Choice: Film - Last Tango in Paris
Tuesday 10 March 1998
Even in the middle of a big mistake - Little Buddha, anyone? - there are moments in every Bertolucci film which are shockingly good. Even the miscast and frankly dodgy La Luna had some ravishing scenes, and while Stealing Beauty didn't exactly set the world on fire, the visuals certainly lived up to the title. Bertolucci shot to infamy in 1972 with Last Tango in Paris, which was celebrated and reviled across the world for its notorious sex scenes which brought the biggest news in dairy products since Little Miss Muffet. Although various countries argued about how many minutes were to be excised from the release prints, the film as a whole is considerably more than a succes de scandale. Some women have understandably taken exception to the fact that Maria Schneider's character is far less developed than Marlon Brando's, but the film's depiction and discussion of the immediacy and distance of sex is genuinely startling.
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