Salo Or 120 Days of Sodom (Blu-Ray) (Criterion Collection)

Directed By: Pier Paolo Pasolini Starring: Paolo Bonacelli

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A Very Disturbing Film

by Brian on 11/5/2015

This is one of the strangest and disturbing films that I have ever seen. It is set in Northern Italy in 1944, and it makes a good case while fascist Italy was never meant to succeed. Four government officials kidnap 16 young male and female "specimens" and bring them to a palatial estate complete with sadistic guards and servants as well as four middle-aged women who relate sexually arousing stories while the young people are subjected to degrading treatment, and while the fourth woman provides accompaniment on a piano. The stories are taken from the fanatical rantings of Dante and the Marquis De Sade. In the end, after the youths have "served their purpose," they are ritualistically executed. Did I say that this was a disturbing film?

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Product Overview


Studio Criterion Collection
SKU 223408291
UPC 715515087414
UPC 14 00715515087414
Format Blu-Ray DVD
Release Date 10/4/2011
Theatrical Release
World War II
Editors Note
Note Pier Paolo Pasolini was a celebrated poet, writer, and all-around intellectual, but it was his maverick, controversial filmmaking that distinguished him as an influential artistic force. The director's last film, 120 DAYS OF SODOM, an adaptation of the Marquis de Sade's 18th century novel, remains his most notorious (and most censored) due to its scenes of graphic rape and torture of adolescents. Pasolini relocates the novel's horrific abuses from France to the final days of Mussolini's reign, effectively rendering a grim portrait of the degradation of the human body and spirit beneath Fascist and Nazi rule.
New York Times "...[Pasolini's] most significant film....[Represents] the bitter, empty end." 10/11/1977 p.11
Sight and Sound "Pasolini's last film remains profoundly disturbing, its ideas about the commodification of bodies...and the absolute corruption of power resonating far further than its setting..." 11/01/2008 p.84
Total Film 4 stars out of 5 -- "[B]eneath the glacial cinematography and ornate tableaux writhes a terrifying warning about fascism, consumerism, violence and voyeurism..." 12/01/2008 p.146
Empire 3 stars out of 5 -- "A disturbing, necessary film, this makes a fascinating contrast with the current 'torture porn' cycle..." 11/01/2008 p.194
Pier Paolo Pasolini
Paolo Bonacelli
Cast & Crew
Paolo Bonacelli - Star
Giorgio Cataldi - Featured
Ennio Morricone - Composer
Caterina Boratto - Featured
Umberto P. Quinavalle - Featured
Aldo Valletti - Featured
Pier Paolo Pasolini - Director
Technical Info
Original Release Date 1975
UPC 00715515087414
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 116 minutes
Color Color
Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
Product Attributes
Video Format Blu-Ray

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A Very Disturbing Film by Brian on Nov 05, 2015