always Rings Twice”. It had already achieved success as a book and a movie by 1964, and luckily, Bob Rafelson saw potential of reviving the plot, but this time in the age of colour movie and less constrained censorship.
The result is a more rough and explicit version of this captivating story of lust, adultery and murder.
A unique storyline
This movie might leave you off with a bugging sense of déjà-vu. A married rich woman falls in love with the scruffy poor guy and she wants to have it all together so she plots with her lover to make the troublesome husband disappear from the picture. This sounds like the age old story but even spelt out like this, the plot still has an alluring ring to it.
Frank Chambers is a drifter that happens to stop at a rural restaurant one night, a dinner operated by the young and beautiful Cora Smith and owned by her (obviously) much older husband. Being offered a job by the latter, he decides to linger around a while longer, long enough for him to start a steamy affair with the young wife.
After spending years married to a man she didn`t love, Cora decides to take her fate into her own hands, wanting to keep at the same time both her newly found love, as well as the dinner she wanted ardently to personally own. They eventually succeed with their plan to dispose of her husband, but since there is rarely such thing as a perfect crime, Cora soon gets is put on trial for murder.
At this point you might expect them to get caught and the movie to end with them being taken away in a police car, as it so often happens with detective movies, but feel encouraged to give this movie a chance to surprise you, and it will be worth your time!
The old one versus the new one
When there are two versions of the same movie, you can expect a bloodshed. But this movie makes it a bit easier for you to decide in whose favor to vote. Rafelson did a splendid job in his adaptation of the plot, giving a special focus to the characters and their relationship. Lana Turner was absolutely beautiful in the older version, but Jessica Lange topped that and delivered a performance that is to kill for.
The momentous hot chemistry between her and Jack Nicholson offered us a peak into one of the most explicit sex scenes ever represented in a mainstream film. The purely raw sensuality will just make your world spin.
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2nd: Body Heat
You can tell from the title, that this movie isn`t known for concealing information from its viewers, but it`s more than just the torrid love affair that will take your breath away while watching this movie. You might be expecting a simple erotic movie, but at the same time Body Heat is one of the greatest homage to film-noir ever.
Kasdan, the mind behind this masterpiece, claimed he “wanted this film to have the intricate structure of a dream, the density of a good novel, and the texture of recognizable people in extraordinary circumstances.” Did he succeed? Most definitely yes.
He manages to keep us distracted from the pretty rudimentary plot and with each time you re-view this movie, you`ll notice more and more details that he hid for us. There couldn`t have been a pick for this job than him, a man who is just madly in love with telling the story.
Into the world of noir
The atmosphere created is terrific. A small town in Florida, ravaged by a summer heat wave ; you can imagine how this type of weather takes its tolls on the community. We have a scruffy lawyer, Ned Racine, who has fallen into the bad habit of not being able to keep his hands off his female clients and the beautiful brunette he runs across one night, Matty Walker.
Since she refuses him, it`s not hard to imagine just how motivational this is for Ned, and his efforts pay off soon enough, when they begin a steamy and deeply erotic affair. Now what could stand in the way of their happy ending?
Nothing more or less than Matty`s husband. She wanted to keep both her new found lover as well as her husband`s money and what better way to do it than to get rid of the inconvenient husband?
Reasons why you should watch it
We`re all familiar with the crime of passions and what happens next : corruption, suspicion, betrayal and so on. But the core of the whole movie is the relationship between William Hurt and Kathleen Turner, or as we know them, Ned and Matty.
There isn`t anything but eroticism between those two and what better way to prove it than one of the highest parts of this movie, when Ned is so unable to control his desire and lust for her, he takes a chair and breaks the window that was separating them just to be able to touch her.
This is just about as sexy as it can go, in a very alpha approach of it. And despite all the erotic sex scenes, you`re not going to watch it for its dirtiness.
This was Kathleen Turner`s debut in the cinema and she had clearly stolen the show. By using jazz and showing off her palpable sensuality, this movie impairs all your senses, and you won`t even be bothered by it. What better way for her to step into the spotlight was there, than performing one of the most Machiavellian female fatales of the cinema history?
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1st: Betty Blue
What better way to walk into this top than a French movie? After all, we must always give credit, where credit is due. However, don`t think this movie made it to the top just for its origins.
It depicts love just like we all want to imagine it – passionate, intense, sensuality burning right under our skin, and best of all, the actors have given it the polished outlook of authenticity that is so hard to come across in erotic movies.
You have to admit it, most of the times it looks either fake or a remake of the same old story. This movie, despite being old, totally captures the sense of freedom and enjoyment of the characters, with the honest doze of nudity that is expected.
A quite versatile story
Fortunately, or unfortunately, Betty Blue is so vivid that it isn`t just one of those movies you watch and forget the minute after. The story contains a bit of everything – humor, romance, a pinch of tragedy, and is able to make an impression on you right from the first scene. However, what the surprise is, it is up to you to find out.
What can we say about the main characters? Their passion simply consumes them – and we can see it all too clearly, without any moment of it looking fraudulent. Betty and Zorg are two lovers sharing a shack by the beach, at least for the start.
When she discovers a series of notebooks in which Zorg had tried out his writing skills, she comes to the conclusion that this could be their major breakthrough. But her dreams are held back by Zorg`s stubbornness to be content with living on as a simple handworker.
Soon enough, they are offered the chance, or rather Betty creates the chance for herself, to move into the city where she continues to encourage her boyfriend to follow up on his secret talent.
You should definitely watch it, this is why
While it`s true the movie is quite old, there are hardly enough movies to replace it. Probably the word “haunting” is the best way to describe it. Betty Blue is heartrending, passionate and deep, without being too overloaded with details.
The mood is perfect, the nudity delicious and natural, and the intimate scenes take your breath away. Jean Hugues Anglade (Zorg) and Beatrice Dalle (Betty) show us a truly satisfying chemistry and they made a success out of this film together.
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