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Released: Sep 30th, 2009
Running Time: 210 Min.
Director: David Aaron Clark
Company: Evil Angel (EA) Productions
DVD Extras: Behind the Scenes, Interviews, Still Gallery(ies)
Cast: Jake Malone, Valentino (I), Mr. Marcus, Lana Violet, Jessica Bangkok, Asa Akira, Keni Styles, Destiny (VIII) (Asian)
Critical Rating: AAAAA
Asa Akira is Sada, an ex-hooker who takes a job at an L.A. fetish dungeon that services rich and powerful clients. A secret after-hours orgy leads Sada into an affair with the head-mistress' husband and partner Kichi. The pair immerse themselves in their own sensual world, exploring kinks and fetishes that turn complex and dangerous—Sada develops a fondness for sharp objects, as well as choking Kichi during sex. Can the profound bond between the beleaguered lovers survive, or will their kinky fairy-tale romance climax on the darkest note possible? Four-time AVN Award winner David Aaron Clark creates a visually captivating hardcore romance based on the real-life Japanese sex scandal that inspired the 1976 classic In the Realm of the Senses.
Tackling Nagisa Oshima’s 1976 stunner In the Realm of the Senses seems a natural progression in director David Aaron Clark’s career, as he made his name directing intense dramas featuring almost exclusively Asian women, most notably in the Asia Noir series. Interestingly, this three-hour hardcore saga is less obtuse than the original, and therefore, stunningly, more enjoyable. Pure is a steamy, dark and realistic portrait of sexual obsession gone awry.
The based-on-facts story of an ex-hooker (played to perfection by the stunning Asa Akira) who joins an underground bondage cellar only to fall into a fervid and ominous relationship with the husband of the club’s owner (Keni Styles) lends itself to an explicit interpretation. But here explicit goes for both the sex and the violence.
It’s not for the squeamish, as the sex tends to go to the extreme, as in a nasty and quite outrageous scene where leather-clad Jake Malone dominates a roped and tied Akira, smothers her face with his ass and pounds her pussy in an earnest fashion. More erotic but equally unique is a three-way lesbian/bondage sequence with Jessica Bangkok, Destiny and Lana Violet that tends to shock as well as arouse.
But the sex scenes between Akira and Styles, intercut throughout the production, are beautifully shot, erotic, sweaty and rather sweet ... for a while. Then they get darker, and from the time Akira first puts a knife next to Styles’ cock while jerking him off, the viewer feels that something catastrophic is impending.
All of the acting is first-rate, with Akira and the previously little-known, Thai-born Brit Styles giving lead performances sure to land them acting nominations in the 2010 AVN awards. Notable also are tight, precise performances by Jake Malone, Jessica Bangkok and Mr. Marcus, who help make the spectacular screenplay come to life.
Everything about this production screams first-rate, from the dazzling musical score to easy-on-the-eyes videography. Even the extras are first-rate, as interviews with Clark, Akira and Styles are quite revealing, and the behind the scenes section actually includes some bonus sex that supposedly erupted on the set.
David Aaron Clark has created his own masterpiece here, as Pure becomes this year’s thinking man’s porn feature. It won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but for the collector or connoisseur of a slowly dying art—the adult epic—this two-disc opus is a must-see title.