Friday, December 31, 2021

Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties: Limited Edition – Severin Films (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

Theatrical Release Date: Spain, 1980
Director: Jesus Franco
Writer: Jesus Franco
Cast: Lina Romay, Lynn Monteil, Olivier Mathot, Joëlle Le Quément, Mel Rodrigo, Claude Boisson, Albino Graziani, Susan Hemingway, Muriel Montossé

Release Date: August 29th, 2017
Approximate Running Time: 94 Minutes 27 Seconds
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Rating: NR
Sound: LPCM Mono English, LPCM Mono French
Subtitles: English SDH (for the English language track), English (for the French language track)
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $29.98

"Lina Romay (of BARBED WIRE DOLLS and MACUMBA SEXUAL infamy) and Lynn Monteil (of Jean Rollin’s ZOMBIE LAKE and Franco’s SADOMANIA) star as a pair of cunning bisexual strippers released from prison to work undercover for the U.S. government. What follows is a deranged mélange of kinky threesomes, crazed S&M, depraved white slavers and audacious international politics that will leave even the most obsessive Franco fanatics slack-jawed in astonishment." - synopsis provided by the distributor

Video: 3.5/5

Here’s the information provided about this release's transfer, "restored uncut in HD."

Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties comes on a 25 GB single layer Blu-ray.

Disc Size: 21.6 GB

Feature: 15.5 GB

Though there are a few moments where colors look subdued, they appear to be accurate. The transfer is faithful to the film's intended soft-focus cinematography. Black levels are best described as adequate, and there are some mild issues related to compression. Overall, when compared to previous home video releases, this new transfer is superior in every way.

Audio: 4/5

This release comes with two audio options: a LPCM mono mix in English and a LPCM mono mix in French. It should be noted that both of these audio mixes were created in post-production. Both audio mixes sound clear, balanced, and robust when they need to be, especially the film’s score. Also included with this release are English SDH subtitles for the English language track and English subtitles for the French language track. Out of these two audio mixes, the French language track is the most satisfying. With the English language track having many of the trappings that are associated with English language tracks created in post-production.

Extras:

Extras for this release include reversible cover art, English language theatrical trailer (2 minutes 7 seconds, LPCM mono English, no subtitles), outtakes (8 minutes 50 seconds, there is no sound with this extra), an interview with Stephen Thrower, author of Murderous Passions, Franco Volume 1: The Delirious Cinema of Jesús and Flowers of Perversion, Volume 2: The Delirious Cinema of Jesús Franco titled Stephen Thrower on Two Female Spies (28 minutes 46 seconds, LPCM stereo English, no subtitles), a featurette titled Filmmaker Donald Farmer Interviews Longtime Franco Composer Daniel White (11 minutes 51 seconds, LPCM stereo English with removable English subtitles) and an Interview with director Jess Franco titled Two Cats in The Canaries (10 minutes 28 seconds, LPCM stereo French with non-removable English subtitles).

Other extras include the Spanish version of the film under the title Opal of Fire, Merchants of Sex (90 minutes 14 seconds, in Spanish with removable English subtitles, 1.33:1 aspect ratio). This extra comes on a separate DVD that is limited to 3,000 copies.

Summary:

Over the years, Jess Franco has been known to remake or create variations of films that he had previously made. The spy genre is one that he has dabbled in numerous times, including films like Lucky, the Inscrutable, and The Devil Came from Akasava. The premise of Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties bears a striking resemblance to Jess Franco’s two Red Lips films (Two Undercover Angels and Kiss Me, Monster).

There are two versions of this film: Opal of Fire, Merchants of Sex (the Spanish language version) and Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties (the English/French language version). Besides each version having footage that is not in the other version, The Spanish language version also omits Cecile and Brigitte’s introduction scene, which gives more background information about their mission. The English and French language versions have this scene. Also, the English/French language version has scenes with actress Susan Hemingway (her character does not appear in the Spanish language version).

The narrative for Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties revolves around two ex-convicts who use their sexy dancing skills to help them spy on the enemy. The way in which these two convicts dance is almost exactly like the way the dance number was choreographed in Two Undercover Angels. This drawn-out strip tease is the most memorable and enjoyable moment in Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties. Another standout moment is when Lina Romay’s character, Cecile, is captured and tortured by the enemy. The action is fast and furious as things move along quickly in this sexy spy romp.

The two leads, Lina Romay as Cecile and Nadine Pascal as Brigitte, make a dynamic and alluring duo. For whatever reason, Lina Romay’s character is featured more than Nadine Pascal’s character, even though they are paired together at the beginning of the film. This film also features some off-the-wall humor, like the scene where Cecile finds a corpse in her closet. The score for Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties is very catchy and, at times, it sounds oddly familiar.

The film's English title, "Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties," is kind of misleading since none of the female spies wear flower panties. The film's Spanish language title is "palo de fuego: Mercaderes del sexo," which translates into Opal of Fire, Merchants of Sex. And the Spanish title makes more sense because it reveals some of the plot. Ultimately, if you enjoyed Jess Franco’s two Red Lips films (Two Undercover Angels and Kiss Me, Monster), then you will surely enjoy Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties.

Two Female Spies with Flowered Panties gets an excellent release from Severin Films, highly recommended.








Written by Michael Den Boer

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