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3.5 out of 5 stars
34
3.5 out of 5 stars
Format: DVD|Change
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I have to admit I like this movie a lot and have watched it several times over the years so this DVD was a treat.
To be honest the acting is often well over-the-top (just superb as one character might say), the effects are so-so and the story is only fair but put that together with some brilliant camera work and the re-mastered sound track it somehow seems to gel. And all this for a butterfly.
There is a noticeable lull between the all action first part where lead Brent Huff flexes his muscles against various low-lifes and the last 40 minutes or so when the female leads take the centre stage in some pretty scanty outfits.
There are no household names here, of the two female heroines Tawny Kitaen as Gwendoline starred in several low budget movies like Witchboard but is better remembered for her marriage to David Coverdale and her appearance in several Whitesnake videos. Zabou Breitman is the better actress by far and has a string of films to her name as actor, writer and director and Bernadette Lafont lords it as the overdressed queen.
There are some good set pieces like the horseless chariot race and although the fight scenes are hardly world title bouts they have enough to hold the attention.
The extras are pretty reasonable too, especially the interview with writer/director Just Jaeckin and the photographs for the Lui photoshoot and as this is the "uncut" version there is a list of the original BBFC cuts that are restored here.
All in all a pretty decent package and one I will be watching often.
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on 4 May 2009
What an absolute delight this movie is, and another masterpiece by director Just Jaeckin (Emmanuelle, Story of O). Based on a cult comic strip, the movie is well photographed and made in hilarious comic strip style. The story chugs along at a cracking pace with charming performances by the cute female leads (Tawny Kitaen & Zabou), and delightfully over-the-top turns by Brent Huff as the hunky can't-be-arsed hero, and the delicious Bernadette Lafont as the deranged Queen.

More female breasts on show here than you can shake a stick at, great sets and locations, superb fight scenes, some comic violence, and a great soundtrack which shifts effortlessly between dreamy romantic music and 1980's disco, all add up to make this an enjoyable watch. The story is complete tosh, but this is superior tosh!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 9 November 2014
The film opens to a very late 70;s electro pop beat with a quite modern title sequence as it cuts to an Indiana Jones come BladeRunner style 1920-30s Chinatown. [Also known in the US as The Perils of Gwendoline]. Three guys crack open a massive transit crate to reveal an attractive American woman –Gwendoline [Tawney Kitaen]. Taken to the gangs leader and pursued by her maid Beth [Zabou], the bound captive Gwendoline awaits her fearful fate. Suddenly, in crashes Willard, straight through the window and in a hammed up fight scene he puts many a cheap oriental martial arts movie to shame, he kills off the gang before heading downstairs to play a game or two of roulette. Here he becomes ensnared into Gwendolines scheme to find her missing father—a butterfly collector. What follows its a Buck Rogers in the 25th century, meets The Lost World TV series meets King Solomons Mines and Barbarella colliding with Emmanuelle. If you can take that kind of ride then this is definitely for you. If they don’t appeal, you’ll hate this.
This is very much over the top slapstick comic book style humour in the Pulp Adventure genre, even sporting a Benny Hill type chase sequence at the mid point. The costumes are there to titulate providing plenty of bare breasts and buttocks –both male and female. It’s old school sexploitation but its light hearted. Take out the overt violence and crude swearing and this could quite easily have been aimed at a much wider audience.
The disc has a number of extras mainly in the form of commentaries, short film clips/traillers and stills which attempt to explain the thought process behind it all. .If you're expecting an Emmanuelle or Story of O soft porn flick, you'll be bitterly disappointed as it's all very much in the Benny Hill mould. But this is no classic like Barbarella, but the filming, props, sets and costumes all work well together and make this a solid **** rating
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on 17 November 2010
I had heard of this movie some years ago, and on and off had looked for a copy on VHS but never finding one I promptly forgot about it. Then very recently a good film buff friend from New Zealand recommended the DVD to me and I was able to get to see 'Gwendoline' in its full uncut glory...

