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"8 1/2 Women"
(2000) (John Standing, Matthew Delamere) (R)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Mild Mild Heavy Minor Mild
Minor None None None Heavy
Smoking Tense Family
Topics To
Talk About
Extreme None Moderate Moderate Mild

Drama: Having embarked on realizing their erotic fantasies by creating their own private bordello filled with an eclectic variety of women, a middle-aged widower and his adult son soon discover which of the sexes has the upper hand over the other.
Philip Emmenthal (JOHN STANDING) is a successful fifty-five-year old Swiss banker whose wife of thirty some years has just died. His son, Storey (MATTHEW DELAMERE), arrives to cheer up dad which includes some father-son bonding through nudity, an apparent incestuous encounter, and a visit to the local theater where they catch a showing of Fellini's classic film, "8 ."

That film, coupled with meeting Simato (SHIZUKA INOH), a Japanese woman so addicted to the Pachinko games found in a Kyoto casino -- that Philip has recently acquired -- that she'll trade sex for credit, gets the two men thinking. If Fellini could have a varied assortment of women, why can't they?

Thus, starting with Simato, the two quickly assemble their own private bordello at the family's Geneva estate. Among the women are Beryl (AMANDA PLUMMER), a woman with a thing for her pig and horse, the latter of which she rides bareback while nude; Giaconda (NATACHA AMAL), a perpetually pregnant woman who offers to become that way again for the men for a tidy sum of cash; and Palmira (POLLY WALKER), a woman who's only interested in Philip and not his son.

Then there's Kito (VIVIAN WU), Philips' translator and business associate; Clothilde (BARBARA SARAFIAN), the maid who's upset that Philip doesn't return her attraction; Mio (KIRINA MANO), a woman fascinated by the female impersonators of the Kabuki theater; Griselda (TONI COLLETTE), a Norwegian born bank cashier turned nun; and Giulietta (MANNA FUJIWARA), a wheelchair bound woman who's missing her legs.

As the men attempt to realize their erotic fantasies, they soon learn that the various women they intended to dominate sexually are actually the stronger personalities, thus turning the tables on their plan.

The extreme amounts of rampant nudity might intrigue some teens, but it's doubtful many kids will want to see this picture unless they're fans of someone in the cast.
For strong sexual content including dialogue and pervasive nudity.
  • JOHN STANDING plays a middle-aged businessman whose grief over the recent death of his longtime wife sends him on a bizarre sexual journey that apparently involves having sexual relations with his son as well as definitely opening a personal brothel with his son for the purposes of living out their sexual fantasies.
  • MATTHEW DELAMERE plays his son who apparently has sex with his father (when not appearing nude with him) as well as with women in their brothel.
  • VIVIAN WU plays Philip's business associate and translator who ends up in their harem.
  • SHIZUKA INOH plays a Japanese woman so addicted to a casino game that she'll trade sex for credit.
  • BARBARA SARAFIAN plays the maid at Philip's Geneva estate who's attracted to her boss.
  • KIRINA MANO plays a woman so unhappy with her femininity that she's fascinated by female impersonators in the theater and eventually takes her own life.
  • TONI COLLETTE plays a bank cashier who apparently becomes a nun of some sort but still remains in the men's bordello.
  • AMANDA PLUMMER plays a woman with a fetish for her pig and horse, the latter of which she rides nude.
  • NATACHA AMAL plays a perpetually pregnant woman who offers to become that way again for the men for a tidy sum of cash.
  • MANNA FUJIWARA plays a woman who's missing her legs and is part of the bordello.
  • POLLY WALKER plays a woman involved with an actor who agrees to become Philip's "whore" for a year.


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.

    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).

    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated drama. A great deal of nudity occurs in the film, including both male and female full frontal and some rear nudity. A father and son seemingly have an incestuous encounter and then open a private brothel filled with an assortment of women with which they have sex. As such, some sexually related behavior is present, as is related dialogue.

