Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Hidden Cinema of Jean Rollin: Bouches Lascives (1979)

Hitting French theaters just a few weeks before Christmas in 1979, Bouches Lascives was the final film Jean Rollin released in the seventies under the moniker Robert Xavier. Sandwiched in between two of his finest films, Fascination and The Night of the Hunted, Bouches Lascives can rightly be called one of the least distinguished films in Rollin's canon as it is, in fact, not really a proper film at all as it is just a compilation of two other works.

Looking to cash in on the popularity of the adult films Rollin had been directing in the seventies, Bouches Lascives was created using footage from two older Rollin directed adult-features, La comtesse Ixe (1976) and Lèvres entrouvertes (1978). In a way pre-dating the modern gonzo compliation films that flood the adult-market today, Bouches Lascives is a near plotless 75 minute work made up of pretty much nothing but sex.

Save for a charming hand-written title sequence and a few tricky over the head camera-moves, Bouches Lascives is stylistically and thematically a fairly empty film and there isn't much on hand to identify it as the work of Jean Rollin, save for the cast which features a few Rollin-film familiars.

The cast of Bouches Lascives is ultimately the only thing really notable about it. Legendary Frech-adult star Catherine Greiner gets top billing as Cathy Stewart and Rollin regular Alain Plumey appears as Cyril Val. Greiner and Val would appear again together a year later in the magnificent Night of the Hunted for Rollin and the two had worked for him numerous times before. Prolific Dominique Aveline also appears again for Rollin as is Chistine Lodes. The extremely popular Karine Gambier is also on hand, as are several othetr actors who had graced Rollin's adult output, including lovely Rachel Mhas.

Sadly, like the majority of Rollin's adult-work, Bouches Lascives feels like it is directed by an artist on auto-pilot and it could only be recommended to Rollin completists like myself. That said, I am very happy I was able to recently add it to my collection and I am glad to be able to share these stills from its endearing title sequence.


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