Anchor Bay Entertainment has released what is probably the most recognized “X-Rated” film series, on dvd. “EMMANUELLE”, though “X-Rated” bears little resemblance to any of the “X-rated” films that have come out since. While the film series struggles with its intended “story-line”, it actually tries harder to have a plot than most adult films. Sylvia Kristel stars as the title character, the wife of a French diplomat. While in Asia, her naïvete is changed, when she’s exposed to the open sexuality/culture of Thailand. As already mentioned, this is not like a hardcore film of today.
The film series strives to be erotic, offering nudity but holding back from explicit sex scenes. The fact that Emmanuelle’s husband actually encourages her to become educated by taking on various lovers, is an attempt to make the film appear “provocative” in spite of its soft-core atmosphere.
ANCHOR BAY ENTERTAINMENT has done a spectacular job in remastering these titles. The image is extremely sharp, and colors are solid in every instance. Contrast is fine, with great detail in darker scenes. Fleshtones appear natural.
ANCHOR BAY ENTERTAINMENT has been remastering many of their releases in Dolby Digital 5.1. Surprisingly, only the monaural track is featured here. While not a great mix, fidelity is decent, making the horrible “over-the-top” score more bearable. This is a case when the English dubbed version is recommended over the foreign version, not due to the acting voices, but due to more entertaining dialogue than conveyed in the subtitled version.
ANCHOR BAY has included a featurette for each film, offering interviews with its star, producers and separate directors of each film. It’s nostalgic and entertaining.