Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Eugenie… the Story of Her Journey into Perversion: Limited Edition – Blue Underground (Blu-ray/DVD/CD Combo)

Theatrical Release Date: Spain/West Germany, 1970
Director: Jesus Franco
Writer: Harry Alan Towers
Cast: Maria Rohm, Marie Liljedahl, Jack Taylor, Christopher Lee, Paul Muller

Release Date: December 15th, 2015
Approximate Running Time: 86 Minutes 58 Seconds
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVCC
Rating: NR
Sound: DTS-HD Mono English
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: OOP

"Marie Liljedahl (the luscious star of INGA) is Eugenie, an innocent young woman taken to an island paradise where she is initiated into a world of pleasure and pain controlled by the sinister Dolmance (the legendary Christopher Lee). But when she surrenders to her own forbidden fantasies, Eugenie becomes trapped in a frenzy of drugs, sadomasochism and murder. Can a frightened girl in the grip of carnal perversion find sanctuary in the orgies of the depraved?" - synopsis provided by the distributor

Video: 3.5/5

Here’s the information provided about this release's transfer, “Brand new 4K High Definition transfer from the original uncensored camera negative.”

Eugenie… the Story of Her Journey into Perversion comes on a 25 GB single layer Blu-ray.

Disc Size: 18 GB

Feature: 13.8 GB

For this release, a brand new 4K transfer was created. Just like Marquis de Sade’s Justine, this release has been given an extensive makeover, and though this is the best Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion has looked to date on home video. Areas of greatest improvement include color saturation and black levels. That said, there is one area where this transfer comes up short, and that is its use of digital noise reduction.

Audio: 4.5/5

This release comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD mono mix in English. There are no issues with distortion or background noise; dialog comes through clearly; everything sounds balanced; and the score sounds appropriately robust. This release comes with three subtitle options: English SDH, French, and Spanish.

Extras:

Extras for this release include, a poster & stills gallery, a English trailer for the film (3 minutes 23 seconds, Dolby Digital mono English, no subtitles), a featurette titled Perversion Stories (17 minutes 30 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English and French with removable English subtitles) and an interview with author Stephen Thrower the author of Murderous Passions: The Delirious Cinema of Jesus Franco (18 minutes 7 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), reversible cover art, a CD that contains the score for the film and a twenty two page book with cast & crew info, an essay titled Justine Among the Swingers: Jess Franco's Eugenie written by Stephen Thrower and information about the CD that contains the score.

Included with this release is a DVD that has the same content as the Blu-Ray included as part of this combo release.

Summary:

Over the course of three years, Jess Franco would collaborate with producer Harry Allen Towers on a total of nine films. With Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion is their seventh collaboration and their second adaption of the literary works of the Marquise de Sade. And once again, the screenplay would be written by Harry Allan Towers under the pseudonym Peter Welbeck.

Whereas their previous Marquise de Sade adaptation, Justine, was an epic in scope, this one is a costume drama set in the 18th century. This time around, they would set the story at hand during the present and give it a more intimate setting. Fortunately, these changes greatly added to Jess Franco's vision and not a more sanitized version for the masses like its predecessor. That said, Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion is clearly the superior of the two Jess Franco/Harry Allen Towers-De Sade adaptions.

The first thing that strikes you about Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion in comparison to Marquis de Sade's Justine is how much more explicit of an adaptation it is. And nowhere is this more evident than in its graphic deception of sexuality and sadness. Eugenie: The Story of Her Journey into Perversion's key moment of depravity is a scene where Eugenie's will is finally broken by Madame Saint Ange and her stepbrother. Also, while watching Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion, one can clearly see themes which would dominate Jess Franco's cinema from the 1970's and beyond.

From a production standpoint, Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion is filled with gorgeous visuals and many moments that are filled with a tremendous amount of atmosphere. And when it comes to this film's two leading ladies, Jess Franco does not waste a moment to showcase their more than ample assets. One of the best moments in this regard is a scene where Madame Saint Ange helps Eugenie as she is taking a bath. Another strength of Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion is that when it comes to pacing, it is never an issue as things are always moving forward.

From a casting perspective, Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion features another strong ensemble cast and, more importantly, a more inspired choice in regards to the casting of Marie Liljedahl (Inga) in the role of the protagonist Eugenie. She delivers a captivating performance that finds just the right balance between naivety and decadent behavior. Another remarkable performance includes Maria Rohm (Venus in Furs) in the role of Madame Saint Ange. She is Eugenie's father's mistress. Other notable cast members include Paul Muller (Eugenie De Sade) as Eugenie's father, Jack Taylor (Succubus) as Madame Saint Ange's step brother, and Christopher Lee (Count Dracula) as Dolmance, who serves as a narrator for Eugenie's journey.

Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion gets a first-rate release from Blue Underground that comes with a CD with the score and a trio of informative extras, recommended.

It should be noted that Blue Underground has rereleased Eugenie... the Story of Her Journey into Perversion on Blu-ray, and this new release drops the DVD and CD that were part of the limited edition release.








Written by Michael Den Boer

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