21 September 2020 | BA_Harrison
Doesn't deliver what the title suggests.
Despite its salacious title, Sadist Erotica is actually one of Franco's less extreme movies, a kitsch '60s detective caper in the style of Modesty Blaise or Danger Diabolik.
The film's heroines are detectives Diana (redhead Janine Reynaud, who looks like Jane Fonda's less attractive sister) and Regina (Rosanna Yanni, a blonde with a great body), who go by the name of 'Red Lips'. Their mission: to find out what has happened to missing model Lida (María Antonia Redondo, a cracking brunette, sexier than either of the main actresses, in my opinion). The guilty party is eye-patch wearing artist Klaus Thiller (Adrien Hoven), who sends his inexplicably hairy assistant Morpho (Michel Lemoine) to abduct beautiful women, the painter believing that his victims' deaths make his work everlasting.
In the right hands, this colourful exercise in comic-strip camp could have been a lot of fun, but Franco's direction here is leaden and his script seems to have been made up on the fly. For much of the time, not a lot of interest happens, with very little in the way of the expected Bond-style action. It's all very tongue in cheek and frivolous, and if it wasn't for some topless nudity, the film would be suitable for the whole family - not what most fans expect from good old Jess! Redondo in her underwear (in the opening scene) and Rosanna Yanni in a few sexy outfits aside, I found the whole thing very tedious, and longed for some Franco excess to spice things up.