    Profanity consists of several uses of the "f" word, while other expletives and colorful phrases also occur. Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, some drinking occurs, and a woman with a gambling problem threatens several people with a gun. Other violence is present, including an apparent suicide and a death caused by an earthquake (both occurring off camera).

    Due to the graphic nature of the nudity and sexual matters, you may want to examine our detailed content listings in that and other categories should you still be concerned about the film and its appropriateness for anyone in your home who wishes to see it.

  • After Philip comments on something relieving stress, Storey states that food, alcohol and sex are what do it for him.
  • Storey and Simato have champagne.
  • People drink wine after a play.
  • Philip, Storey and others have drinks.
  • Some of the women have drinks.
  • Philip and Storey have drinks.
  • We see a few drops of blood on some paper as well as some blood from Philip's nose after he's been punched.
  • We see some blood on Philip's front after having sex with a woman (and stating that her insides must be like a traffic accident).
  • We see several dead bodies, but beyond being dead, they aren't gory or bloody.
  • Some will obviously see the film as having both for the one-half of the title referring to a woman with no legs, and the men as having both not only for having an incestuous relationship, but for recruiting women to join their private bordello.
  • We learn that Beryl stole the horse she rides.
  • Some viewers won't like the portrayal of Griselda as something of a nun (in a sexual context).
  • There's some talk about a woman wanting to have an abortion.
  • We see some blood on Philip's front after having sex with a woman (and he states that her insides must be like a traffic accident).
  • Simmering from Philip rebuking her romantic advances, Clothilde tries getting even with him by putting poison into his milkshake (but a pig drinks it instead and dies).
  • Simato threatens several people at gunpoint.
  • It's possible some scenes listed under "Violence" may be tense or unsettling to some viewers.
  • Handgun: Held by Simato at Kito's head, shot into the air as a warning and then held on Philip and Storey.
  • Phrases: "Idiot," "Whore," "Bastards" and "What the hell."
  • We briefly see the image of a man holding a power drill to his head.
  • None.
  • None.
  • None.
  • At least 2 "f" words (1 used sexually), 15 slang terms for/using male genitals ("pr*ck" and "c*ck"), 5 hells, 9 uses of "God," 8 each of "My God" and "Oh my God," 3 each of "For God's sakes" and "Oh God," 2 each of "Jesus" and "Good Lord" and 1 use each of "G-damn," "For Christ's sakes," "Jesus Christ" and "Good God" as exclamations.
  • A woman partially pulls up her dress in a playful/suggestive manner.
  • Classic statues show full frontal female nudity.
  • We most of the bare butts of several competing Sumo wrestlers (in their traditional garb).
  • After Philip tells Storey about him being conceived in a certain bed, Storey says, "You weren't sleeping then," but Philip adds that he thinks his wife was.
  • Philip questions whether Storey is gay, but his son says while he likes his own "c*ck," but hasn't brought himself to like anyone else's. He then adds that when he was younger, he wished he was double-jointed so that he could kiss that part of his body goodnight. Philip then tells Storey that he should get a woman to "kiss your c*ck" and that he wishes Storey had brothers and sisters so that they could discuss sex with him.
  • Storey then asks his father if he ever did it (had sex) in the back of a Rolls Royce.
  • We see both rear and full frontal nudity, as both Storey and Philip stand nude in front of a mirror. After they stand there for a while, the depressed and grieving Philip gets into bed and Storey then follows him, scooting up against him in the "spoons" position (implying something sexual between the two - with Philip telling Storey that they couldn't make babies even if they tried).
  • Reprimanded for wearing white to his wife's funeral, Philip strips off all of his clothes at the outdoor cemetery (full frontal nudity) before redressing with parts of other men's donated garments.
  • After Philip comments on something relieving stress, Storey states that food, alcohol and sex are what do it better for him. After debunking the first two, Philip states that his wife is dead regarding that third element.
