Carmelo Bene – Nostra signora dei turchi AKA Our Lady of the Turks (1968)

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Independent filmmaker Carmelo Bene makes his debut in this feature that concerns the murder of the Saracens in the city of Otranto centuries ago. Our Lady appears at various time in the film, symbolic of the carnal desires and spiritual dreams of all men. Flashbacks and avant garde cinematic techniques provide passages of erotica and black humor on occasion. The story was taken from Bene’s own novel as the author oversees all aspects of writing, production and direction in this experimental and provocative film. Continue reading

Carmelo Bene – Salome (1972)

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This experimental film by the maverick Italian director Carmelo Bene is a free adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s play Salome and is even more irreverent than the original. In this film, Bene carries the New Testament story beyond the incident with Herod, and pictures Christ nailing himself to the cross, unable (of course) to finish the task. This film uses many musical and filmic special effects and includes at least one pornographic sequence and a number of sadistic ones. ~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide Continue reading

Carmelo Bene – Salome (1972)

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This experimental film by the maverick Italian director Carmelo Bene is a free adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s play Salome and is even more irreverent than the original. In this film, Bene carries the New Testament story beyond the incident with Herod, and pictures Christ nailing himself to the cross, unable (of course) to finish the task. This film uses many musical and filmic special effects and includes at least one pornographic sequence and a number of sadistic ones. ~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide Continue reading

Carmelo Bene – Don Giovanni (1970)

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More sombre, controlled and abstract than Bene’s earlier work, this is a baroque, ironic and claustrophobic avant-garde ‘restatement’ of the opera’s incest episode. Accompanied by Mozart’s score, this compulsive, cubist fragmentation of conventional plot in favour of a more profound exploration also utilizes complex, subtle montage, varying from minimal cinema to a sustained staccato rhythm. Bene is reconfirmed as one of the true iconoclastic talents of contemporary cinema. Continue reading