Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sexual Turn-ons; Erotica or Pornography?

                                                 
Yesterday Turner Classic Movies was showing the 60's era flick "Sex and The Single Girl".  Produced to capitalize on Helen Gurley Brown's best selling book of that era, the film was a comedy and absolutely no graphic sex was shown.  Yet, there is one scene in that movie that I consider one of the most erotic scenes I've ever seen on screen.  Tony Curtis, pretending to be a patient, is attempting to seduce Natalie Wood, a therapist.  Without a single grope, without a single attempt at nudity, the two actors are able to gin up some serious heat, just with gesture, facial expression, tone of voice, and breathing patterns.  Wow!

That got me to thinking about why I prefer erotica to pornography.  When I was younger I watched my share of pornography.  As with all porno, the scenes are graphic and leave nothing to the imagination.  Sadly, they are also mechanical and demeaning.  Perhaps worse, they are boring after the first five minutes; there are only so many things that can be done to and with the human body and, after the first titalation of nudity, the action becomes boring.  Erotica, on the other hand, leaves much to the imagination; it presents a blank slate of erotic possibilities, with you as the creator!

I don't know how you folks feel about pornography but I'll take the erotic over the pornographic every time.  In addition to Sex and The Single Girl, the following films contain scenes that are extremely sexy without an iota of nudity and hyper "friction":

In Hitchcock's "North By Northwest" watch the verbal foreplay between Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint in the club car of the train bound for New York.  Pure magic!

"The More The Merrier":  Another comedy, this time starring Joel McCrea and lovely Jean Arthur.  The scene between McCrea and Jean Arthur on the steps outside Arthur's apartment are steamy, and achieved by words, his hand brushing down her arm, a dance of kisses down her neck.  Arthur's ability to portray attraction and resistance simultaneously seals the deal on this highly erotic moment.

The original "Thomas Crown Affair" with Steve McQueen and Faye Dunnaway.  It's the chess scene.  The erotic magic is achieved with the eyes, a flick of tongue over the lips and Dunnaway's fondle of the Knight chess piece which leaves McQueen dry-mouthed, trying to muster up a single drop of spit in order to swallow.  Erotic beyond belief.

In "Charade"the lovely Audrey Hepburn spends much of the film trying to seduce an older Cary Grant.   She uses her beauty and those dancing almond eyes to lure him in.  During one moment of Grant's resisting Hepburn, frustrated, says to Grant "you know what's wrong with you?"..."what", grunts Grant.  "Absolutely nothing!", she purrs.  Movie magic!

Frank Capra's "It's A Wonderful Life".  About half way through the movie, Jimmy Stewart, after having his dreams of adventure and a new career dashed repeatedly by life's circumstances, has dropped by Donna Reed's home.  Reed's character is deeply in love with Stewart.  She is longing for him to make his move and commit to her.  He's so attracted to Reed that he can't think straight but knows if he succumbs he'll be stuck in Bedford Falls for the rest of his life.  They are sparring in the parlor when a out of town caller interrupts the conversation.  The caller wants to speak to both of them so they move close to each other, each leaning an ear toward the ear piece.  As they talk to the caller there are all kinds of physical things happening to them, totally apart from the conversation.  Finally, Stewart slams the phone down, grabs Reed by the arms, jerks her violently to him and protests again his need to get away and not be tied down to her, even by love...Reed bursts into tears and Jimmy puts a kiss on her that is somehow both brutal but needy and tender, all at the same time...next scene...the two are married.  Erotica in the most unlikely place, while Mother is watching from the top of the staircase!

I'm sure most of you have your own ideas of movie magic.  But I'll bet that most of you prefer erotic scenes that "leave a little room for you" than the mechanistic and exploitive nature of pornography.










3 comments:

Ken said...

Now there is a huge deviation from your recent bill of fare...
A woman I used to date asked me what was the most erotic part on the human body? While I fumbled around for the answer,she said, "the brain". How very true, eh? She was the most exiting woman I have ever known, that's a fact.
I had to laugh at erotica in "It's a Wonderful Life", good one. I'll have to watch it now, I just finished watching "Soylent Green".

JustCommonSense said...

hi Ken. You never know what I'll write about next. Actually, sometimes something just kicks around in my brain, unknowing to me and simmers. The Natalie Wood flick shown on TCM yesterday had prompted me to thinking about that scene, which I had seen many, many times. Then, last night, I went to bed and was just about to drift off when I remembered that scene and it wouldn't let me sleep. Unwillingly I started writing the blog in my head and it sounded like a good one...I then had to get up, go to my desk, jot down a note to myself for this morning so as not to forget. I then went back to bed and got to sleep right away having felt assured that I'd write it in the morning.
Soylent green was a sad and depressing one indeed! The only good thing about that movie was Leigh Taylor Young whom I consider one of lushest, sexiest woman I've ever seen in my life.
Thanks for visiting.

JustCommonSense said...

P.S. i agree with your old girlfriend.