Written by: Michael Den Boer on June 24th, 2011
BluRay released: June 28th, 2011
Approximate running time: 131 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
BluRay Release: Cult Epics
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $34.98
Synopsis: Marguerite is a promiscuous woman with a troubled past which has lead to her distrust of men. She lets her guard down after she meets a man named Armand who she fails in love with. Soon distrust and old habits push the two lovers apart. Will they be able to overcome the obstacles that have kept them apart before it is too late to reconcile?
Radley Metzger’s Camille 2000 is a fitting swan song o the 1960’s soft core erotica which would be usurped a few years later by hardcore films like Deep throat and The Devil in Miss Jones. I first go into the films of Radley Metzger via his later hardcore films like The Opening of Misty Beethoven and Barbara Broadcast. One thing that I have noticed with each of his pre-hardcore films when I watch them for the first time is just home much his style has always been there and that humor also has been an integral part of all of his films.
Visually Camille 2000 is a feast for the eyes with its grandiose sets that look designed and unlived in. The style of the film is very much a product of its tie with its vivid colors, bizarre costumes and frankness about multiple sexual encounters. The story is not as complex as its two lead characters Marguerite and Armand who come from two completely different worlds and yet couldn’t be more alike. One sub plot that plays an important part in the film is Marguerite’s drug addiction which helps to show her overall weak and fragile state of mind.
The film is filled with many great compositions like the scene with mirrors surrounding a bed. The acting in this film is very strong with Danièle Gaubert as Marguerite Gautier giving the film’s most memorable performance. Danièle Gaubert perfectly captures the essence of Marguerite Gautier tortured soul. The cast is filled with colorful and eccentric characters that come off feeling as though they were created for this counterfeit world so deliciously created by maverick filmmaker Radley Metzger. Soft-core erotic base cinema is often hit or miss and if you want to see one of the genres best examples then you will want to give Camille 2000 a spin.
The Extended version of Camille 2000 comes on a 25 GB single layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 Progressive anamorphic widescreen. Flesh tones look accurate and colors fare well. Contrast and black levels look consistently good throughout. Print debris is minimal and grain structure looks intact. There are no problems with compression and DNR is kept in check. Watching this transfer is like ‘watching’ this film for the first time. This transfer is easily the best this film has ever looked on home video.
This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. Though the audio generally sounds flat, there are no problems with background noise or distortion and dialog comes through clearly.
Extras for this release include a trailer for the film (2 minutes 16 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), two behind the scenes segments, ‘On The Set of Camille 2000’ (30 minutes 36 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), ‘Restoration of Camille 2000 – a before and after comparison’ (6 minutes 28 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), an alternate scene ‘Cube Love Scene’ (1 minute 52 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), a segment titled ‘Sylviana’s Bare Striptease’ (2 minutes 47 seconds – anamorphic widescreen), and a audio commentary with director Radley Metzger and film historian Michael Bowen. The segment titled ‘On The Set of Camille 2000’ is an audio essay narrated by Radley Metzger, who touches upon the key scenes from the film. It should be noted that there is some overlapping information here, that also crops up during the audio commentary. Some topics discussed on the audio commentary include the Alexandre Dumas Fils novel which this film was adapted from, the cast, the advantages of filming in Europe verse the U.S, working with cinematographer Ennio Guarnieri, collaborating with screenwriter Michael DeForrest, product placement in films, how his experiences as an editor helped him later on as a director, various locations used in this film and the scenes that have been reinstated for the extended version of the film. Also included with this release are trailers for The Lickerish Quartet and The Score.
This extended version of the film adds five scenes which were cut out of the film’s original theatrical release. And while in many instances adding such scenes back into any film would hamper that pacing. They actually enhance the overall flow of the narrative by adding more depth to the story at hand. Overall Camille 2000 gets a first rate release from Cult Epics.
Note: Cult Epics is also releasing the theatrical cut of Camille 2000 as a separate BluRay release. And both the theatrical cut and the extended version will be released on DVD.