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Sweet Movie (The Criterion Collection) (1974)

Carole Laure , Pierre Clémenti , Dusan Makavejev  |  Unrated |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

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Sweet Movie (The Criterion Collection) + WR: Mysteries of the Organism (The Criterion Collection) + Eclipse Series 18: Dusan Makavejev- Free Radical
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Product Details

  • Actors: Carole Laure, Pierre Clémenti, Anna Prucnal, Sami Frey, Jane Mallett
  • Directors: Dusan Makavejev
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English, French, Polish, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: The Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: June 19, 2007
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,015 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sweet Movie (The Criterion Collection)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Dušan Makavejev
  • New video interviews with Makavejev and Balkan film scholar Dina Iordanova
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • A booklet featuring new essays by critic David Sterritt and Harvard professor and philosopher Stanley Cavell

Editorial Reviews

Pushing his themes of sexual liberation to their boiling point, Yugoslavian art-house provocateur Dusan Makavejev followed his international sensation WR: Mysteries of the Organism with this full-throated shriek in the face of bourgeois complacency and movie watching. Sweet Movie tackles the limits of personal and political freedom with kaleidoscopic feverishness, shuttling viewers from a gynecological beauty pageant to a grotesque food orgy with scatological, taboo-shattering glee. With its lewd abandon and sketch-comedy perversity, Sweet Movie became both a cult staple and an exemplar of the envelope pushing of 1970s cinema.

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
79 of 86 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Right On! Government Sucks! Oh Wait, Poo? June 19, 2007
Dusan Makavejev's 1974 film Sweet Movie is an indictment toward all forms of authority and convention. It does not obviously or even wittingly perhaps come from an honest political standard itself, but it instead exists to attack all that rules us. It skewers capitalism, communism, and absolutely everything in between. Perhaps it is a call specifically for some sort of Anarcho-Primitivism? Perhaps Sweet Movie is simply a celebration of life in its own sick and twisted way?

Sweet Movie follows two different stories and both feature a female protagonist. The first follows a contestant of the 1984 Miss Monde pageant. She wins and her prize is her marriage to some big corporate dude. She is shocked by how he degrades her in their first meeting and she runs away. Her rejection is met with displeasure by his cronies and she ends up getting pretty severely humiliated and then stuffed into a suitcase and shipped off to France. After that she gets stuck to some Latin guy and enters a commune and some pretty wacky things happen. This story operates as a criticism toward capitalism and consumerism at the beginning and the conclusion, while it seems to attack communism in the middle. The second story follows a young woman who is leading a boat down a river. The boat is full of candy and has a statue of Karl Marx on it. She seduces all who encounter her with sex, candy and propaganda. Then she kills them. Obviously it is a direct attack on communism.

There are some pretty shocking things in Sweet Movie but that shouldn't be a surprise when taking into account the time period and some of the subversive and surreal counterculture names involved in the film (e.g. Otto Muehl, Roland Topor and George Melly).
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
While typing this I still can't believe what I just watched and thankfully enough I had a couple of wine glass's to relax my senses. This movie is like all over the place but its essentially two inter-cut stories, but I can explain better by separating them two. Weirdly enough I'll start with the second story with a woman (Anna Prucnal) who helms a boat through the canals of Amsterdam with a bust of Marx on the bow. A sailor on a bicycle from the battleship Potemkin pursues her, as he wants to be her next lover. She is "revolution" and warns him that her lovers always die. While that is playing out, controversy occurs when she seduces several young children. Makevejev intercuts German footage of the uncovering of Polish victims of the Russian massacre at Katyn Forest. He contrasts Prucnal's victims with the dead Polish army.

