Three bold explorations sexual encounters are worth revisiting.
|TEN CENTS A DANCE (PARALLAX) (1985)
“Also, the scenes as they are cut together form a progression. The first scene is the negotiation. The second scene is the sex act. The third scene is an abstracted version of the sex act. Three different levels of communication. So you see, in that light, it would have been totally illogical for me to start by having the two women in bed, proceed to two men in bed and to end with a man and woman in bed.”
“Confusion, underlying meaning and unspoken truths are often associated with the dialectic of sexual communication. Mingled with the intensity and unpredictability of a “one night stand,” they generate unique sensations – mixed emotion, risk, and excitement. The film employs formal devices in a manner that is exceedingly simple, yet very effective. Its subject matter, sexuality and communication, gains depth and poignancy through the artist’s decision to shoot the film’s three scenes for projection in a “double screen” configuration. By this means, Onodera finds an elegant solution to dealing with the potentially sensationalist subject matter of her film. The separation which the two screen projection imposes on the film’s viewing is the touching evocation of the aloneness which is the common experience of all humans and of the space between us we hope to bridge.”
if you are lost… this synopsis by davisprof from 2004 on imdb helps you picture the content and the form: “Ten Cents a Dance (from a Rogers & Hart song sung by a dancer/prostitute) explores three sexual interactions in three ten-minute segments. In the first a lesbian and bisexual woman discuss the possibility of sex over dinner at a Japanese restaurant. In the second two gay men have (simulated, PG-rated) sex in a public toilet. In the final segment a man calls a sex phone line and gets off. His female phone partner talks dirty but actually ignores him, painting her nails and lying about her appearance. These somewhat cynical accounts are very funny in presenting the ranges of failed love. They are also photographed spectacularly. The subtitle Parallax refers to the shift in image when cameras look from two slight different directions. Each of the three segments is a single take without cuts, filmed by two cameras, not quite on the same sight line. These slightly off images are then projected together on a split screen. The chaste image contrasts beautifully with the varying degrees of lust portrayed in the scenes. A beautiful, hilarious, and finally thought-provoking film.”
“Recent film writing and theory have suggested that the basic condition of cinema is voyeurism — an exchange of seeing and being seen — so that the cinema manages to be both exhibitionist and secretive. These active and passive components of voyeurism, which are part of the cinema in general, are the focus of Variety. [… the protagonist, Christine, works in a ticket booth to a porno theatre …] We never see the pornographic movies; we hear only Christine’s description. […]There is no representation of Christine having sex in the film. She has sex by speaking it and by voyeuristically following the patron. She describes what she sees on the screen at first, but goes on to describe what she wants to see, constructed from her own desire. (“Variety: The Pleasure in Looking” in Pleasure and Danger: Exploring Female Sexuality)
|Described in the novel Fear of Flying (1973)
“The zipless fuck is absolutely pure. It is free of ulterior motives. There is no power game.”
If you stay with the protagonist and her adventures, you come to believe that the Zipless Fuck is a Kantian notion subject to the many distorting effects of empirical conditions. Of course every good discussion has a sequel: How to Save Your Own Life.
And so for day 1671