GENRE: Straight Compilation
DIRECTORS: Halle Vanderhyden
STARS: Kimberly Kane, Anthony Hardwood, Charlie Lane, Penny Flame, Lily Thai, Kurt Lockwood, Melissa Loren, Brett Rockman, Scott Lyons, Halley, Mick Blue
DATES OF PRODUCTION: 2004
LENGTH: 134 mins with bonus material
It's that time again. Time to find another categorization for the ever-expanding facets of porn. When last we tried to determine a title for a certain style of sex, we came up with PPP, or Plain, Pretty and Passive adult material. Such a rating was warranted for those movies that tried nothing more than to show attractive people going through the suck and fuck motions. With the ever-increasing feminization of XXX, where fantasy and fashion rule over the rude and raunchy, another new classification needs to be prepared to describe the level of action included. Hardcore has a specific meaning – what you are going to see is real life prick and pussy pounding. Softcore is all about suggestion and pushing the envelope of late night pay cable acceptability. But creating a new taxonomy for films, and filmmakers, who walk the thin line between hard and soft with supermodel assurance seems tricky. While we could employ a 'three bears' ideal and call such slices of smut "just right", a better title would be normcore. Not so heavy as to cause hernias or internal damage, but not so tame that Cinemax is cueing up to buy the rights, normcore titles play both sides of sleaze toward the middle of the road to present adult entertainment that is exciting and erotic as well as tame and tasteful. Even the sequences of double penetration are played for passion, not pubic pulverizing power. A foundational title for such a cinematic standard may exist in the Ninn Worx DVD Halle Vanderhyden's Innocence: Baby Blue. More like a photo shoot with sex positions for the poses, this beautiful, serene scene compilation defines the very essence of our new declension. So haute couture that it's like looking into one of Coco Channel's wet dreams, this highly stylized scene compilation should be far more arousing than it ends up being. And it's all normcore's fault.
We begin with a stark white, high gloss set. As evocative music begins to play, a large couch covered in high contrast purple cloth appears in the space and begins to rotate. We watch as the fixture moves in several atmospheric dissolves. Then our actress fades in, like an image from a fantasy. Over a series of jump cuts, she takes several positions and performs a bit of cabaret and vamping. Finally, she speaks to the camera and confesses that she needs someone to fuck the fancy shit out of her. Enter a partner of either sex and the heated humping begins. Almost every one of the six scenes featured here starts out this way. Sure, the couch changes to a red chair and in one instance, very little is said directly to the audience. Similar to a live sex act setting, we are given this hyper-realistic backdrop to allow the attractive aspects of the film to shine through. Individually, the scenes offered provide the following stylized sexcapades:
Scene 1: Kimberly Kane, Anthony Hardwood
Looking for someone to "play" with her, Kimberly does a lot of seductive shuck and jive for the camera. She begins an aggressive session of masturbation. There are lots of close ups on body parts, finger licking and 'come hither' stares made directly into the camera. Suddenly, Anthony appears and agrees to satisfy her itch. There is intense kissing and fondling. Tony trots to the twat and eats Kim out with abandon...and with a couple of forceful fingers inserted into cunt. Kim loves tasting herself and thanks Mr. Hardwood with a rather unrelenting blowjob. There is lots of ball and shaft action, and while Anthony has some stiffness issues, he does manage to fuck Kim's face and get her to deep throat his tool. The fucking begins as Anthony takes Ms. Kane from behind and gives her a diddling, doggy style. Then they perform the standard compliment to backdoor bowwow, reverse cowgirl and finish off with very heavy straight sex. Anthony pops his carnal cork all over Kim's face and we witness this money moment from two different angles and in slow motion instant replay (it's the same for every cum cascade in the film). The very essence of normcore is personified in this decent, erotic entry between Kim and Anthony. Both performers are attractive and aggressive. The sex is stimulating and the passion dynamic between the couple is palpable.
