Wednesday, 28 October 2015
All Ladies Do It (3½ Stars)
"All men are really stupid pigs. They preach equality of the sexes, but none of them practise it. They're worms, all of them".
When you see a film with a title like this your first question must be, "All ladies do what?". If you've seen other films directed by Tinto Brass you can probably guess the answer. I shan't keep you in suspense any more. The answer is, all ladies cheat on their husbands.
The film is an adaptation of Mozart's opera, "Cosi fan tutte", which means "They all do it". The main difference between the opera and the film is that the opera merely deals with women being unfaithful, whereas the film also incorporates the theme of prostitution.
Diana and Paolo are a young married couple who live in Rome. Diana is very much in love with her husband, but she likes to flirt with other men, for instance by accidentally touching men standing next to her on crowded trams. She works in an elegant clothing store. She talks to one of their best customers, and she's shocked when she hears about all the expensive gifts she receives from rich men in exchange for sex. Diana talks to her colleague, who replies, "That's nothing special. I sleep with our boss to get a pay rise". So Diana turns to her sister Nadia, who says that if she loves her husband she should sleep with men for money, because her husband will profit from it.
Diana has to travel to Venice when her Aunt Emma dies. The Will is read, and she inherits a luxurious penthouse apartment overlooking the city. While in Venice Diana finds out that her aunt used to be a prostitute and became very wealthy from her work. This was for a good cause, because when she died she left all her money to a convent. Diana meets a man that she first met in Rome and is unfaithful to her husband for the first time, but she feels very guilty about it afterwards. Unable to cope, she spirals into excesses of alcohol and drugs.
Tinto Brass has an agenda. All his films carry the message that women can't be faithful, and the only way for a husband to make his wife happy is to allow her the freedom to be with other men. Is that what women want? Maybe some women, but is it what all women want? I'll let my readers decide.