This movie musn't be taken seriously, thats the point I don't think some people get when they watch it! It was never made as a 'serious' film, but simply as an enjoyable comic book. (it is based on a popular French comic strip 'The Adventures of Sweet Gwendoline') The story resembles something akin to Raiders of the Lost Ark or Romancing the Stone, but with more nudity and some strange scenes of S&M when our heroes enter the fabled land of Yik-Yak. Even so despite the directors other movies (Emmanuel and The Story of 'O') its sexual aspects are not really that gratuitous. This movie is very silly, sexy and funny, for both the right and wrong reasons... Look out for the man eating Crocodile folks!

The cast are well suited to acting in this sort of movie. Tawny Kitain, in her first role, looks great and tries her best to get into the part of Gwendoline. Brent Huff (Who?) is the macho lead, a reluctant hero come Han Solo wannabe whose more brawn than brains... indeed Huff's lack of acting skill is perhaps a bonus for this role... But tops for me was French actress and model Zabou as Gwendoline's trusty maid/sidekick Beth, who on the one hand is a real zany and kookie sort of girl. but then on the other can be uber-sexy and worldly wise... Wait until you see her wearing a palace guard's g-string unifom :-)

The other cast members encountered in Yik-Yak are great fun, especially the OTT Queen and the sets are also pretty good in my opinion. Production values are quite high and apart from the obvious studio setting for the Hong Kong dock the jungles and deserts were actual locations in Morroco and Thailand which adds a nice exotic touch.

Gwendoline is a popular movie and if viewed in the right frame of mind its very enjoyable. Give it a go, you won't regret it and you'll find yourself a real guilty pleasure...
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on 4 July 2006
From the impressive opening title of a Nucleus films production you can be assured of something special -brilliant crisp picture quality in gorgeous widescreen would have you believe that this film was shot in 2006, not 1984 ! Obvious loving care has gone into the presentation of this release, now available uncut, details of which are covered in the generous special features. There's an enlightening interview with director Just Jaeckin entitled Perils of Just + audio commentary which should answer any other questions you might have about the production ! Regarding the tag line of Barabarella meets Indiana Jones I could coin a new term of `erotic - action - comedy', although it would be a bit unfair to pigeon - hole the movie as it's unlike anything I've seen before ! It starts by resembling a Hong Kong movie as our 2 heroines get involved with a bunch of crazy Chinese while trying to enlist help to find Gwen's butterfly collector Dad! American actor Brent Huff (as Willard) is coerced into assisting & shortly thereafter the threesome are captured by natives...to give any more away would be to spoil it as the film changes gear again when the trio arrive at the land of the Yek Yeik ! The 2 leading ladies are totally delectable, Tawny Kitaen being recently remembered as Deainiera, wife of Hercules in the hit TV series, whilst Zabou ( a deliciously elfin like French girl) has a prolific resume of work in Europe.

The eye catching photos used for the front & back covers of the DVD are enough to whet the appetite & the inclusion of trailers for other releases by Messrs Marc Morris & Jake West only serve to motivate the viewer to seek out future films from this new & exciting company !

