Well! The case informs us that “Former Miss Bahamas, Josephine Jacqueline Jones spraked an international firestorm with her debut starring role as Venus.” I guess I must have slept through that firestorm. At any rate, this tale, “based on the scandalous story by Honor’ de Balzac” (but then, Tower of the Screaming Virgins is “based on the novel by Alexandre Dumas”), is narrated in flashback by an elderly gentlemen who frequents a brothel, and sees the title character there. The film tells of her journeys through decadent 19th-Century society.This is a Harry Alan Towers production, so one expects it to be a low-budget but still handsome-enough (though sleazy) period piece. And that’s what we have. The costumes and sets are nice, well above the usual softcore romp. The acting, though, is also what you’d expect, with the lines declaimed from memory rather than actually delivered. And the score is a Hooked On Classics effort that at first adds tone, but then comes off as pretty cheap itself.
The mono is decent. Given that we’re dealing with a 20+-year-old bit of exploitation, nothing miraculous should be expected, and certainly none is delivered. It’s acceptable, and one listens without cringing too much, but that’s about all one can say.
The colours, when they’re good, are very good. They’re very rich, with lovely reds and blacks. But the quality fluctuates quite a bit. The picture is grainy and very soft, as if the camera lens were covered with a film. Edge enhancement, at least, isn’t a problem. But to top things off, the aspect ratio is fullscreen, which I doubt very highly was how the film appeared in the theatres.
Handsomely shot as these things go, but they only go so far.