Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 359: Thu Dec 28

Desert Hearts (Deitch, 1985): Genesis Cinema, 6.45pm


Genesis Cinema introduction:
As part of our #DirectedByWomen2017 season, which will see us screening 52 films by female directors across the whole of 2017 in association with the F-Rating and Bechdel Test Film Fest, and in collaboration with Film London, we proudly present .... DESERT HEARTS. This screening has been brought to you as a partnership with Criterion Collection who will be giving away 5 Blu-ray copies of the film to the five first to book a pair of tickets!


Chicago Reader review:
I guess you're supposed to like this 1985 movie because it strikes all the right attitudes about lesbian sex; it's set in the 50s to make all of the 80s platitudes look revolutionary, and in the southwest to allow some fun with twangy regional accents and dippy local yokels. In an opening deliberately reminiscent of The Women, a tweedy, uptight professor of literature (Helen Shaver) arrives at a Nevada dude ranch to establish residency for a quickie divorce; her eye is caught by swaggering cowgirl Patricia Charbonneau, and she spends most of the rest of the film trying to rationalize the strange urge that possesses her. Mercifully, when the sex scene does finally arrive, it's good, steamy stuff, but director Donna Deitch is hopelessly clunky when it comes to getting her characters to talk—and they talk, and talk, and talk. Clipping that one scene is all it would take to qualify Desert Hearts as one of those “controversial” TV movies. Viewer discretion is indeed advised, on more than one level.
Dave Kehr

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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