Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Emanuelle on Taboo Island (1976)

Character Name: Haydee
Actress: Laura Gemser
Actual Movie Title: La Spiaggia del Desiderio
Known Aliases: A Beach Called Desire, Emanuelle on Taboo Island
Country of Origin: Italy
Character Nationality: Islander
Occupation: None
Married: No
Locales: Unidentified island
Release Date: 1976
Directors: Enzo D'Ambrosio, Humberto Morales
DVD: Emmanuelle on Taboo Island (1976)
Stats: Pseudo-Emanuelle

Story: Daniel (Paolo Giusti) is a heroin addict who shoots up with a group at a beach. He wakes up to find one of the girls has overdosed, freaks out, and steals a small boat. In his addled state, Daniel nearly has a wreck, and ends up conking his head on the engine. He wakes up adrift at sea for an indefinite period before paddling to a small, seemingly deserted island. Daniel struggles to survive on native grubs and the odd fruit. Left cold turkey, he hallucinates during his detoxification. He tries to signal a plane by writing "S O S" in large letters with leaves along the beach. I don't recall a word of dialogue being spoken for about fifteen minutes.

Daniel stumbles upon Haydee (Laura Gemser) and Juan (Nicola Paguone,) young siblings living in rags and a bamboo shack. The pair were raised from birth on the island by their father Antonio (Arthur Kennedy,) and are ignorant of the outside world. When Antonio finds Daniel with his kids, he demands the newcomer stop trying to attract outside attention, and to stay away from his home. Haydee and Juan begin spending time with Daniel on his beach, teaching him to fish and other necessities of survival. Daniel teaches the siblings about the mainland.

Antonio takes some amusement in this, and enjoys the bottle of booze Daniel brought with him. He reminisces about the wife who'd joined him on the island for a time, and who was just like their daughter, but "prettier."

Daniel is a friend to Juan and a perfect gentleman with Haydee, even when she runs around topless. That is, until he catches the siblings playing a game they like that we would refer to as "dry humping." Appalled but detecting fair game, Daniel paid Haydee a late night visit. Off on the beach, Daniel takes a fully nude Haydee and sucks on her tit. And sucks. And sucks. Don't get me wrong, it's a marvelous tit, but after a while thoughts move out of the erotic and into the domestic. Daniel was like a suckling baby, or the serial killer from "Angel" that would drain the tip of an egg until it caved in on itself. After minutes of this, there's some more kissing on the mouth, a cut to waves crashing on the rocks, and then the return to the spent couple.

The next morning, Antonio catches the pair asleep, and expresses mild displeasure. Daniel happens to spy a fishing boat, and makes arrangements with a fisherman to leave the island. However, Daniel's still sick from detox, and Haydee is potent medicine, so he opts to stay on a bit longer.

Juan brings a rusted out rifle of his father's to Daniel, who pleases Antonio by fixing it. Antonio agrees to allow Daniel another month on his island. Juan, Daniel and Haydee continue to bond, especially the latter two. Haydee remembers funny tribal stories her mother used to tell. Daniel sucks and squeezes on Haydee's tit for a really long time some more. Again, it's a swell tit, but it's connected to Laura Gemser, whose body is a wonderland. It's like going to an extravagant buffet and eating only cantaloupe. The trouble with Laura Gemser is in your not having mouths and hands enough to reach everywhere simultaneously. Heroin was the least of this guy's worries.

The fisherman returns with gasoline for Daniel's boat, so that he can leave whenever he wishes. He takes a watch in trade. Haydee stops playing the "game" with her brother, and he's pretty put out by it. Juan hates the player. "She won't say no to Antonio. Haydee doesn't dare to tell him that." Daniel catches Antonio whipping Haydee bloody for doing just that. "I should have cut your throat the first day you got here, but there's still time." Antonio comes at Daniel with a machete. Juan refuses to help, even at Haydee's urging. Antonio bashes Daniel's head against a rock. Haydee hugs Antonio's knees to beg for her lover's life. Both tear up.

The next day, Daniel prepares to leave. Antonio will be finished if Daniel informs the guards at San Rafael of Antonio's whereabouts. Antonio sends Juan to kill Daniel, but Haydee overhears and warns him. Daniel gets the drop on Juan. Antonio tries to hack Daniel from behind. The father slips off a cliff and falls to his death. Juan builds him a funeral pyre, then gives Haydee to Daniel to take with him to the mainland. Haydee thinks the fisherman will bring a girl back for Juan, who can trade coral for profit. Daniel agrees, but knows the girls will run out when the coral does. Daniel can't bear to take Haydee to the awful world he knows, nor leave Juan alone, so he refuses Haydee and returns unescorted.

Summation: Not only is this a VHS transfer, but it's a bad one. There's a minimal menu screen, and the movie's picture is heavily pixilated. You could do better at home with one of those transfer decks they sell at Wall*Mart. I'm also pretty confident this version has been edited, as there are some choppy cuts.

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