  • Commenting on an earlier occurrence, Philip states that he also wanted to sleep with his own father and then goes on about the engineering marvels of the human penis.
  • Watching the movie, "8 ," Philip questions whether the film's director, Fellini, slept with the women in his film or got his star to do it for him, and if such directors make such films to satisfy their own sexual fantasies.
  • There's talk about a female gambling addict having sex with the owners to earn more casino credits. This woman then states that she doesn't use contraceptives.
  • After walking in on Storey behind Simato preparing to have sex (but we don't see anything explicit), Philip comments that he didn't know that one could do it (sex) like that outside of novels or the cinema. Later, however, we see her in her open robe and see him at her crotch, but don't see anything explicit).
  • We briefly see Simato's bare butt and it's implied that she and Storey had sex. After Philip asks if they can do it again, Storey tells him to get his own woman.
  • While comparing one of the women to a character from a Jane Austen novel, Storey says that raw sex is the last thing one would encounter in a Jane Austen woman.
  • We see Simato's bare breasts.
  • A woman shows lots of cleavage.
  • We see a woman's bare breasts that Philip then caresses (while the woman is in a hospital bed in a transparent chest cast of sorts).
  • A woman comments on wanting to take others off for "a f*ck."
  • A woman comments about a man making her wait for the services of "his big, black c*ck," and this man comments about wanting to undress that woman in all sorts of places. We then learn that she wants to sleep with Philip and will be his "whore" for one year and she comments that if she'll be sharing his "pr*ck" with others, she'll want medical checkups.
  • We see a woman's full frontal nudity through a sheer/see-through gown she wears outside.
  • We hear the sound of Storey and Kito apparently having sex.
  • We see a woman's bare breast and butt in a bathtub and then see Storey in the tub with her, kissing her.
  • Griselda removes her clothes and we see her full frontal nudity.
  • We see some blood on Philip's front (full frontal nudity) after having sex with a woman (and he states that her insides must be like a traffic accident).
  • We see Beryl riding completely nude and bareback on a horse.
  • Philip comments about a sexual conversation with a woman about what position they should use to have sex (in front, him behind, in the garden or by the pool, standing or sitting with her heels in the air, etc.).
  • We see a brief shot of full frontal nudity of Philip and a woman while taking a shower together.
  • We see another woman's full frontal nudity.
  • A comment is made about a woman's former lover probably having "a twelve-inch c*ck."
  • Philip and Storey are forced to strip in a casino at gunpoint (we see full frontal and rear nudity of both men).
  • We see a completely nude woman riding a horse bareback.
  • We see Philip and Palmira sitting together nude (we see her bare back and butt). She puts some lotion/oil on her hands and then caresses his crotch (we don't see anything explicit).
  • A man caresses a woman's clothed breast.
  • None.
  • Philip and Storey must deal with the death of their wife/mother (the former initially grieving quite a bit).
  • A man must deal with his father's death.
  • What message the film was trying to impart.
  • The men creating their own personal brothel after apparently having an incestuous encounter with each other.
  • The fact that the women, who initially seem to be the weak victims here, eventually become the strong leaders and don't let the men take advantage of them.
  • Simato being willing to trade sex for credit at a casino where she's addicted to a particular gambling game.
  • A man punches Philip in the nose.
  • A woman falls from a horse and is apparently injured quite severely (we later see her in the hospital).
  • The men find a woman floating in a body of water (an apparent suicide via drowning).
  • Seething from Philip rebuking her romantic advances, Clothilde tries getting even with him by putting poison into his milkshake (but a pig drinks it instead and dies).
  • Simato holds a gun to Kito's head and fires a warning shot into the air. She then makes Philip and Storey strip at gunpoint.
  • Although we don't see the incident, a woman is killed in an earthquake (we do see the body afterwards).

  • Reviewed May 16, 2000 / Posted June 2, 2000

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