Apr 7, 2020

Il Piacere (1985)

A period piece by Joe D'Amato about a guy, his dead wife, and his daughter with a serious Electra complex.

 Gerard Villeneuve (Gabriele Tinti) meets Leonora (Andrea Guzon) at a carnival in Venice.

 Together they visit an opium den run by Haunani (Laura Gemser).

 They get high, naked and have sex.

 Many years of past.  Leonora has died, and Gerard sadly listens to her tapes on the reel-to-reel.

 In fact, Leonora is actually in the room with him - dead and naked.  The maid Fiorella (Lilli Carati) tries to put her stockings on for the funeral.

 What kind of fucked up shit is this?  This scene, with its strong necrophilia overtone, is almost identical to the one in Buio Omega, another D'Amato film from 1978.

 Gerard's two children, Ursula and Edmund (Marco Mattioli), arrive from the funeral.  He hasn't seen them in ten years, so he'd forgotten what they look like.

 Ursula (also played by Andrea Guzon) is the spitting image of her mother.

 Edmund is a bit weird.  He goes into a seizure and starts calling his dead mother a whore.  Ursula calms him by letting him suck on her breast (!)

 Fiorella gives Ursula a bath.

 It gets weirder.  Edmund jumps in the tub... and Fiorella starts washing his junk.

The best thing this movie has going for it is Andrea Guzon's willingness to be stark naked in virtually every scene.

Ursula dresses in her dead mother's clothes and starts flirting with daddy.  Gerard tells her to cut it out.

 At the movies, she disturbs Gerard by fondling a total stranger.

 They go for a ride, and Ursula starts stripping - just throwing herself at Gerard.

 Despite the fact that she looks exactly like Leonora in her prime, he still manages to resist his daughter's advances.  He throws a coat over her.

 Meanwhile, Fiorella is having fun with Edmund, posing nude for him.

 For whatever reason, Ursula flirts with Boris, a well endowed stableman (Maurice Poli).  He then tries to rape her.

 Gerard arrives in the nick of time to stop it.  Ursula is still a virgin.

 He punishes Boris, but knows Ursula brought this upon herself.

 Ursula, again dressed as her mother, meets Rosa (Dagmar Lassander).  She runs a brothel and was her mother's friend.

 Gerard and Ursula out for a pleasant swing.  

 Ursula pretends to fall so her father will come help her.

 He takes the bait.

 Once again she comes on to him, often using words her mother said (which she memorized from her mother's tapes).  This shit is getting out of control.

 Ursula goes to work for Rosa.

 Her first day on the job is a success.  But since she's only 17 (!) the clients aren't permitted to have sex with her.

 Ursula is presented to additional customers.  She's a big hit.

 But it proves to be frustrating for the guys since they can't deflower the merchandise. 

Ursula vandalizes Gerard's mementos of Leonora and rerecorded the tapes with her own voice. He gets upset and rapes Fiorella (!).

Rosa prepares Ursula for her big day - to be sold to the highest bidder at auction.

She gives her a sniff of cocaine.

In search of Ursula, Fiorella and Gerard wind up at that same opium den. Haunani (Laura Gemser) gives them some drugs then has sex with them.

Ursula is on the auction block

As she's auctioned, we get some impressive views.

Gerard goes to the police, but they refuse to help. The highest bidder at Ursula's auction is the commander of the Venetian fascist militia.

Gerard pays Rosa more than the highest bidder in order to save Ursula's virginity.  She begs him again, but he refuses to have sex with her.

As he walks down a Venetian passageway, we have a recreation of the first scene. This time it's Ursula who beckons for him - and we can presume that this time Gerard gives in.  THE END

I generally don't go for period pieces - and didn't really go for this one.  However, it manages to still have lots of checks in the "win" column thanks to D'Amato's no-fucks-given sleaze factor.  Also, Andrea Guzon is just flashing her bush from the first frame to the last.  The story itself is beyond twisted and fucked up, but that's what turns an otherwise lame period piece into an ace exploitation flick.

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