Thursday, December 3, 2020

By the Gods!

Poppea (Olinka Berova) witnessed the secret and sacred ceremony of the Vestal Virgins in POPPEA'S HOT NIGHTS (1969)

When the Vestal Virgins see her they run after her. She has to die because only Vestal Virgins are allowed to witness this dance. The VV dance to a fish deity in phallic form. This is actually a fun film. Is it great art? No but it's entertaining. And it's basically the first 'sex and sandal' movie which spawned a gazillion of them in the 1970s and a good part of the 1980s, including the infamous CALIGULA (1979). Olinka is good in it. She co-stars with her then husband, Brad Harris. I have 3 versions, including French and German copies. The German copy, the best looking one (the screengrabs are from this copy), is 79 minutes long. I recently got another French copy and the runtime for this one is 87 minutes long. It's from a VHS transfer and some scenes are affected by digital artifacts but this copy is the best yet, even if the image is not as good. Think of it as a regular PEPLUM movie with nudity and (mild) sex scenes.

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