An X-rated church homily, 17 March 2000
Author: Richard_Harland_Smith ([email protected]) from New York, NY
“Because Paris is Paris,” Swedish art history student Astrid Frank thumbs her way to the City of Lights with nothing more on her shoulders than a guitar case and a pair of blonde braids. When her friendliness is interpreted by a series of sexual predators as an open invitation to Swedish “free love,” Greta retreats into a lesbian relationship with the affluent but lonely Nicole Debonne – but eventually tires of the older woman’s possessiveness (“It disgusts me!”) and sets her sights on the boytoy (Frederic Sakiss) of a celebrated gay painter (Yves Vincent) – with calamitous results.
Because CLAUDE ET GRETA (filmed as LES LIAISONS PARTICULIÈRES, it opened in Paris in 1970 as CLAUDE ET GRETA, but is now available on video as HER AND SHE AND HIM) was distributed by Radley Metzger, it begs comparison to a Radley Metzger production. Although director Max Pécas displays a painterly eye and occasional erotic gusto, his characters lack the depth that Metzger reliably brought to both his high living and lowdown sensualists. Worse yet, his script (co-written with Michel Ressi) depicts its homosexual characters as neurotic and borderline psychotic, while the two young innately hetero lovebirds are etched as innocents turned away from their destiny at the altar by the decadent allure of same sex relationships. “