7/11/11

Flavia The Heretic (1974) Review

She Launched a River of BLOOD

Flavia The Heretic
One probably wouldn't guess from the depravity of Beasts in Human Skin, but my background is in comparative religion so nunsploitation films are among my favorite of the grindhouse sub-genres.

Today we have another bloody booby-flick starring my favorite movie nun, Florinda Bolkan.  However, Flavia The Heretic isn't just another silly way to showcase gratuitous nudity and violence, although the film does contain ample amounts of both, it's a well acted and almost plausible account of a woman's rebellion against oppression and abuse within the cloistered life of the 15th century Catholic Church.  Like many exploitation films, it's a bit of feminism shrouded by blood and boobies.

Flavia (Florinda Bolkan) is forced into a convent by her nobleman father to prevent her from succumbing to the temptation of sin.  While there she witnesses horrendous abuses against her fellow nuns for even the most trivial of transgressions.  She also questions the male dominated hierarchy of the Church and why all three persons of the Holy Trinity are male.  Women seem to have no place in Catholic society except to be used and abused by the ruling males.  They are meant to be either sexless nuns or placid, demure breeders.

"Alright you little freshman bitches, AIR RAID!"
She manages to escape from the nunnery and flees with the assistance of a Jewish friend but before a romance can develop, they are captured.  She is flogged and returned to the convent and he is chained in the dungeon.

The Muslims invade Italy and their intrusion into Christian dominated Europe is welcomed by Flavia, and she becomes the lover of the leader of this invading army.  The Muslims rape and kill and do what invading armies do and Flavia stands by and watches it all, even as they push her father down a well to his death.  She rises in power and influence and when she is almost the equal of her Muslim lover, he abandons her.  The invading army leaves Italy and Flavia is left to face the wrath of the Christian people.

Flavia The Heretic is not perfect.  It can be slow at times and the battle scenes between the Christians and Muslims look amateurish by today's standards.  It does however feature plenty of gorrific torture scenes that make up for the crappy fights.  A nun gets hot tar poured on her breasts and belly and then her nipples cut off, a monk gets an unexpected backdoor delivery from a sharpened wooden stake, etc.  Also, for some reason a woman crawls into the hanging carcass of a cow.  Early in the film, a horse is castrated on screen as well.  I guess these may not be selling points to some, but this is an exploitation film after all.



Violence Rating/Index: 4 out of 5
Booby Rating/Index: 3.5 or 4ish out of 5  - Click to see the nude scenes.



23 comments:

D4 said...

You know, those really are some damn fine selling points. But it would sell so much easier if they were accompanied with a better overall movie. I mean we're talking over an hour here. My tiny attention span needs more to work with is all.

Triper said...

Weird movie, i wanna watch it :)

Magixx said...

I guess this one will be worth watching it, gonna check that out later :)

movie68 said...

I actually saw this one, not bad.

Scrubby Bear said...

sounds like an interesting movie. Sexless nuns you said..... I am hooked.

http://yearningandlearning.blogspot.com/

Bart said...

i'd tap it

Henry said...

Are they really "sexless" tho? ;)

Mikemage said...

Oh man I got something good to watch now! +Followed for life, http://cryptozen.blogspot.com

I Have an Opinion said...

A Grindhouse blog, not bad! There's certainly a bit of an appeal there. This movie looks like it might be worth a look, you give some pretty concise reviews.

Electric Addict said...

seems like a good plot, decent booby rating :)

Bonjour Tristesse said...

This is another unwatched one in my collection.

The Angry Lurker said...

Nudity, violence, nuns and a story. Damn.

-E- said...

that actually sounds like a pretty involved plot for a nunsploitation movie.

Rlx said...

looks pretty good,i'll watch it tommorow..

Zombie said...

boobs!! lol.

Jay said...

horse castration? why?!

braumaman said...

This seems rather creepy. I'll definitely check it out.

The Onion Gypsy said...

never heard of it but will check it out

Michael Arsenault said...

Man, where do you find these movies? I've never heard of most of these and they seem creepy in that old school kind of way.

GMSoccerPicks said...

4.0 boobs + 4.0 gore? count me in! if i could only find those movies...

hoaks2 said...

Well, I was actually down with you until the selling points. From what you described they seem... pointless. I think I will give it a watch and decide for myself.

T. Roger Thomas said...

Bob Barker's influence has gone to far.

Laughing Vault said...

haha sick movie

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