Past Times (2011)

May 1, 2013 by adamsunderground

Stop

STOPPED!

Approximately 20 minutes in, the entirety of the first sexual encounter, the screening was abandoned. This production is not a movie but a stylized stag film of individual sexual performances by anonymous people dressed in 1940s costumes on studio sets with period-like furniture.

Reminiscent of the Playboy Channel’s Electric Blue program of the ’80s and ’90s, Past Times offers no story or dialogue–just detached visual situations as backdrops for sex acts without substantial context. The meaningless, but tactile, blurb on the back of Past Times’ box cover previews an expression as significant as a fart in visual form:

“All around they could hear the sirens of war calling for more victims whilst their radios played the music of love. Listening to her voice that haunting sexual voice, holding one another kept hope alive and their passion burning.”

The lighting, editing, and audio of this work’s first scene appear inspired by a recent trend in horror movies. Much of the disturbing style and techniques present in the Saw movie trailer are reproduced. Past Times schizophrenically changes from period-like music to ominous low noise to sparse piano key tinkling and back again. Spurts of black and white clips are spliced in with spot lighting glaring off body parts and washing out features. Poor choices for camera angles leave much of the female performer’s body a mystery during several positions, which is compounded by too many bizarre edits to views just as unrevealing.

Tone-wise, the film’s an utter mess. At any minute it feels like some random actor will go insane, lopping off boobs and scrotum with a bayonet while declaring allegiance to the Third Reich.

Since the review was aborted due to the project’s baffling artistic decision to meld a television program of filler material with a mimicry of a horror movie genre designed around discomforting its audience, here are some pictures of Past Times’ cast for compensation:

Stock photo of Chloe Conrad. Image by boo00769, via Photobucket

Stock photo of Karlie Simon. Image by Aaron Jacob, via Flickr

Stock photo of Natalia Forrest. Image by ShinySexy, via Flickr

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