But the problem comes in Vanderhyden's direction. The revolving couch wipes out much of the penetration footage and there are several times when the actors are giving it there all and the camera is concentrating on some overly fancy film work. This may be one of the rare cases where more care and concern should have been taken for what the lens captures and not on the surreal set design. Also, the direct play to the home audience feels a tad too "lonely geek" oriented. Not everyone is sitting in their living room, hand in his or her pants, waiting to interact with a porn star. Score: 7/10
Scene 2: Charlie Lane
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In a solo sequence, Charlie does the standard stripper moves and pouts for the camera before getting down to one-handed histrionics. With a decidedly naughty little girl persona, Ms. Lane steams up the screen with her autoerotic stimulation. By the end, when she's sticking and licking her juicy digits, there'll be guys at home who want to try some of that secret recipe themselves. In many ways, it's nice to see a gal go at it without benefit of ornate glass dildo or dramatic mechanical device. Charlie is very fetching and her touchy-feely routine goes over well – even if she spends far too long in direct conversation with the camera. Score: 7.5/10
Scene3: Charlie Lane, Penny Flame
Some chauvinist once said that, when you get a couple of girls together, they never stop flapping their gums. Well, any one looking to verify that non-PC complaint can simply watch Charlie and Penny chew the fat as they celebrate Sappho in a talky, torrid lesbian scene. There is a great deal of kissing, tit play and ass fondling between the females, and when they get down to bush business, they really teach the men a thing or two about twat teasing. But unable to leave both the conversation and sex toy well enough alone, an intricate hand blown dildo comes out of hiding and begins a royal ramming of both gals – as the lack of internal monologue continues. The single strangest element in this entire film is, again, how these ladies play to the camera. While snacking on each other's snatches, they constantly comment on how the "men" would be so much better at partaking pussy. And while this is supposed to be super hot girl-on-girl action, there is a definite lukewarm lipstick Lesbos feel to the scene. The gals are game, but the hair pie slickness grows weary. Score: 5.5/10
Scene 4: Lily Thai, Kurt Lockwood WOW! What a scene. The best on the disc, bar none. Lily is a mixed race minx with a tiny, tight body and Kurt really knows how to load the log, if you know what I mean. Together with director Vanderhyden's far more fluent camera work (much better here than in other scenes) the passion pours from every orifice and out across the digital domain. After the standard flesh floorshow, Ms. Thai tickles her twat while fading in and out of the shot. When Kurt enters, the two immediately get down to business. There is a visit to Connie the linguist with lots of finger fidgeting and digit savoring. Kurt even smacks the cunt up a little and produces lots of spit for extra succulence. Lily's laudatory head is incredible, offering the very definition of manhandling. After all the oral action is over, Lily climbs on top for a very long, very rough and very vocal sequence of reverse cowgirl. Begging for Kurt to fuck her harder, Ms. Thai builds until she unleashes a series of healthy squirts all over the constantly pumping prick. As the wanton waterfall continues, Mr. Lockwood keeps the lumber laden. Finally, the couple engages in some sensual straight sex with Lily giving a grateful groin some mons to mouth maneuvers. Kurt finally concedes and sprays his seed across Ms. Thai's tongue. A near perfect scene, expertly choreographed and captured with real style and grace. While Mr. Lockwood's prison style tattoos can be distracting, he is an excellent match with Lily and the two really turn up the heat on this DVD. Score: 10/10
Scene 5: Melissa Loren, Brett Rockman, Scott Lyons
It's double penetration time as Melissa takes on Brett first, then allows Scott to join in the randy rear-end reindeer games. In a strange shift from the other scenes, once she is done with Brett, she is shown clothed again, giving Scott the same striptease come-on. With Mr. Rockman, Ms. Loren performs oral, engages in some so-so 69 and enjoys a little regular cowgirl. When Scott shows up, she blows him as well and indulges the other variation of range riding, this time in the rump. When we get to the double Dutch dumper and douche delving, Melissa takes it from both guys, in both inputs, while back in the regular saddle sore position. Amazingly, both men seem to be able to freely pump Ms. Loren's loins with rapid-fire ferocity. They end up delivering their non-dairy creamer all over her waiting mouth. Normcore gets its first DP extravaganza in what is a rather derivative scene. A bed is substituted for the other various rotating furnishings and the mostly mobile four-poster is very limiting. The copulation either occurs on or around it, and then it's either filmed straight on or from above. Most of the fault here lies with Melissa. She never really connects with her partners, becoming more or less a fuck doll for the filling. Score: 6/10
Scene 6: Halley, Mick Blue
