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ANATOMY OF HELL
aka ANATOMIE DE L'ENFER
USA: Vitagraph Films
UK: Tartan Films
Cast: Amira Casar, Rocco Siffredi, Alexandre Belin, Manuel Taglang, Jacques Monge, Claudio Carvalho, Carolina Lopes, Diego Rodrigues, JoAo Marques, Bruno Fernandes, Maria Edite Moreira, Maria JoAo Santos, Pauline Hunt, Catherine Breillat
Director: Catherine Breillat
Language: French (English subtitles)
USA: 80 mins
UK: 87 mins
UK Certificate: 18 contains strong sexual detail and strobing effects
USA Release Date: 24 September 2004 (Limited Release - Los Angeles)
USA Release Date: 17 September 2004 (Limited Release - New York)
UK Release Date: 26 November 2004
ANATOMY OF HELL is an audacious exploration into the nature of a fundamentally social and religious taboo: sexuality. Catherine Breillat, writer/director of the internationally award-winning FAT GIRL aka a MA SOEUR! and the controversial ROMANCE, once again dissects female sexuality and takes us between the walls of obscenity and objectification, pushing us to the edge with lyrical provocation and equally poetic cinematography.
In places where people rub shoulders and never meet, where techno drives physical urge, they dance, sway and blend in a primeval hydra of male bodies. In their sudden, shared desire, it's just men, with no need of anyone else. She is the Girl, breathtakingly beautiful and totally overlooked. In a toilet stall, she cuts her wrists with a razor blade. Two thin, parallel lines that converge in blood. That's how they meet.
He doesn't like women. She will pay him to watch, she says.
- Where I'm unwatchable.
- It'll cost you a lot.
- I'll pay you.
Four nights. In a house in the middle of nowhere, perched on a cliff, the front steps topped by four pillars.
Four nights of confrontation, her against him.
For the obscenity of women takes shape in men's eyes.
Four nights to confront the unspeakable, to explore what can't be shown: that which is secret.
As in the Hebrew of the Book of Genesis in which "secret" is the same word as "nudity", literally "that which must not be seen".
When physical nudity penetrates the nudity of the soul, it reveals awareness. The intimate is the ultimate forbidden, that leaves you lost for words.