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Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle (Quality X) Blu-ray Review

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    Ian Jane
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  • Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle (Quality X) Blu-ray Review

    Click image for larger version  Name:	cover.jpg Views:	1 Size:	26.6 KB ID:	427311

    Released by: Quality X
    Released on: November 28th, 2023.
    Director: Annie Sprinkle, Joe Sarno
    Cast: Annie Sprinkle, Ron Jeremy, Barbara Miller, Lee Starr, Roger Ram, Bobby Soccie, Marc Valentine, Mal O’Rae
    Year: 1982
    Purchase From Melusine

    Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle – Movie Review:

    The ‘golden girl of porn' (before being called a ‘golden girl' inferred you looked like Bea Arthur or Estelle Getty), Ellen Steinberg, better known to smut fans the world over as Ms. Annie Sprinkle, remains one of the most beloved female performers from the golden age of pornography. Now retired from performing on film (well, sort of - she still pops up here and there and she's still alive and well and can be visited online at http://www.anniesprinkle.org(asm)!), she certainly left one Hell of a legacy. A vivacious performer and a natural beauty, this Pennsylvania native who fell into the seventies New York porno scene took sex seriously. So seriously, in fact, that she's dedicated her post-film life to teaching sex education. She currently travels around the country speaking to the merits of tantric sex and plenty of other interesting subjects and she also works as a performance artist. More than just another pretty face, Annie's a bright gal (she holds a Ph.D.!) with a good head on her shoulders who knew exactly what she was doing when she willingly got into the business. Think of her as the anti-Lovelace, a woman who embraced her chosen career with gusto and who really made the most of it.

    To get back on track, or at least more closely in tune with the movie at hand, Annie was a pretty big deal in the seventies and early eighties NYC porn community. In 1981, she teamed up with one of the kings of softcore filmmaking, Joseph W. Sarno (who was cashing in on a stint making hardcore pictures) and co-directed Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle. The film enjoyed a wildly successful theatrical release through rights holder Distribpix/Video-X-Pix. That film did huge box office numbers, and rightly so, it's as fun as it is sexy.

    The movie starts off with Ms. Sprinkle talking to the audience about her life and her work, before showing off a few choice Polaroids, some of which show her as a kid! Sitting beside a candelabra in an evening gown that barely contains her ample rack, she sips a glass of white wine and eventually moves closer to the camera before walking out of the room - at which point we notice two oiled up men arm wrestling on her carpeted floor. She moves in on the guys, David Messa and Roger Ram, and sucks them both off.

    From there, she moves into a room where Chrissie Beauchamp is waiting for her. The two ladies get it on, stripping out of their lingerie and using the mirrors on the walls to their advantage as they do what rad lesbians do. The scene culminates in a great bit where Annie uses her biggest assets to rub Chrissie until she climaxes. A young, and surprisingly svelte, Ron Jeremy comes into the room and Annie works him over with the same way before she lies on her back so that Chrissie can do what needs to be done as Ron bones her jugs until he ultimately makes a big ol' mess. Everyone’s having a great time!

    In the next scene, Annie sports a hot little latex outfit. She moves in on Marc Valentine, who is lying face down on her bed. In a move rarely seen in adult films from this era, she takes charge and eats his ass before getting down on all fours to let him respond in kind. It escalates from there before she moves on from Marc to Mal O'Rae, who lies on his back so she can grind into him and give him a show. This is the scene that was cut on previous releases (the previous Distribpix Special Edition being the exception as it was restored on that release), and it is presented completely intact here, golden shower and all. They move into a sixty-nine and then she rides him before she squirts/wizzes all over him. It's a much, much wetter version of the scene (literally) than the trimmed version, released previously (the liner notes confirm that the footage was previously cut to avoid obscenity charges). This segues nicely into a scene with Barbara Miller, Heather Young, Judy Bilodeau, Lisa B., Sheila Jones, and Annie Sprinkle, all of whom get nicely dolled up in some lingerie and spend a good bit of time getting down with one another in a fancy, ornately decorated room.

    Once that fantastic lesbian orgy is over with (it's a good one!), Annie goes solo for a few minutes atop her bed before busting out one of those massive old school vibrators and going to town with it. After this, Annie heads to midtown Manhattan where she wanders into the long gone Orleans Theater where a marathon showing of her films is taking place. She sits down in the theater where a couple of male patrons - Jack Teague, Mike Feline and Michael Gaunt - are delighted to see her make an appearance, particularly when she gang bangs all three of them at the same time until everyone has been taken care of.

    Next, Annie takes us from a grindhouse to a photo studio where Buddy Hatton is working with Bunny Hatton - the pair rose to some notoriety for making odd, fetish wrestling films. Annie, wearing some spiffy blue hot pants, grabs the camera as she talks to us about what she's got in mind for the couple. She snaps some shots of Bunny's bush and then dives right in to get herself. They play with a string of beads before Buddy moves into the frame and gets himself a double treat that runs into a pretty enthusiastic three-way.

    The last scene lets Annie, standing somewhere in Brooklyn from the looks of things, wax nostalgic while the skyline of an early eighties New York City shines behind her before she heads inside where she finds Ron Hudd waiting for her. They have sex and then we get one last ‘Annie vignette' where she talks to us in front of the Brooklyn Bridge to finish off the feature as the music, featuring her moans and groans over top, comes up over the end credits.

    A fairly traditional hardcore film that doubles as a cult of personality piece, Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle is a whole lot of good, dirty fun. Annie's personality is all over this one, from the opening and closing narration to the talky bits and set ups that separate the ‘fantasies' that make up the hardcore quotient in the film. The picture is very nicely shot and it makes great use of the New York City locations. A few interesting and introspective moments show us that Annie took this project pretty seriously and the results are all up there on the screen for us to enjoy. The film’s leading lady throws herself into each and every scene and clearly loves what she’s doing here.

