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Overall Rating
2.79

Awesome: 7.14%
Worth A Look50%
Average: 0%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 42.86%

2 reviews, 2 user ratings


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Bare Behind Bars
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by Jack Sommersby

"Chock-full of Sin and Undiluted Fun"
4 stars

Yeah, there've been more than a fair share of women-prison flicks, but this one leaves the others in the dust, believe me.

Bare Behind Bars is, hands down, the most nudity- and sex-filled feature-length film I've ever seen. Sure, it's a sexploitation picture of the women-in-prison subgenre, so lots of skin isn't exactly a big surprise, but, unlike others of its ilk, not five minutes goes by without nudity, and the sex that's on display is graphic -- vaginal intercourse is given the kind of loving close-ups seen in an X-rated porno. Actually, thanks to the home-video company Blue Underground, Bare Behind Bars is presented in its restored X-rated glory, so, technically, it is a pornographic film. Where most films of this type have sporadic nudity, this one is chock-full of both it and sex to such a high degree it leaves everything else in the dust. But what's surprising about the film as a whole is how entertaining it is -- it holds us fascinated throughout with its unapologetic exploitation in much the same way as Joel M. Reed's Bloodsucking Freaks did, only there's less flab and boring talking-heads scenes to get in the way. One thing's for sure: You've never seen anything like Bare Behind Bars before.

Taking place in a Brazilian women's prison, the film opens with the women playing a recreational game outside when one of them is stabbed. This results in a fire hose being sprayed upon them to break the crowd up, even though it's more of an excuse to afford us a wet-T-shirt-like view of these very pretty inmates. It's a dirty, unregulated prison, with several women in a single cell and rats galore providing plenty of company. The warden is a martinet who allows the women little leeway, and on the side she's running a white-slave operation, selling the plumbs of the bunch for two-hundred-thousand apiece. There's a nurse on duty, only she's a quintessential blonde bimbo: she won't turn an inmate in for a found switchblade if she'll indulge in some massage-and-sex action with her; she's orgiastically fond of raspberry pudding and so dense she wraps someone's neck rather than the injured arm. And the jailers have it good, too: when they're not screwing the men who make the supply deliveries to the place, they're licking their lips in ecstasy as the women indulge in an orgy in the shower.

If there's anything resembling a story, it comes way on down the line, involving the rebellious inmate #578 who manipulates the lesbian warden into staging -- are your ready? -- a church service so as to provide the opportunity for an escape. There's a subplot involving one of the women who's sold to a rich woman, who keeps the woman on a luxurious island, though nothing of consequence comes of it -- if anything, it's admittedly shocking in that we see both women in bikinis rather than in the buff (though the skimpy clothes do come off eventually, of course). There's some torture action going on involving chained women spread-eagled on a table and sprayed with water, though we never actually see the deaths; at one point, one of the jailers remarks that they're going to have to enlarge the cemetery, which might whet the appetites of gore hounds yet will also disappoint in that only wrapped corpses are later seen. And, finally, the last fifteen minutes involve three escapees being pursued through out the slums of the city by a gang of not-so-nice policemen. No lawyers or judges or parole hearings or anything of the like, just good old-fashioned visceralness, thank goodness.

For material for this to work as well as it does, it's a must that the filmmaker unapologetically show not so much as an iota of shame, and luckily writer/director Oswaldo De Oliveira accomplishes this. Whenever there's dialogue, it's of the groan-inducing variety, but he keeps these scenes terse and short, electing instead to dedicate more screen time to his sex-filled set pieces that even brings in a giant pineapple dildo for grand effect. It helps that practically all of the women are lookers, which makes it easy on the eyes but not on the mind -- you wonder what all these beautiful Caucasians are doing in a South American prison instead of walking the runways in a fashion show or gracing the cover of Penthouse magazine. Of course, the graphic sex doesn't hurt matters, either -- you're left befuddled over how far the sex actually goes, with Oliveria's camera going places you never quite expect. And you get a variety of women here: blondes and brunettes (no red-heads, though); some non-whites; breasts sizes of almost all varieties (though no D-cups; sorry); and lots of tan lines (which is something that's in short display in this day and age of tanning-bed actresses). All in all, I can't think of a whole lot that Bare Behind Bars doesn't deliver. Oh, there's a shortage of blood as mentioned earlier involved with the killings (excepting one heck of a castration), but who's to throw stones when bodacious boobies out the kazoo are thrown into the mix as often as a clip to the neck in a wrestling match? The name of the game here is skin, skin, and more skin, and I can't think of another film that sates the appetite for it as appeasingly as this one. It's not Oscar-caliber stuff, I assure you, but it's deserving of some kind of award for its effort.

Makes you question the sanity of people who'd rather look at Playboy or Penthouse rather than this sinful little classic.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=6065&reviewer=327
originally posted: 12/03/06 06:20:15
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User Comments

8/19/09 mr.mike Comes close to being the Mother of all WIP flicks. 4 stars
10/21/03 penkala The Plan 9 from Outer Space of the sexploitation genre. I love it!! 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  02-Feb-1980 (NR)
  DVD: 30-May-2006

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