Friday, April 20, 2007

Die Jungfraunmaschine (The Virgin Machine)

When you start to watch this movie your instant reaction is: What is this??!! But you can’t stop watching all these strange/disgusting characters… until it hits you! Those ugly/strange characters are placed on purpose in this movie… “bad” cinematography, lack of a story, camera moves and even “bad” acting is done on purpose! For moments I felt like I was watching any John Waters movie and well, they are totally related.

Directed by then “new” underground German director Monika Treut, this multilingual, black and white 1988 movie absolutely belongs to the underground genre or better, is a true cult movie. This film had the honor to be exhibited in the 2000 Berlinale because: “in a rare year without a new Monika Treut film, the Panorama team has decided to screen her breakthrough work The Virgin Machine within the Manfred Salzgeber tribute”.

And there are positive comments from USA critics, like this one from Variety written in 1999: “For more than 15 years, sexual provocateur and fest fixture Monika Treut has been cheerfully championing a laissez-faire approach to pleasures of the flesh in her docus and features ("The Virgin Machine," "Didn't Do It for Love"), rattling the cages of moralists and militants alike by eschewing politically correct strategies in favor of a more benevolent approach to gender expression”.

This movie is not for all audiences not only because it is a cult movie, but because also has explicit depictions of lesbianism, incest, sadomasochism, homosexuality, and “other” situations. But then, which John Waters movie does not show some, if not all, of this?

Finally, this movie is in a crazy list called “Cult movies that men don’t like”, so this gives you another hint about how weird this movie is.

No, I am not a particular fan of cult movies, but I have seen almost all John Waters movies and yes, I had my "Rocky Horror Picture Show" experience at midnight!!! (and own the special edition DVD!) So, I am not complaining after watching this movie, but if you decide to watch it, do it at your own risk!

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