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Psychopathia Sexualis


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Product Details

  • Actors: Kristi Casey, David Weber, Zoe Cooper, Patrick Parker, David Sanders
  • Directors: Bret Wood
  • Writers: Bret Wood
  • Producers: Patrick Parker, Bret Wood, Tracy Martin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Director's Cut, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Kino Lorber films
  • DVD Release Date: January 9, 2007
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000IONJLU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #517,575 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Psychopathia Sexualis" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 30 minutes of deleted scenes
  • Cast and crew interviews with behind-the-scenes footage
  • Judgement and Rapture, two short films by Bret Wood
  • Historical data on Krafft-Ebing
  • Screenplay excerpts
  • Photo gallery
  • Trailers

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Described as "kinky material trapped in a cage of Victorian propriety" (The New York Times), Psychopathia Sexualis is a dreamlike depiction of turn-of-the-century sexual deviance, from the pages of Richard von Krafft-Ebing's notorious medical text. As he interweaves fables of sexual repression, vampirism, hypnosis, sado-masochism and lesbianism, writer/director Bret Wood (Hell's Highway: The True Story of Highway Safety Films) creates a haunted vision of an era when medical science endeavored to label, cure or eliminate anyone who refused to conform to its idea of sexual "normalcy."

Amazon.com

Psychopathia Sexualis, Bret Wood's visual adaptation of Richard von Krafft-Ebing's eponymous book, investigates sexual perversity in an attempt to better render Krafft-Ebbing's medical definitions for conditions like necrophilia, vampirism, masochism, and homosexuality. Fictional vignettes enliven chapters in the book, and an omniscient narrator commands attention between live-action scenes. One would expect the explicit nature of this material to be sexy or campy, but it's really not. The scene of a man cowering under his dominatrix's heeled boot is dulled by slow pace. A man getting hypnotized with metronome by Sigmund Freud's teacher (Ebbing) practically hypnotizes the viewer with its severe mood. To its benefit, Psychopathia Sexualis looks like a Goth Guy Maddin film, with its colorful Victorian sets. A couple quick scenes, like a woman's corset being laced up, or the nurse who gets off on her patient's blood-sucking, are inviting in a sensationalistic way. But in general, the film's sections such as "Manifestations," "Methods of Treatment," and "Melancholia" are too belabored to intriguingly reflect the text's case studies. "Methods of Treatment" portrays the dire Victorian asylum, but not in any new light. Psychopathia Sexualis is an anticlimactic take on infinitely fascinating fetishes and obsessions. Though the film is tedious, it still reveals insights about sexuality and its narrow definitions a century ago. --Trinie Dalton

Customer Reviews

2.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By TammyJo Eckhart VINE VOICE on March 12, 2007
Format: DVD
The movie is an attempt to talk about Krafft-Ebing work to understand and classify human sexuality confined as he was by Victorian morality and science. The problem is that it attempts to focus on at least five different cases, sometimes skipping between one and another. The result is that I could not feel much of anything for any of the stories except that of the young woman and her governess who are lesbians. I was amused by the ending which demonstrates that even the "best therapy" may not be a cure for what society considers sexual problems. Regardless of the warnings the movies feels the need to have, it is not very sexual explicit nor did I find it particularly arousing. I also didn't think "Victorians are weird" but instead "Victorians were sad" but I knew that before from working with the ideas and erotica from that period.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Clair Lavaye on January 16, 2007
Format: DVD
If you enjoy reading the text-book aloud for hours on end, you'll love Bret Wood's depiction of Kraft-Ebing's compendium of repressed eroticism. Sexual perversity, properly mingled with sadness, loneliness, and shame. Soundtrack by Paul Mercer heightens the funerial tone. Pitch-perfect Victorian costumes and settings. Such interesting faces and figures...the casting was excellent. This DVD belongs in the collection of anyone who is serious about such matters. However, I recommend the Brian King edition of the Psychopathia, if you are considering the book for purchase. My only regret is that there was no place in the film for side-stories in the book not specific to sex, such as the maiden aunt who would shriek "bewitched" when visitors laid umbrellas, gloves, or purses onto a certain side table in the parlor, snatching up the bewitched item and secreting it in a location in the house not discovered until after her death. These little touches are missed...but one cannot have everything in life that one might desire.
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Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
Because of the way it is made it is pretty accurate. Also I would recommend it to my friends here to watch it once.
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By Anthony H. Miles on December 7, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
not good enough to complete
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sally Shornick on February 8, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This movie if nothing elese is beautifully made. The cinematography is superb. There isn't much dialoge and not much of a plot per se but the vignettes taken from the book are artfully and masterfully created. Visually stunning.
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