While all this is intense and fascinating stuff, the chronological structure creates a bridge I couldn't cross.

On the one hand, the technical execution of the to and fro was handled well - it's impressive how different degrees of a receding hairline can create a sense of time.

Although some nuances are lost, that ends up challenging the viewer and keeping him engaged.

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Tinto Brass - The maestro of Italian erotica is back! is a collection of six stories based on the joys of sexuality and the eroticism of a new generation of women.

A happily married 24-year-old woman who experiences an inexplicable, rather restless craving to finally live her life intensely, retells her extra-marital escapades to her husband intending to spice up their marriage.

More important though is how Ana and Toma react to change, in particular to Ana's gradual self- empowerment (thanks to a mixture of religion and psychoanalysis), which fundamentally alters Toma's role as 'the saviour'.

It all becomes a matter of identity, of shaping and losing it, as defined by relationship roles, rather than intrinsic traits.

There is a sitting area and a kitchen equipped with a dishwasher. You can play tennis at the property, and the area is popular for horseback riding.

Saint-Tropez is 21 miles from mon amour, and Saint-Raphaël is 21 miles away.

Those scenes have a sense of caricature about them, with 'traditional' values of partner screening proving funny and harrowing at the same time.

But they prove to be just pieces of an ambitious human puzzle, which ends up taking us down an exploratory route devoid of superfluous emotion.

Held up for UK release for over four years, this heavily-touted tale of Charlotte Rampling humping a chimpanzee turns out to be no more than a feature-length tease. Oshima fumbles around with the basic plot involving British diplomat Higgins' bizarre reaction to the news that his wife (Rampling) is getting it on with a primate — being a true patriot he prefers that idea to her going horizontal with Johnny Frenchman — and the whole thing lumbers along like a dead-weight farce as poor Higgins tries des­perately to find out what exactly goes on in bed between Rampling and the man-in-a-monkey-suit.

It all tries for a satirical tone somewhere between Bunuel and Noel Coward and it all falls tragically flat on its face.

It's a shame, because there is so much pain and sacrifice in Ana, Mon Amour that it really makes love feel like penance and weaves an exquisite psychological pattern to justify the claim.