Blu-ray / DVD. Vivid.
at the end of the Second World War, Cathouse 45
is a simple tale of soldiers, prostitutes and the things people
have to do to survive in times of conflict. Most significantly
in this case, it’s Italian soldier Tony, who returns home
with American friend Pierre(!) only to find that his virginal
bride-to-be has been working at the brothel the pair visit. This
being porn, such a revelation is dealt handled without much angst
from either of them (those the expected reconciliation sex scene
oddly doesn’t occur), and everyone lives happily ever after.
The build-up to this of course involves plenty of footage of the
day-to-day workings of the surprisingly rustic brothel and its
While it won’t win any prizes for storyline, Cathouse
45 is a pretty well-mounted effort – the sets,
costumes and hairstyles all suitably authentic (though the odd
implant and tattoo tend to shatter the vintage atmosphere) and
if you are a fan of nostalgic erotica, this might well appeal.
Performances seem fairly solid, though of course the dubbing into
English of this Italian production is distracting, and the voice-over
is always on the verge of tumbling into bathos.
big selling point here is the fact that the film is in 3D. The
impressively complete 3 disc package from Vivid includes both
2D and 3D versions on DVD and Blu-ray – the latter format
split over two discs and featuring a 3D version that will only
work with 3D TVs and players. The DVD 3D version is anaglyph (two
pairs of glasses are included) and I have to say that, quality-wise,
it’s the best 3D video I’ve seen – though I’ll
qualify that by adding that it’s the first 3D video I’ve
watched on my current TV. Still, while the inevitable colour washout
caused by the glasses remains a distraction, this is very smooth,
with no blurring or eye strain at all. This might well be in part
because director Marcus Dolby works within the limitations of
3D video, sensibly keeping shots at medium level and avoiding
too much camera movement and fast editing.
the sex scenes are the least effective in three dimensions –
while 3D porn seems a no-brainer, it’s worth considering
that sex is generally a close-contact activity, and the only things
likely to poke out of the screen are erections and cum-shots –
neither of which are likely to appeal to the male, straight audience
this is aimed at! That said, the 3D does add something to this
film, unlike many others I’ve seen – pity it’s
used on such a prosaic story. Spider-Man
XXX 3D would be something to behold I imagine!
Still, a solid, if unremarkable movie and a decent package make
this well worth checking out, especially if you do have 3D TV
and want something more than Disney films and sport to watch.
IT NOW (USA)