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Anna the Pleasure, The Torment (Secrets of a Call Girl) 
Written by: on February 11th, 2010


Theatrical Release Date: Italy, November 27th, 1973
Director: Giuliano Carnimeo
Writers: Ernesto Gastaldi, Francesco Milizia
Cast: Edwige Fenech, Corrado Pani, Richard Conte, John Richardson

DVD released: February 23rd, 2010
Approximate running time: 95 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English, Dolby Digital Mono Italian
Subtitles: English
DVD Release: Mya Communication
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $24.95


Synopsis: Guido (Corrado Pani) narrowly escapes with his life after a failed assassination attempt that was organized by rival mobster Succo. Don Barzini (Richard Conte) orders Guido to leave town until things cool down. While on vacation Guigo falls for a cashier at a local coffee shop named Anna (Edwige Fenech) and when it comes time for him to return to Milan he invites Anna to come along with him. Things run smoothly at first until one day when Anna witnesses Guido kill a man named Albino who had been secretly working with Succo. Don Barzini is fearful that Anna will talk and expose the whole organization to the police which forces Guido’s hand. Guido in order to prove Anna’s loyalty forces her to be become a call girl who scams wealthy clients. When Anna tells Guido that she is pregnant with his child he then insists that she get an abortion. On the way to see the doctor Anna is able to give Guido the slip as the police take him into custody. Anna goes to Rome to stay with an old friend and give birth to a baby boy. Now in a new city and with child will Anna be able to bury her past or will it come back to haunt her?

Anna the Pleasure, The Torment, is fascinating film that is enhanced by a spellbinding performance from Edwige Fenech who had previously worked with director Giuliano Carnimeo on the delirious giallo The Case of the Bloody Iris. Throughout the film Fenech plays through a wide range of emotions. Her character Anna goes from being a shy cashier to being a call girl for her pimp boyfriend to ultimately being a mother of a young child. Fenech plays each the stages of her character development with ease with her strongest acting coming in the final act when Anna has now become a mother. She proves one more than one occasion during the film that she can deliver as an actress and that she is more than just a pretty face. Fenech is most of her films always looks glamorous and in Anna the Pleasure, The Torment she look more stunningly beautiful then she has ever looked before or since.

Corrado Pani who plays Guido in the film is unlikable from the get go as his character is like beast waiting to attack his prey and on several occasions he does just that as he rips off all of Edwige Fenech’s. Guido’s numerous backhands and viscous beatings of Anna are the hardest moments to stomach in the film. Richard Conte as Don Barzini is calm and cool throughout. Giuliano Carnimeo seduces the viewer with his lyrical camera movements. He is always on the move as he keeps the actions and story interesting. The action sequences are expertly executed with one stand out scene involving Anna as she transports drugs across the Swiss border and Guido who passed through the border before her is on a bus when he sees the man who has betrayed him. It is too late to warn her about the man who knows her and could tip off the police. Giuliano Carnimeo’s direction is masterful as he builds tension throughout the film to a fever pitch until you feel like everything is going to explode. He even uses Edwige Fenech’s ample talents to their fullest as he perfectly time each of her various stages of undress. Anna the Pleasure, The Torment is often brutal film that deals with some controversial subjects like abortion, still in the end its underlying message is ultimately about finding love. Ultimately Anna the Pleasure, The Torment is an unconventional film even by exploitation standards with its Kaleidoscope of genre’s that at times clash with each, still it is film that never strays too far away from its strongest asset Edwige Fenech.

The DVD:

Anna the Pleasure, The Torment is presented in an anamorphic widescreen that retains the film’s original aspect ratio. Anna the Pleasure, The Torment was original released in North American on DVD by No Shame Films in 2005 under the title Secrets of a Call Girl. The audio / video presentation for this DVD release looks and sounds just like the audio / video presentation for the No Shame DVD release. This release like the No Shame DVD release is interlaced and has not been flagged for progressive playback. The No Shame DVD release was a dual layer, while this release is a single layer presentation.

This release comes with two audio options a Dolby Digital mono mix in English and a Dolby Digital mono mix in Italian. Removable English subtitles have been provided. Both audio mixes sound clean and clear throughout with the English language mix sounder fuller of the two audio mixes.

Extras for this release include English and Italian language (with English subtitles), options for the films trailer and an extensive image gallery with stills, poster, CD and DVD box art. Overall Anna the Pleasure, The Torment get a good audio / video presentation from Mya Communication.

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