Sunday, November 3, 2013

Jess Franco heats up The Hot Nights of Linda

Click to BUY FROM AMAZON
Director: Jess Franco

Cast: Lina Romay, Alice Arno, Paul Muller

Severin Films / All Region / Unrated / 2.35:1 widescreen / DTS-HD mono / 80 minutes

Extras: Interview: Hot Nights - Exclusive Interview With Director Jess Franco / Interview(s): Jess and Lina Talk LINDA - Exclusive Interview With Director Jess Franco and Star Lina Romay / Fantasticfest Lifetime Achievement Award Presentation To Jess Franco / NIGHTMARE USA/BEYOND TERROR Author Stephen Thrower On LINDA / Outtakes / Original theatrical trailer

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I've watched quite a bit of Jess Franco's work lately due to outstanding home video companies digging up some of his more obscure work. The last few have been pretty good and with his reputation of being uneven at best, that's saying a lot. They have mostly starred pretty much the same cast of Franco favorites, especially Alice Arno and his most lovely "significant other", Lina Romay. How to Seduce a Virgin and Countess Perverse were most welcome additions to my collection and now I get a little-known, ultra-sleazy Franco slice on high-definition Blu-ray from Severin Films entitled The Hot Nights of Linda!

Alice Arno plays Marie, a caregiver hired to take care of a paralyzed girl by the name of Linda. The house belongs to Paul, Linda's father, who has a mute servant named Abdul and his niece Olivia (Romay) who also lives in the home. Marie gets to know everyone a little and before long the dirty little secrets of the family begin to rise. Paul killed a man who he caught banging his wife and somehow (I either missed it or it wasn't addressed) his wife also died, and Linda is the "fruit of that sin". Lots of sexual escapades ensue since Linda is a virgin nymphomaniac (?) and apparently this family doesn't have very good sexual boundaries in the incest department. The incestual epitome comes in the film's final act.

The Hot Nights of Linda is a real treat for Franco and Eurosleaze fans. The title card for this version (apparently there are ten according to Jess himself) names the movie But Who Raped Linda? which fits the bill a bit better as Linda really doesn't really have any "hot nights" but she is, indeed, raped. The poor girl can't move and people are taking advantage of her all over the place! With the murders and other heavy tones, Franco introduces a little comedy into the mix in the form of a police inspector (comedic actor Angelo Bassi) and a sexy newspaper photographer who are investigating the death of Paul's wife by spying on the house like a couple of creeps. As per usual, the story is a little disjointed and somewhat dreamy.



Severin's Blu-ray is fantastic and surprising due to the obscurity of the movie. The new HD transfer looks great with minor picture damage–which is expected–and Franco's penchant for soft focus is also apparent but the colors are gorgeous and the rest of the film looks great. There is an extra DVD included in the 3-Disk Blu-ray/DVD combo that features an almost unwatchable cut of Linda with hardcore scenes inserted dubbed the "Banana Version", more on that in a moment. The interviews with Franco and Romay are engaging as always with the couple chain-smoking throughout and giving us fabulous insight into the actors and actresses as well as working together on The Hot Nights of Linda, although they could have used more subtitles.

Regarding the "Banana Version"; the picture quality is terrible with some scenes so dark that you have to guess what is happening. Fortunately, what is happening for the most part is Lina Romay having hardcore sex with the various characters of the film. This cut gets its name from a scene where Olivia (Lina) is, in essence, raping the paralyzed Linda with a, you guessed it, banana. She also sits on the poor girl's face for a forced "69"! Romay also fucks and sucks Abdul, the tongueless wonder and, in the hottest scene, has some awesome lesbian time with Alice Arno's character. Arno has an Amazonian body that just won't quit. It's so awesome that Severin decided to add this to the set as a bonus. It's almost like watching a completely different movie! Pick up this set before the bonus disc goes bye-bye!

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