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Cinema Obscura

Studio: Vivid » Review by Staff Review » Review Date: 8/20/04

XCritic's Advice: Watch On Demand

Genre: Straight

Director: David Stanley

Cast: Malezia, Lola, Holly Hollywood, Eric Masterson, Evan Stone, Peter Shaft, Rick Patrick, Jean Val Jean

Length: 1:21

Production Date: 04/06/04

Extras: Five bonus scenes (featuring Bella Starr, Elizabeth Lawrence, Karina, Holly Hollywood, Lily Thai, Sophie Evans and Layla Jade), trailers, alternate angles, star and film galleries, annoying phone sex ads

Audio/Video: The sound level is pretty low, but consistent throughout. Turning the volume up to hear dialogue won't blow out a speaker when the first moan comes in the sex scene. Video quality is pretty poor for a recent release; it almost looks like one-chip digital video, the way the colors are incredibly muted and murky.

Body of Review: (First things first...points off for unskippable ads at the front of the disc. Just poor form.)

With a name like Cinema Obscura, it's obvious that this isn't going to be a film for the hardcore pervert. Vivid's latest offering features one of its newest contract girls, Malezia, and a lot of talking. No, really - a lot of talking.

The "plot": Leo (Masterson) is a famous porn director (ah, meta-porn) looking for inspiration. He thinks he's found his muse in a reporter (billed as "Journalist" in the closing credits, but given the name Debra in promotional materials). She has left her husband, Leo is told, and wants to interview him for her porn rag. She meets him on set, where he's filming his newest opus...

Scene 1: Malezia, Rick Patrick
Acts Included: Oral (blowjob), vaginal.
Positions: Reverse cowgirl, missionary
Condoms: Yes.
Both Malezia and Patrick start the scene in full-body leotards and give performance-art style pretentious dialogue before she rips open his leotard in the crotchal area. As Chris Rock might say, she sucks him "like the antidote was in there." Something about the duo remaining as clothed as they do (with appropriate patches torn off only when needed) is a weird, but sexy change of pace. But the art-school weirdness doesn't really fade away, and the sex never really gets hot because of it.

-- sponsored by --

Scene 2: Eric Masterson, Holly Hollywood
Acts Included: Oral (Blowjob), vaginal.
Positions: Standing doggie, missionary
Condoms: Yes.
By this point, Leo has gotten the reporter back to his house (though we never really see how), and she gives a "glowing review" on her knees. Hollywood gives a long, sloppy hummer before moving on, and really seems to be having a good time. Masterson seems to enjoy it more, of course.

The couple move on to standing and missionary positions before she goes back on her knees to finish it off - all in just seven minutes. Way too rushed for what was a very hot pairing.

Scene 3: Malezia, Jean Val Jean
Acts Included: Oral (both), vaginal.
Positions: Missionary, doggie
Condoms: Yes.
Leo is trying to direct Malezia and Jean, but they're having a hard time focusing on anything but each other. So, Leo ditches zombie-shooting, walks off the set with Hollywood and leaves Jean and Malezia to their own devices.

It's another under-10 minute quickie, this time with Ben finishing on Malezia's...toes. Hey, whatever works. Was everyone in a rush today? Did director David Stanley have four more films to shoot before lunch? It certainly looks like it.

Scene 4: Lola, Peter Shaft
Acts Included: Oral (both), vaginal.
Positions: Reverse cowgirl, missionary
Condoms: Yes.
Debra and Leo have a heart-to-heart over...some sort of pastry. Leo admits he's lost his passion for porn because of a porn starlet he loved (cue Wayback Machine) ... Theresa, who when not negotiating rates from triple anal scenes on her cell phone, finds time to shoot a scene with Shaft. For the record, he's won August's "Most Cliche Porn Name of the Month." Every time the action starts to heat up, though, we get a cut shot to Leo, watching on a monitor in the other room, emoting. It pads out an already lukewarm scene.

Scene 5: Malezia, Evan Stone
Acts Included: Oral (both), vaginal.
Positions: 69, spoon, reverse cowgirl
Condoms: Yes.
(Returning to present time) So, that 's why Leo doesn't care anymore about anything other than the sex. Besides, all that matters is the sex, because "everybody fast forwards through this [the dialogue] anyway." Har. But Debra has some inspirational words for him, followed by an implied inspirational act while he writes his masterpiece.

The parade of not-sex continues, with Leo showing up for the next day's shoot with new script in hand, ready to toss everything else away.

Finally we get back to Malezia (which is always a good place to get back to), as she and Evan Stone shoot the new scene - black and white, with French subtitles. Nice touch. Color comes back just in time for Evan to get artistic between her thighs.

This is easily the hottest scene on the disc, even if it only lasts 11 minutes and Evan's French accent is ridiculous. They're both into it and there are no distracting cutaways or anything else. It's almost like - shock - the sex is the focal point of the scene!

Concluding Words: I'll leave out the BIG DOUBLE TWIST ENDING, but suffice to say Cinema Obscura is a plot-driven porn film written by someone who can't keep a plotline, even a simple one, straight. I have no objection to porn with plot, but only when the story doesn't get in the way of the sex. Most of the latter seemed rushed throughout the film (a true crime when both Malezia and Hollywood, two incredibly sexy women, are on the set) in order to accommodate the former.

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