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Delta of Venus
Delta of Venus
Actors: Audie England, Costas Mandylor, Eric Da Silva, Raven Snow, Rory Campbell
Genres: Drama
R     2003     1hr 39min

Based on Anais Nin's pre-WWII book. The lead character is an eager American writer with sex on her twentysomething mind, either as voyeur or as a participant.


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Movie Details

Actors: Audie England, Costas Mandylor, Eric Da Silva, Raven Snow, Rory Campbell
Genres: Drama
Sub-Genres: Drama
Studio: New Line Home Video
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 11/04/2003
Original Release Date: 10/13/1995
Theatrical Release Date: 10/13/1995
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 39min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 14
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

A flowing, beautiful, and delightfully erotic film.
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Those who are familiar with Zalman King know that he is one of the few directors who is able to create erotically stimulating films without sacrificing production quality, cinemtography and acting. Delta of Venus is, in my opinion, his greatest accomplishment as the film flows with poetic motion, draws sumptuous romanticism from its setting in pre-World War II Paris, offers a lovely musical soundtrack, and excites the viewer with beautiful actors who interact with splendid chemistry.If you are looking for a simple sex film or a picture exploding with action, this is not the film for you. It moves at a purposefully slow pace, like generous foreplay, leading the audience through a series of visual and auditory climaxes. It will appeal mostly to women, but also to men who delight in the slow, attentive pleasuring of a woman.Although the R-rated version of the movie is well worth seeing, it does not compare to the unrated copy, which bursts with scenes that will propel any couple into a torrid evening of lovemaking."
Evelyn O. Simon | South Florida. U.S.A. | 11/15/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Delta of Venus was superb. Elana Martin: (Audie England) was a beautiful American writer of erotica who lived in paris. She falls in love with an impecably handsome French novelist of erotica named Lawrence, played by: (Costas Mandylor). This sensual erotic, heart pulsating, thrilling to the senses movie, will leave you in a world wind of passion & emotions. When Lawrence left for N.Y., he kept tabs on Elana through her publisher. He became an anonymous reader of her writings, criticizing the lack of detailed sex in her stories. Still not knowing the identity of the anonymous reader, she continue to strive to do her best in her writings, by experiencing and viewing many kinds of sexual liaisons. After she mastered the art, he congradulated her. Lawrence returned to paris to reveal his love for her. He soon learned that Elana wasn't the same shy girl he had left. The wild passion she experienced in her sexual awakenings, erupt all over Lawrence just before her swift departure from paris. A true love story. I recommend it."
Not for the faint of heart
Mr D. | 12/18/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This movie, as with all of Zalman King's, has its weaknesses, but of them all, this is the best. I never fail to find it empowering, beautiful, envigorating, and, of course, scintillating to watch. Very few of this type of movie reach an emotional level as well as a physical level, and as such, very few are truly aimed at the thinking and feeling woman. Even Red Shoes and the Wild Orchid series (don't forget Shades of Blue) miss at times and sink to the common standard of male oriented meaningless sex. This movie, based on a novel that is about nothing but the meaning of sexual exploration and emotional risk, rises far above the norm to be a cornerstone in any woman's video library. Anais Nin would have been pleased."
Down in the 'Delta'
TheLover | In the Realm of the Senses | 06/23/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"We should start by making one thing clear: the films of Zalman King have no basis in reality whatsoever; they're erotic fantasies, pure and simple. How else to explain his casting choices for the leading roles in his films: Carrie Otis, Sherilyn Fenn, David Duchovony, Richard Tyson, Bridgette Bako, etc. People in real life seldom have the sex appeal of the above-mentioned names.

And then there are the stories that cloak these fine specimens, which almost always involve a young innocent woman led down a road of sexual discovery, usually by a domineering though charming man, who she's secretly lusted after for sometime. What King's films lack in dramatic verve, they make up for by hitting their intended target: your libido.

Critics pounced like never before on his feature film adaptation of Anais Ninn's erotic classic,'Delta of Venus.' But
they clearly missed the point, as 'Delta of Venus' isn't so much a feature film, as it is the most epic, most visually beautiful episode of King's 90s Showtime series, 'Red Shoe Diaries.' In that context, it succeeds at its fairly modest goals.

Set in 1940s Paris, 'Venus' introduces us to an aspiring writer named Elena (Audie England). In what appears to be a morning ritual, she rushes to the banks of the Sienne in the bitter January cold, with a muted urgency, for one thing: to watch the handsome Lawrence (Costas Mandylor)--a man she's yet to meet---row through the foggy river.

It isn't too long before she meets Lawrence at a party thrown by her agent, Marcel (Eric Da Silva), and discovers Lawrence is also a writer, with a thriving, if controversial career. He is, in fact, about to leave France for an American tour in support of his latest effort---but not before a whirlwind affair with Elena, which has far more profound effect on her than she could have ever imagined.

With Lawrence gone, no money, and no luck getting her stories published, Elena's crew of friends---an artist, a singer, and their same-sex lovers---suggest Elena model nude for cash. But Marcel's got a more lucrative idea: she could write explict sex stories for nameless collector of erotica, who'll pay her handsomely for it. Ulitmately, Elena accepts BOTH offers, and when the collector, through Marcel, insists on graphic realism in her stories, she ups the ante in her own sex life, fullfilling her desperate "desire to plunge into living" and be "capable of many loves."

Audie England's performance as Elena was unfairly panned. She isn't a great actress, but she does have just the right mix of doe-eyed innocence, restless intelligence, and raw sensuality bubbling just beneath the surface to make her believeable. Her initial scenes with Mandylor are mildly touching, as we see her teeter between school-girl crush and burning womanly desire. If nothing else, she's at least a marked improvement over the woozy Carrie Otis in 'Wild Orchid.' Take that how you may. And Costas Mandylor really isn't in this movie much, but he makes the most of what there is. The two have a chemistry, without which 'Delta of Venus' would really have been as terrible as critics have said.

Granted, King doesn't always hit the mark in 'Delta'--a sequence set at a party in St. Tropez is particularly irritating and his reach in themes does seem to overextend his grasp. There are definitely points at which the dialogue does seem strain to capture Nin's prose. Critics also complained that this film simply doesn't reflect the reality of life in 1940s France. (Ugh.)

But to counter that, go back to the top of this review and read the first sentence again. Are you really expecting Zalman King to give you the blow-by-blow of Hitler's invasion of France? If you're going in to this simply to watch an interesting love story--and be turned on by the beautiful cinematography, gorgeous actors, and atmospheric lushness--you will not be disappointed. And fans of the TV show 'Lost' fans will get a kick out of a cameo made by Adewale Akinnoyue-Agbaje as a mysterious clairvoyant who gives a...special reading to a redheaded prostitute."