PT and his screenwriter Raven Touchstone push the boundaries (pardon the overused cliche, as here it is justified for once) of Adult Cinema with this underrated classic.
Raven's script has the convoluted structure of those mainstream hits like "Crash" and "Babel" (both newer than this one), and as PT points out in the DVD's BTS short subject, a structure well-suited to erotic cinema.
Film limns the story of four couples whose relationships are crumbling, with overlapping incidents concerning the characters shown out of sequence and with flashbacks to gradually flesh out an overall portrait of an alt- subculture in L.A.
As is often the case with Vivid videos of this era, the contract superstar is not necessarily the star of the film, though it was merchandised on her name. Dasha certainly provides the sexuall power that made her a star (plus that beautiful face and body) but she is the least interesting of the four female leads.
She plays a Czech "mail order bride", arriving with no English speaking ability for Eric Masterson to hump rather than communicate with. She turns out to be a phony, when two comrades from the old country (Anthony Hardwood and Mario Rossi) show up on Eric's doorstep and turn out to be nasty criminals in league with Dasha.
Dasha does not even show up on screen until halfway through the picture, sort of a reverse on Hitchcock's famous use of Janet Leigh as star only in the first part of "Psycho". Instead we begin with a strong performance by Holly Hollywood as a put-upon wife to mysterious Alec Metro (the term metrosexual might have been coined for this handsome Adult actor, who oddly resembles the iconic Tony Almeida (played by Carlos Bernard) of "24" TV series fame.
Alec believes in taking dangerous risks, sexually that is, and forces Holly to do the same. At one point he has her impersonate a streetwalker in the middle of the night, fully nude, only to have her get busted by passing cop Rod Fontana. Holly's sexual travails are strong stuff, and her acting up to snuff.
Fontana's story is the final one, starring vulnerable looking Violet Blue as his bored housewife who, like Metro, is after kicks. Violet, who IMDb oddly insists as listing officially as "No Name Jane" as her screen (alternate) moniker, underplays and virtually steals the picture in a sensitive yet uninhibited performance.
Remaining couple has the showiest and lengthy segment in the middle of the picture, but carrying less impact once all the story threads have been knitted together. Rebecca Love, so familiar from her many crossover roles in soft-core porn co-starring with the likes of Voodoo, Nicole Sheridan and Beverly Lynne for crapmeister director Fred Olen Ray, presents her massive bazooms as the free-wheeling wife of Metro's chauffeur Tony Tedeschi.
Love appears at wild parties and clearly Tony is happy she's bringing in extra money to the household, but he proves repeatedly to be a hothead when confronted with her going too far, in what amounts to prostitution. Sexually this is solid content for Vivid from PT, but the least convincing element in Raven's story structure.
I was especially thrilled to see PT casting as lookalikes (for threeome sex) the great Brit Porn icons Angel Long and lesser-known Ashley Long, who I have often confused for each other as a viewer and as fellow 6-feet-tall femmes go perfectly together here.
Shooting on film and working with a 9-day shooting schedule, "The 8th Sin" (code name "Narc" is listed on the clapperboards instead, would likely be impossible to make in today's all-sex porn climate. (No wonder that PT has retired from the porn wars.) It would be instructive viewing for today's big-name Adult directors, like Lansky, Mason and Alan, to see how eroticism is generated by characters/story and convincing acting, not just by gonzo repetition of explicit sex.
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