The recent premiere of the film 50 Shades of Gray has once again put erotic cinema in the spotlight. There is no magazine, blog, TL or bar talk that does not bring this topic into their conversation. The phenomenon has been delirious. During the first week of its premiere we have seen how hysteria broke out in the queues of the cinemas and the theaters were packed. Sexshops have made a killing in the middle of February and, whether or not you are a fervent follower of the saga, everyone wants to know more about the sado phenomenon .

And yet, the adaptation leaves a lot to be desired. From the first installment in a saga that began as an erotic Eclipse fanfiction and has become the erotic companion of millions of women, it is so bland and so infertile that it has disappointed even the very fans. Generously described as a modern Jane Eyre for the Facebook generation, the film depicts desires that are more about love and social aspirations than anything else.

The film clearly shows how a submissive relationship develops – he adopts the role of “master”, she must accept her role of submissive – but strongly romanticized. It fulfills all the cliches of the Victorian romance, where an arrogant protagonist is seduced by a man with a dark character who saves her from danger and puts her on her black horse -in this case, a very cool helicopter- of hers to entertain her like an Arabian princess.

Theoretically, the story had all the necessary ingredients to make us leave the room with red cheeks and high libido. But in this case, the spectators leave the cinema as if they were one of those 50 shades that give the film its name, without grace or emotion.

The Duke of Burgundy (Peter Strickland, 2015)

the-duke-of-burgundy.jpgThe Duke of Burgundy A few months before the premiere of 50 Shades, this little gem appeared at the Toronto International Film Festival in which a couple of women explore the limits of dedication, passion and punishment.

With a Helmut Lang style, a diffuse setting between the 40s and 60s and a plot halfway between History of 0 and The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1972), Borgen fans will recognize Sidse Babett Knudsen, the Danish Prime Minister in the series, playing one of the protagonists.

Secretary (Steven Shainberg, 2002)

Secretary The mother of the lamb of modern domination, this sweet little indie flick might seem like an illegitimate child of Pretty Woman and Amelie if it weren’t for impeccable mise-en-scène, two highly underrated actors literally giving it their all, and an exquisitely sly tone that makes it irresistible. . Secretaria is erotic without being dirty, kinky without being awkward, and she’s downright funny, too. For all this and something else, she won the special jury prize at the Sundance Festival.

Emmanuelle 2, the anti-virgin (Francis Giacobetti, 1975)

Emmanuelle 2, the anti-virgin Released in 1974, the first adaptation of the scandalous novel by Emmauelle Arsan – actually the wife of a French diplomat stationed in Asia – was a rude and disturbing film that today seems like a documentary about sexual exploitation in French colonies , with gang rape included. And it was one of the highest-grossing films in French history. The only good thing that came out of it was its sequel, the beautiful Emmanuelle 2, The Anti-Virgin (1975).

With many times the budget of its predecessor, E2 was one of France’s biggest productions, with dazzling results. One of the keys to its success was the exquisite beauty of its protagonist, the Dutch model Sylvia Kristel, and the voluptuous photography, in love with Krystel and the rest of the Hong Kong beauties. 

Henry and June (Philip Kauffman, 1990)

Henry and June Based on one of the famous diaries of the delicate Anaïs Nin, Henry & June is set in Paris in the 1930s, where the American writer Henry Miller divides his energies between literature, prostitutes and the wife of a young man. banker named Anaïs Nin. His story of love and words is complicated by the arrival of his wife, the intense June Miller. Starring Uma Thurman, the film heats up several degrees when she enters the scene.

The Ages of Lulu (Bigas Luna, 1990)

The ages of Lulú Let’s go now with a film made in Spain. Based on the first novel by Almudena Grandes, which won the XI La Sonrisa Vertical Award, it is directed by Bigas Luna, the film tells us how Lulú grows and becomes a woman. Her relationship with Pablo, university professor, friend of her brother and initiator in the pleasures of the flesh, is the figure that feeds all her desire. When that relationship is lost, Lulu indulges in increasingly dark practices with strangers.

Crash (David Cronenberg, 1995)

Crash Again James Spader -the eternally perverse repressed-, this time under the command of a marriage made in seventh heaven. The morbid science fiction writer JG Ballard and his cinematographic better half David Cronenberg write a film that tastes of engine juice, dried blood and other fluids that are named in the novel and that are intuited in the film, to the delight of viewers. more sensitive. The thing revolves around a group of car accident fetishists who find themselves on the road, the carpet and the hood of their respective cars.

The Lover (Jean-Jacques Annaud, 1991)

The Lover Based on the most famous book by the intense and self-destructive Marguerite Duras, The Lover was an unprecedented scandal, not least thanks to the disturbing beauty of its protagonist, Jane March, who turned 18 after filming was finished. And it could have been worse, because in Duras’s autobiographical account the protagonist is poor, she is 14 years old and enters into an unequal relationship with a wealthy Chinese, with the opportunistic consent of her mother and her violent brother, in the context of Indochina French of 1929.