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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Review: The Erotic Couch (2009)

A woman comes into frame and informs us that the film we are about to see contains scenes of a highly sexual nature.   Quick edits show her clenching sheets, while another reveals a woman feverishly straddling a cushion.  "But wipe that drool off your little faces, this isn't a movie about sex, this is a movie about love" she proclaims.  Perspectives change again as she continues the brief monologue; first lying on her stomach absent mindedly thrusting a remote between some sofa cushions before addressing an overhead camera threatening to invade her ample cleavage. "So get your hands out of your pants motherfuckers, I give you the story of The Erotic Couch".  She spills quarters onto herself produced from within her panties and gives us a wicked smile.

The entire sequence carries an unmistakable Russ Meyer-like air in delivery and it's not the last time we see the approach.  Then queue the retro-intro, complete with super groovy make-out music and a girl dancing in silhouette à la Bond movies.  So what in the hell does Gonzoriffic Films and Andrew Shearer have in store for us here, exactly?  I'm not too sure, but I'm damn well pulling up a seat.

Open to Beatrice (co-writer/producer Monica Puller), who has posted an ad to get rid of her old creaky sofa bed that's been giving her back problems to the point she'd rather sleep on the floor.  Strangely enough a package arrives on the doorstep containing a red velvet couch cover just before her first interested party arrives.  Beatrice carefully smoothes the material out over the worn upholstery then sits down in front of it to partake in some tuna, accidentally dropping some onto the sofa.  After a very metaphorical moment she's startled to hear the furniture ask her to remove the can from its place on it; then it instructs her to put the cushion back where it goes, too.  "Slowly, don't do it too fast", the couch suggestively insists.  After a sigh of relief offering, "I could do things to you that you'd like, too. Why don't you have a seat and let's find out."  Beatrice accepts the couch's invitation and is soon on a journey of personal discovery that unspools her own proverbial threads of love, passion and desire.

A series of encounters quickly follow that involve Beatrice and her comely couch and its fetching fibers.  Guests arrive and inhibitions are lost, cushions are caressed, ice cubes get sucked, lady businesses tingle and lesbians loiter.  Can Beatrice quench the insatiable appetite of her sultry sofa before it consumes everyone in its fervid folds?

If one comparison must be made, then I'd say The Erotic Couch is sitting most in John Waters' territory.  It is subversive and outrageous, yet has a refreshing honesty in detail that is extremely rare in mainstream filmmaking.  Director Andrew Shearer shows a real talent in photography and composition (especially during the final coupling) and the score is also very commendable.

Something also must be said for the actresses that Shearer employs.  He admirably chooses atypical female subjects for his films; seemingly as much to prove a point as to give them a unique aesthetic.  And despite the campiness of the story, these women give very brave and earnest performances.  Seeing them 'in heat' should arouse any warm-blooded creature, although you'll be hard pressed to even find an exposed nipple.  The Erotic Couch may not be a sex film, but it is as undeniably sensual as it is undeniably ludicrous.

In the end I think the film really is just about love.  It just also happens to involve some personal relations with furniture.  Because after all, women apparently know a sex couch when they see one.

Sofa-king gay you have to see it for your own eyes; and I say that most affectionately.

Thanks to Maven over at Last Blog On The Left for being kind enough to procure me a copy of this little gem and you should definitely check out the Gonzoriffic Film site at gonzoriffic.com, too.


  1. Bill! Thank you for "getting it", and I appreciate the kind words!

  2. The pleasure was truly all mine! Now I just want to see the rest of your films. Consider me now an official gOnZo gRoUpEE. :)