CRIMES OF PASSION
RELEASE DATE: Available Now on Blu-ray/DVD Combo
WRITTEN BY: Barry Sandler
DIRECTED BY: Ken Russell
STARRING: Kathleen Turner, Anthony Perkins, Bruce Davison |
What in the holy hell did I just watch?!! I have no idea; and I’ll bet you dollars to demons you’ll have that same overwhelming sense of head-scratchin’ puzzlement when you sit down to watch Ken Russell’s insane-o psycho-sexual thriller CRIMES OF PASSION, the only film (and I 100% guarantee this next statement) where you will see Anthony G-damned Norman Bates Perkins dressed as a priest trying to impale Kathleen Turner on a razor-sharp sex toy. … V.I. WARSHAWSKI this ain’t, my creeps…
Anyway, for those of you who aren’t immediately ordering this thing right now based on the absurdity above, here are the basics of CRIMES OF PASSION: Joanna (Turner), a prim and proper fashion designer during the day becomes China Blue, a high-octane hooker by night. Her foil is a psychotic preacher (Perkins) who indulges in her services before going blood simple and trying to kill her with a rather pointy marital aide. In the mix is a plot to sell fashion designs investigated by our rather drab hero, Bobby — a married dude who also takes Blue up on her “special offers” — but honestly any of that is completely overshadowed by whatever the hell Turner and Perkins are up to at any given moment. Along the way we are also treated to bleeding blow-up dolls, rando folks diving into a pool, and a truckload of pink and blue gels utilized simultaneously.
Equal parts PSYCHO send-up, soft-core (though extremely hard for the times) sex flick, and some sort of rumination on sex itself, CRIMES OF PASSION is as off kilter as they come. It’s definitely pure exploitation trash (as we like it!!), but with Russell at the helm it ofttimes becomes an arthouse flick dipped in crazy juice (or some other unmentionable fluid). And as preposterous as this whole confection is, it’s made 135% more ridiculous by the unreasonably dated synth/sax raunch-fest that is Rick Wakeman’s score.
Not that you need any more prodding to run out and pick this up immediately, but there is a nice selection of extras included with Arrow’s release of the film as well as including (but not limited to) a commentary by director Russell and producer-screenwriter Barry Sandler, deleted scenes, interviews, a trailer, and some footage of a 2009 retrospective of the film in Orlando. You also get two cuts of the film, an unrated and director’s cut.
I can’t urge you to get this thing strongly enough. You’ve never seen such an off-kilter, lascivious, down-right sleazy thriller in all your days (not to mention one featuring such established names)!