In the primary plot line, a world beauty contest is held to find the most beautiful virgin in the world, who will become the bride of a rich Texas oilman (Dean Wormer!) who is obsessed with cleanliness. Miss Canada (Carole Laure) is the winner. The couple gets married and helicopters to his home. He undresses, scrubs her with alcohol, and then shows her his golden swhwartz, whereupon she starts screaming uncontrollably. Eventually, his overbearing mother sends her packing (literally packed into a suitcase) where she has adventures with a macho Mexican singer at the Eiffel Tower, but becomes increasingly withdrawn and mute, and ends up in the Otto Muehl Troupe commune. It is this section which earned the film's notoriety, as the troupe believes in a kind of therapy where we all get in touch with our base selves, and have monthly events where they target a member, and engage in overeating, public defecation and urination, debasement, etc.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Bitter Sweet June 30, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
There are movies that are devised from formulas developed to serve (and be served by) the Demographic ..... and then there are those rare films that create their own audience. Unfortunately, when Makavejev first unleashed his Sweet Movie in 1974, most interested parties of influence saw fit to have it banned, and the filmmaker himself was exiled (along with some cast members) from his native Yugoslavia for nearly 15 years.

Multi-mega kudos to Criterion for rescuing this now very alive and relevant explosion of a movie from near-obscurity. Beautifully restored, looking and sounding better than I remembered it, and including in this edition interviews and more in-depth facts about the making and history of this one-of-a-kind movie, watching it again restored in this viewer an appreciation of artists who put themselves way out on a line to give life to a vision, one that can become more relevant over time, despite overall condemnation at its initial release. As stated in the accompanying literature, there are countries where the movie is banned for any sort of distribution, to this day.

The dual story line, about two Women of Earth (Miss Monde 1984 and Captain Anna Planeta), is interwoven in a montage-like format that lashes out at Capitalism and Communism, spits in the eye of all manner of creative or sensual oppression, and does so in a take-no-prisoners satirical fantasy sense that helps lighten up the otherwise dark and intense subject matter. As Makavejev explains in an interview, had he tried to do any of it seriously, it would have hampered his film's acceptance all the more so, for it was fully his intent to make contact with his audience in an entertaining, circus-style (although somewhat abstract) manner.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet Movie (The Criterion Collection)
You HAVE to have an VERY, VERY open mind to watch this. The oddness of this movie made me buy it almost the minute the end credits rolled. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Jan Fogel
1.0 out of 5 stars 98 minutes of WTF
One of the worst movies I have ever seen. Shocking moments of disgust don't make for a film worth seeing unless you just enjoy being grossed out by watching people drink piss and... Read more
Published 8 months ago by C. Boblit
Published 22 months ago by HAN XIAO
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet Movie
Sweet movie was good,great maybe.The movie was never dull and the further it went along the more interesting it became, right to the last scene where the Natalie Wood look alike... Read more
Published on February 28, 2011 by jhawk
4.0 out of 5 stars umm......
wow were to start on this nasty Lil flick, this film is surely not for everyone, Like seriously not for everyone. Read more
Published on September 25, 2010 by M. Mont
4.0 out of 5 stars WHAT? in the HELL? is THIS?
Sweet Movie (Dusan Makavejev, 1974)

If you've seen WR: Mysteries of the Organism (and if you haven't, you should), you've got an idea of what you're going to get from a... Read more
Published on April 15, 2010 by Robert Beveridge
5.0 out of 5 stars Cult Movie Waiting To Find it's Cult
Dusan Makavejev's SWEET MOVIE is a masterpiece of outrageous cinema that falls somewhere between the disturbing surrealism of Buñuel and Dali's UN CHIEN ANDALOU, the... Read more
Published on July 13, 2009 by Wilhelm Louis Murg Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars from scatology to eschatology
I have to begin by admitting this is not an easy film to watch. To the regular viewer, the scatological overtones are gratuitous, to say the least. Read more
Published on May 15, 2009 by fCh
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbingly erotic and erotically disturbing...
Sweet Movie is like the crack baby of Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom - Criterion Collection and Pink Flamingos. Read more
Published on May 6, 2009 by T. Youmans
3.0 out of 5 stars Excess
When I saw "Montenegro" all those years ago, it never really occurred to me that such a fantastic, idiosyncratic, and mysterious movie would actually come from a director that made... Read more
Published on August 22, 2008 by PolarisDiB
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