Posted by: kfugrip | July 18, 2007

Managing expectations

It isn’t very often that I go into a film knowing that it will be bad. I know that there are many out there who like to watch bad movies and find them funny or even good, or they band together and watch a bad movie together and it’s a communal experience. I’m not one of those people. I don’t like watching bad movies. However, I have seen some of the imagery from La Bete, directed by Walerian Borowczyk, made it a movie I had to see.

La Bete concerns the marriage of the duke’s son with a wealthy American heiress (though the actress speaks with a french accent). The filled with nonsensical diversions and threads that don’t connect, but the basic plot is about the failing legacy of a family and their estate. They need to marry off the son, who spends his days breeding horses, but the family has a secret. I will not spoil the film but I will say that there is a beast that lived in the woods and it has an extended sex scene. I saw a still from this sex scene on and I knew that I’d have to watch this film at some point, even though I knew it would be terrible.

Watching the movie reminded me of student films that I’ve seen. The transitions between scenes are often nonexistent and when they do exist they are overly long. I know that the Borowczyk had a plan and viewed himself as an artist, but the movie reeks of amateurism. Ham-fisted attempts at humor dot the film, and some tired visual jokes, mainly concerning the duke’s daughter and his chauffeur, keep interrupting the flow of the story, what little flow there is. Most of the compositions, while sometimes beautiful, don’t mesh and cause the film to feel disjointed. This could be purposeful but I dont’ think that is the case here.

I also felt like the film kept repeating itself. Scenes were, dramatically, saying the same thing as a scene before. Nothing was developing except maybe the actress was wearing less clothing the next time. Very odd choice. Also, for an “erotic” film it was not so erotic. There is more sitting around and talking on the phone than seduction or sex.

The film seemed to be a product of it’s budgetary constraints. I give it 2 stars. Why not one? Well the bar is so low for films like this, erotica, that it has to fail on every level. This film is at least interesting in the train-wreck fashion.

bete.jpg 256346.jpg



  1. Yes! Finally! Despite what you say, I know this film touched something primal deep down inside you, that inner animal we all harbor. I call it, The Beast Within Us All. Do not be afraid to let yours out, my friend. You will be a better man for it.

  2. wasn’t josh supposed to watch this with us?…i wonder why…

  3. Sexy. That’s why.

    Seriously, hats off to Adam for making it all the way through this. I have yet to sit through La Bete in its entirety, not to mention the 2 discs of extra features on the special edition DVD I own (it was a joke gift, I swear.)

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