    Even if the story isn't particularly deep, the picture is so well made and so well performed and Annie's personality is so infectious that you can't help but really dig this one, truly the perfect blend of spank-worthy sex scenes and interesting/amusing personality work that would set the scene for a lot of pictures to come.

    Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle – Blu-ray Review:

    The Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle arrives on a 50GB region free Blu-ray in an AVC encoded 1080p high definition transfer framed at 1.37.1, newly scanned and restored in 4k from its original 35mm negative. The aforementioned special edition DVD release looked good for its time but this is a pretty substantial upgrade over that edition and, unlike that DVD, there’s no watermarking on the image during the sex scenes. There are a few shots that look softer than others, almost certainly due to how the movie was shot, but overall this is a really impressive transfer. Detail is very strong here, leaving the older DVD in the dust in that department, and color reproduction looks perfect. Skin tones are always nice and natural and black levels are deep and strong. There are no problems with any compression issues and there are no problems with any noticeable noise reduction or edge enhancement. There’s virtually no print damage to note, the image is pretty much spotless, while the picture never looks anything less than perfectly film-like. There’s nothing to complain about here at all, the transfer is excellent.

    The English language 24-bit DTS-HD 2.0 Mono track is solid. Optional subtitles are provided in English only. No problems to note here, the audio is clean, clear and nicely balanced with some decent depth given to the score and perfectly audible dialogue. Hiss and distortion are never problematic, though there is some minor sibilance in spots, and this sounds quite good.

    The biggest extra is the commentary from Annie Sprinkle herself, carried over from the special edition DVD. Annie admits that she never played the piano in the opening scene before telling us about how she made this film hoping to really connect with the audience through this movie. As we all know, with age comes wisdom, and Annie talks about how she's sure she's a much better lover now than she was when she made this film in her twenties, and as the film plays out she reminisces about her co-stars, the locations that were used, where some of the wardrobe came from (she notes that the dress she wears in the opening came from Macys!) and what's happened to a lot of the people in this film in the years that have passed. This is a pretty thorough track, covering everything from the importance of penis size when shooting big breast scenes to popular styles of the day to the film's prestigious theatrical premiere and how exciting it was for her. There are a few times where Annie, who tells us she's watching the film on a laptop while recording this track, clams up ever so briefly but she's rarely at a loss for words here as she points out what makes this movie different from other dirty movies of the era. Of course, she talks about the female ejaculation scene in the movie, talks about golden showers she's had both on and off camera, and how it's important to drink a lot of water before shooting a scene like that and how she would attend golden shower parties in her younger days! She talks about how she was bound and determined to really orgasm on screen in the film, how she really did go into theaters showing her movies and have sex with audience members in her personal life, and how sex education has helped people in general just get better at doing it. Pretty much everything you could want to know about this film is covered here, and Annie isn't in the least bit modest about talking up her experiences here and in her personal life as well. It's a pretty revealing track that provides a really intimate look into where she was at as a person when the picture was made, how her life has changed since then, and which allows her to really philosophize about her experiences in the adult film industry of the time and about life in general.

    Also carried over from the special edition DVD is a thirty-nine minute interview titled ‘Deeper Inside Annie Spinkle’ where Ms. Sprinkle tells us we're going to ‘take a walk down mammary lane and remember the bad old days.' She begins by talking about how not all porn stars lead tragic and downtrodden lives as she explains how her life has evolved over the years. She talks about her years in New York City, her work in the porno movies of the era, describing many of her sexual experiences and how she got into making adult films. She talks about meeting Damiano and Lovelace and how she wound up working for Kirt Films and Distribpix. She talks about some of her early films like Teenage Deviate, later working with Joe Sarno, dealing with legal problems during this era in adult filmmaking, and her attitude towards making adult movies and why they're important from a political perspective. She talks about her parents thoughts on her career, some of the negative experiences she had in the adult industry, how trends in pubic hair have changed over the years and how she considers porn performance art. She talks about where her nom de porn came from, how she got a reputation as a ‘girl who would do anything' and the importance of having a good film crew to work with on a feature like Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle. Sitting there with a coffee in hand, Annie's in great spirits here and is obviously really enjoying talking about her experiences not just with this specific film but in the adult film industry in general.

    Rounding out the disc are hard and soft theatrical trailers, an original promo trailer and an archival image gallery as well as animated menus and chapter selection options.

    If that weren't enough, inside the keepcase is a twenty-seven page color booklet of liner notes from adult film historian ‘Benson Hurst' which detail Annie's trip to adult stardom, the history and shooting schedule of this production, it's cast, and its impact. They liners also cover the history of the production house that made the movie and its key players. This release also comes with some reversible cover sleeve art, featuring newly created art on one side and the original poster art on the reverse and, if purchased directly from Melusine, you can opt to purchase the disc with a limited edition spot gloss slipcover designed by Richard Hilliard.

    Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle - The Final Word:

    A wonderfully made and rather infectiously joyful celebration of sexual freedom and liberation, Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle still holds up really well decades since it was made. It's not only a steamy slice of erotica but it's a fascinating time capsule of a different era of adult filmmaking and Quality X has done a great job bringing it to Blu-ray in a beautiful presentation and has also carried over the extra features from the older DVD release that do a great job of documenting its history, its cast, its impact, and especially its star.




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    Ian Jane
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    Last edited by Ian Jane; 02-19-2024, 10:17 AM.
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