Lust in the Woods (1990)

March 10, 2014 by adamsunderground

lustwood8After being stranded on a remote country road by a car breakdown, a couple whose marriage is in peril wanders through an expansive forest, desperate for signs of hope. Fraiser, the workaholic husband and a bundle of nerves, cannot easily endure the chaos of nature all about them. To him each moment away from civilization increases the likelihood that they will meet an untimely death, lost to humanity forever. Whereas his wife, Hyapatia, works to see the best in their situation, often drawing comfort in treasured childhood memories from her American Indian upbringing. Another married couple of free spirits, whom this castaway and her husband soon encounter, boosts her optimism even though the strangers are hiking for reasons that bewilder and annoy straight-arrow Fraiser. And the newly met neo-hippies clumsily reveal a path to a salvation neither he nor Hyapatia expected.

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AU Score
Total Grade: A
Specialty Grade
Screenplay B
Acting A
Cinematography A
Film Editing B
Visual Effects B
Audio A
Sound Editing B
Audio Effects B
Musical Score A
Production Design A

lustwood14Lust in the Woods reliably presents a clear narrative, simple as it is, without significant technical mistakes in challenging conditions shooting almost entirely outdoors. It succeeds in its comedy thanks to abundant strong dialogue and acting, with a few visual gags sprinkled in for effect. Although her chaste acting is LW’s worst and not near the quality of her costars, Megan Leigh at times threatens to overshadow wonderful Hyapatia Lee in her sex scenes—especially their three-way, as the blonde reacts in pleasure with believable abandon. A testament to the actresses’ professionalism, the lesbian scene delightfully never descends into a cat-house cacophony, as each girl in turn focuses on eliciting a orgasm from the other rather than matching it simultaneously.

The film’s editing misses top marks from neglecting to suitably introduce the foreign tourists and from using cheap, error-ridden credits. Consuming about twenty minutes of the movie’s ninety minute running time, that foreign couple sequence needs an establishing shot, otherwise its entry creates unnecessary confusion about the setting’s time and location. Set too high in its sound levels in comparison to the other audio overall, the soundtrack’s unpredictable use of fast tempo songs during slow, methodical foreplay sessions before sex slightly diminishes the benefits gained by its otherwise welcome variety.

Again, those slip ups in LW do not significantly hinder its charm. It’s a fun movie that never loses it way through all its breath-taking scenery.

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