Grab a copy & enjoy a great evening's entertainment !
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This is an amusing film that I missed when it was being passed around as a VHS video by my mates back in the 1980's. It has been described as Benny Hill meets Indiana Jones. Whatever the case, it is certainly entertaining . It was never going to win any wards or plaudits from po-faced film critics, but who cares? There is always a place for a tongue-in-cheek romp such as this one. Tawny Kitaen is great as Gwendoline, plays her part well as a comic send-up. She and the female population of the Kingdom of Yak Yeik, plus her trusty maid played by Zabou, are all pleasantly attractive whether in their fetish-gear styled uniforms or simply topless. A great film adaptation of the comic strip by John Willie. Having directed Emmanuelle, Story of O, and Lady Chatterley's Lover, with this film Just Jaeckin displayed a sound touch for comedy. I'm unsurprised it is regarded as a minor classic of its genre.
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on 3 November 2011
I saw the trailer for this one about twenty years ago and have been fascinated with the idea of watching it ever since - it was almost like a forbidden gem for a while with its general lack of availability and bumpy BBFC history (they originally demanded quite a few cuts in the 80s, back in the day when they were much more easily offended, and this censored version - released through Embassy video - became the only convenient way to see it in the UK). The trailer paints quite a different picture to what you eventually get to see - the film is kind of an erotic comedy fantasy adventure, and not entirely successful one (depending on perspective obviously). Personally I think the main issue is with the 'comedy' - it's quite juvenile in nature and no funnier than some of those sitcoms aimed at young teens that one happens to unfortunately catch a glimpse of when flicking channels on occasion (i.e. apathy is the primary response, rather than laughter). It does, however, have a few things going for it: there is a sense of epic adventure in there, doused in lots of imaginative touches that push it into the realms of science fiction/fantasy. Tawny Kitaen (probably one her better roles), one-time babe of David Coverdale (the lucky person, him), looks really fetching throughout, and conveys an attractive sense of innocence well, while she's joined by a host of naked and semi-naked females mainly in the latter part of the film. These factors keep things moving along in a moderately entertaining fashion and at a reasonable pace, but it feels as though it should have been better. The humour repeatedly drags things down into the realms of the silly, and the square-jawed hero/Indiana Jones-wannabe was particularly getting on my nerves. The score, which I believe partly constituted the aforementioned trailer, brings about an odd contrast to the proceedings in that there is an air of melancholy to be detected in its electronic waves - it's certainly not a score I would have guessed to be supporting on-screen comedy (perhaps the composer didn't realise it was supposed to be funny while scoring - quite possible!). All in all, there are pluses and minuses in Gwendoline, but it never quite becomes the great film it could have.

The DVD from Nucleus is a good one - anamorphic widescreen transfer (2.35:1) that holds up well (though will never compete with anything Blu-ray can now offer), ably backed up by an excellent selection of audio tracks: English stereo or 5.1, French stereo or 5.1, and director's commentary. I did watch this first time with the English (5.1) track active, though I may try the French track out next time around - material can come across very differently in foreign tongue and perhaps this oddball stuff will work better in the director's native language. There are a couple of other small extras to pad things out. The DVD cover is also reversible (not immediately noticeable when it comes in a standard black amaray case) - not a massive difference, rather you are presented with a variation on front cover.

Overall - 2.5 for the film (though I'll give it another chance in a year or so and may amend the review if I change my mind!) and 3.5 for the DVD.
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on 6 August 2011
It's cheesy as hell, has a terrible but awesome dialogue and host of one-liners, but contains a brilliant plot, beautiful women, locations and scenery.
Imagine Indiana jones made by the writers of Archer! Half way through it changes into a crazy jodorowsky-infused Holy Mountain epic mixed with a Barbarella-style gadgetfest. This is fantasy cheese at it's finest.
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on 4 April 2010
This is an excellent film if you take it as an effort to transfer an erotic strip cartoon to the screen. Otherwise, the story line is a hacknied cliche, the acting terrible and the sets were obviously the smallest item in the budget(along with the ladies costumes), Apparently I am the only one to think that Tawny Kitaen, the female lead, bears an uncanny facial resemblance to Gina Davies. On balance the film is a flimsy excuse to oggle the scantily-clad female form. Absolutely nothing wrong with that, especially since any third-former has seen more than is on view here.
Its just pure fun and, considering the Director's other offerings, just a pleasure to watch.
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on 9 December 2014
it arrived very quickly - good packaging - as described - no damage.
no point in reviewing the film itself - there are websites dedicated to reviewing films, books, music and art etc. The problem with abstract concepts is there is no quantifiable measure. It is all subjective.
the picture and sound were what I expect of a dvd but to qualify that I'm not 'into' the latest hi tech surround sound super HD whatever. (no doubt some more knowledgeable than me are laughing at how out of date I am already).
So, if you just want a watchable, fun, not serious, bit of sci-fi/fantasy/action adventure, easy on the eye entertainment, this fits the bill.
ACID TEST: If it were to be damaged would I replace it? I'd say 60/40 I would
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