JOE D’AMATO WEEK: Sesso Nero (1980)

Black Sex is also known as Sexy Erotic Love and Exotic Malice. That last title is probably best, because this is the scuzzier side of D’Amato, backed up with a script by George Eastman.

One of the first — if not the first — adult films to be shown in mainstream Italian theaters, this movie was made on the same 1979 Dominican Republic vacation that gave us Erotic Nights of the Living Dead, Porno Holocaust and Hard Sensation. In all, D’Amato made nine movies in this region in just one year.

The thing is, this movie may have adult sex in it, but it’s also the kind of movie that is just as ready to turn you off as it is to work you up.

Mark Lester — not the director but a businessman — has been diagnosed with an enlarged prostate requiring surgery in two weeks. Facing death — along with a syringe of painkillers — Mark decides to head to Santo Domingo, the place where he first met Maira (Annj Goren). She didn’t follow him because she felt that she was too poor, so she stayed behind on the islands, along with her voodoo-practicing family.

As the film unspools, Mark alternates between the genital discomfort and dreams of the woman he loved returning to life. It turns out that with her last breath, Maira cursed Mark’s name and now, her spirit — and those words — live in a bottle held by her father who claims that Mark will never leave the island alive.

Mark’s wife Liza — who claims that she owns him — arrives and fights with him about her sterility and the fact that his upcoming surgery will cost him the ability to ever become aroused again. Yes, this is certainly not a movie for the raincoaters. Of course — I mean, no of course because this is a film made of madness — Maira is really her younger sister who was raised to look and behave exactly like her because her father knew Mark would return and that he had to be ready to take everything from him.

So, after a movie of Maira cucking our protagonist, who is in turn cucked by his wife who hates him, and suffering agonizing pain throughout, decides to kneel down and slice off his manhood while he dies in the surf, held by the ghost of a woman who died because he left her so many years ago.

A feel good movie not to be watched with one hand!

That’s the funny thing. There’s a good story and potentially good movie here, but most audiences will never see this because, well, it’s a 1980 adult film from a director whose least sexual film still has a man have an oedipal relationship with his housekeeper and sleep with the corpse of his last wife. So yeah — this probably won’t connect with many.

I mean, who wants to watch a movie where the main character keeps shooting up drugs and getting drunk and lies in a hotel room in abject pain knowing he has to come home to get his penis removed so he just cuts it off himself and dies on his own terms, except that he’s a horrible person who caused the death of a girl who didn’t deserve it so her father ruined his other daughter’s life to transform her into a murder weapon?

I guess me.

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