Halley spends a lot of time showing the camera her ass in what becomes a prelude to the anal action we are about to witness. After the same old shit with the vamp and the scamp, Mick shows up and the couple begins some very soulful and sensual kissing. When Mr. Blue makes a beeline for the beaver to do a little hairy taco tasting, Halley helps herself to her own nipples, sucking her tits with skill. When roles are reversed and the head is 'her to him', Halley does an amazing thing: she concentrates most of her mouth maneuvers on the head of Mick's prick. This topside attention really makes Mr. Blue ready to ball and the duo dive into a standard cowgirl routine. After sufficient friction has been experienced, it's time for the butt pirating. First, reverse cowgirl in the crack is engaged in, and then Mick turns Halley over and pile drives the dickens out of her rancid rose bud. When he is ready to eject, a nice semen sampling slithers down Hally's tongue and throat. With its near 'ass only' focus, this scene stands out as one of the better sequences in this set. Again, Vanderhyden's camera moves flawlessly around the action and allows a nice chemistry to build between Halley and Mick. The resulting scene is erotic, but then again, this is normcore we are talking about. It is not as sizzling as Scene 4. Score: 7/10
Don't get the wrong idea. When done right, normcore can be just as scintillating as the hardest XXX humpfest. Innocence: Baby Blue does not skimp on the sin and/or skin and there are more than enough detailed close-ups and positional pictorials to illustrate the lust. But the reason a title like this fails to completely enflame the libido is its desire to remain non-confrontational. Let's face it: double penetration is about as invasive an act as a gal can partake of, but in a normcore presentation, the duo dicking is polite, neat and commonplace. There is no "God-calling" histrionics or back scratching sizzle. Just like a standard action film with carefully constructed car chases that look exciting but don't really delight with risk and/or danger, the fucking and sucking in something like Innocence: Baby Blue is never as hot as it, itself, thinks it is. This is porn that doesn't want to offend, that wants to guide you from the faux frolics of pay cable carnality to the far more intense gonzo out there. Maybe a better name would be pussporn, the XXX equivalent of the chick flick. Founded to foster fantasy and hemming in the extremes as not to intimidate or disgust, this is as warm and fuzzy as smut can get. It looks great. It offers nothing but good looking lovers pounding the flesh in fiery formations. But the end result is more calming that corporeal. Innocence: Baby Blue is the kind of adult material you slide into the DVD player to impressive a first date. It is normcore at its most sincere.
If there is such a thing as reference quality porn video, the 1.33:1 full screen sensation that is this transfer surely lives up to that standard. The picture here is simply amazing, and considering the radical visual elements employed (hard primary colors, stark backdrops) the lack of flaring, bleeding, halos and other image-oriented atrocities is noteworthy. Vanderhyden's artistic attempts with camerawork and framing are fleshed out nicely and the overall Vogue like vision is crafted in complete crystal clarity. DVD transfers just don't get better than this one.
Utilizing some very original and evocative music, credited to Loren Alexander, the Dolby Digital Stereo suggests both a modern cosmopolitan flare mixed with urban trip-hop trances. Voices and noises are captured in excellent auditory dynamics and the mood of exploration and innovation is maintained throughout. Though the now-common practice of turning the tunes down once the action heats up is still practiced here – much to the Dirge's old school proclivities – the overall sonic package is near perfect and very impressive.
Along with the obligatory photo gallery, the sole bonus feature is a behind the scenes look at the making of this movie. The concentration is on Scene 3 – with Charlie and Penny acting up for the camera, Scene 4 – with Lily commenting on how sexually satisfied she was by her onscreen sex partner, and Scene 6 – with some of the anal dynamics discussed. In between, we are treated to make-up tips, various costuming decisions and some trained bird tricks (someone's pet performs a few hilarious pantomime routines). While not as in-depth as other looks at the workings within the adult industry, it is still fun to see the performers without their "game face" on.
All new nomenclature aside, Innocence: Baby Blue is above-average pornography crafted with care and consideration by the always-dependable Ninn Worx label. While it can't match Mr. Ninn's own visual spectacles, Halle Vanderhyden's interesting interpretation of adult material is artistically sound, if lacking in aggressive lovemaking. On the Disco Dirge Peter Meter, the title scores a 7.5 out of 10 and is highly recommended. Couples will cave over all the nice nookie going on here, so a Cohabitation Certification is all but a given. But if your monkey business mentality tends to swerve over to the gonzo, gaping and violating side of the XXX map, something like Innocence: Baby Blue is going to feel like hardcore with titillation training wheels. Calling it normcore, or pussporn is only half the story. What we have here is demographically designed adult material, hoping to hone in on the specific sex acts and situations that compliment their consumer base perfectly. There is nothing wrong with such super-specialization, but your average hardcore fan should not go in to this Ninn Worx wonder thinking they're going to see some ultra-steamy slam fest. This is safe sex pornography and in the vast universe of the fuck film, there is as much room for sensitivity as there is for gangbangs and bukakke. If you want to see how the other half screws, check out the tame temptations of Innocence: Baby Blue. It's very pretty in its pandering.