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(aka "Nerosubianco" or "The Artful Penetration of Barbara" or "Attraction" or "Black on White" or "Barbara, the Yes Girl" )

 

directed by Tinto Brass
Italy 1969

 

A quiet day in the park leads to delirious, rock-scored encounters with the counter-culture by married Barbara (Anita Sanders) which take the form of a black man (Terry Carter). More random and less apocalyptic than Brass' subsequent THE HOWL (L'URLO), the vignettes of ATTRACTION (NEROSUBIANCO) are structured around twelve songs by Freedom, a British rock band featuring members of Procol "A Whiter Shade of Pale" Harum (although there are fourteen songs on the soundtrack and an oft-reported running time of 89 minutes for the film). A hair salon's female customers are replaced by cows, the black man throws away a communist's "red book" and gives him Malcolm X's autobiography instead, stock footage of war, protests, concerts, and even the eye-slitting from Bunuel's UN CHIEN ANDALOU are just some of what you'll see underscored by Freedom's variable output. As in L'URLO, the heroine's straight-laced husband is played by Nino Segurini but Terry Carter is given less to do than Luigi Proietti's counterpart in that film. Brass seems to have been referencing the opening scene of this film in the opening titles of his later TRA(SGRE)DIRE including the line "Who is in charge?"

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: 26 February 1969 (Italy)

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DVD Review: Cult Epics - Region 0 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Distribution

Cult Epics

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:20:00
Video

1.77:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.99 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono)
Subtitles none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Cult Epics

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.77:1

Edition Details:
• THE ARTFUL PENETRATION OF BARBARA trailer (1:33)
• DEADLY SWEET trailer (3:24)
• Lobby Card Gallery

DVD Release Date: September 29, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 12

 

Comments

Cult Epic's disc of NEROSUBIANCO is part of their Tinto Brass collection but also the first of their "Radley Metzger presents" line. The film begins with the Audubon Films release title THE ARTFUL PENETRATION OF BARBARA but it also includes the export title ATTRACTION as part of the title sequence proper (scrolling horizontally across the bottom of the frame like the original Italian sequence). I am not sure if the Audubon sequence was tacked onto the front of the ATTRACTION print or if it was always like this.

Unlike other Tinto Brass titles, ATTRACTION has been transferred from a 16mm print belonging to Radley Metzger's Audubon Films. Since the transfer is derived from an American print, the image is not a PAL-NTSC transfer and is also progressive (not a hard-telecined video master). The 1.77:1 cropping looks a bit severe vertically (though the framing is also aggressively off-kilter) and I think a 1.66:1 aspect ratio might have been more appropriate (the Italian TV broadcast is letterboxed at 1.70:1 and is more colorful but about 4 minutes shorter with some alternate sequences and psychedelic opticals censoring some of the nudity) but I do not know whether Cult Epics or Metzger were responsible for the transfer. The end credits are cropped on both sides but not to the extent one would think given their stylization). The scene selection menu is actually a song selection menu dividing the film by the twelve songs written for the film by Freedom. Unlike other Cult Epics Tinto Brass titles, Brass does not provide a commentary or interview and the only extras are a lobby card gallery (for the Columbia Pictures ATTRACTION release) and trailers for THE ARTFUL PENETRATION OF BARBARA and DEADLY SWEET (COL CUORE IN GOLA). Reportedly, Brass' own English and Italian 35mm elements for NEROSUBIANCO are too damaged to run through projectors and it would be a shame if the original negatives for this film (whether it is indeed 80 minutes here or supposedly 89 minutes uncut) and Brass' other early films are not recovered before they become completely unusable.

 - Eric Cotenas

 


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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Cult Epics

Region 0 - NTSC

 




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