After reviewing This Ain’t Avatar XXX I was pretty sure porn couldn’t get that much worse, especially considering it had everything bad porn should; poorly painted blue people (who’s genitalia weren’t painted might I add), tacky music, horrible cut-to scenes, cheesy dialogue, a lack of sexual chemistry between performers, a plot that made little sense and a terrible 3D option that was migraine inducing. Basically put – it was bad, real bad.
When I saw Zazel: The Scent Of Love, a 2008 movie that had previously won 7 AVN awards, being offered for review on Eden Fantasys I quickly scooped it up. Unfortunately to my shock, horror and surprise it was just as bad as This Ain’t Avatar, dare I say on some levels – possibly even worse.
Side Note: They fail to mention the awards were won back in 1998 when the movie was originally released, not in 2008 when it was re-released. What can I say, it’s false advertising at its best! It did win a 2009 AVN award for “Best Classic Release” though.
When it came to the plot there really wasn’t much, if anything, to go on: a woman (“Zazel”, played by Sasha Vinni) receives a call from a nameless man informing her that the proposal to create “the most arousing perfume ever” has gotten the go ahead. Zazel then sets out to find the perfect ingredients which include “Lust” (Hell), “Sensuality” (Heaven), “Pleasure” (Desire) and “Enchantment” (Mystic). From there the film bounces around from scene to scene with her having sordid love affairs with exotic flowers, randomly wandering around in a garden, painting, airbrushing, drawing and daydreaming about various sexual explorations. Pretty run of the mill for porn these days.
*random excerpts from our conversation while watching have been included
The film begins with Zazel feverishly drawing a Coy fish by a pond, which eventually turns into a “” resembling one of those damn Avatars who swims, plays and dances in the water (make shift pool is more like it) in front of a yellow tarp (wtf that was about I have no clue) and eventually leads to a cunnilingus scene with a “Water Nymph” (played by Grace Harlow), who might I add wears some seriously fun white zipper crotched panties.
For the record, it was a far better paint job then the one we found in Avatar.
Jamie:”You promised me this would be nothing like that stupid Avatar movie! WHY IS THAT LADY PAINTED BLUE??!!”
Jamie: *at the sight of the fun white zipper panties* “It’s like she over stayed her welcome from the cock rock era”
Me: “Imagine getting one of your labia caught in that mess ~ ouch!”
The painting of a beautiful flower behind a white frame that begins to contract and move, quickly making it apparent that the artwork has been done on a woman’s genitals and lower portion of her body (inner thigh etc).
Trust me, CLICK THE PICTURE –>
Me: “wow, that’s some amazing artwork…hey, wait a minute, is that a…oh my God, that’s a coochie!”
Jamie: “why the hell does she keep poking at it? Even I know better than to do that!”
Then, out of nowhere Sasha Vinni is shaving a woman’s (Lene Hefner) pubic hair with an old style gold razor so that an artist (Devin Deray) can tattoo a flower on her vulva…which obviously leads to the three of them having sex.
Me: “yeah, because after I’ve had someone inflict 1000 needle jabs to my vag the first thing I want to do is get laid”
Jamie: “aren’t you supposed to put a bandage on a tattoo after you get one? How are they going to bandage that?’
Me: “I don’t know, a diaper maybe?”
Jamie: “Jesus honey, she didn’t shit herself!”
*I proceed to burst out laughing so hard he has to stop the film
Next up is Sasha Vinni (again…) painted like a tiger with her hair in cornrows, writhing and crawling around a random jungle. This entire scene goes back and forth between her being a “tiger” – complete with ‘rawring’ – and a faceless woman’s ass painted like a tiger having sex with a man. Totally random, not at all hot, very cool body paint work. For the most part, it just looked like a big tiger was eating a hot dog. Also, get your sweet tiger poster here. Not into Tigers, what about some Zoobooks?
Zazel has more random sex with flowers. *Booooooring!
Three women (Sasha Vinni, Brooke Lane and Anna Romero) dressed in garb even Lady Gaga wouldn’t touch (17th-century-style period costume, not very tastefully done either) strip, make-out and perform cunnilingus on one another. Eventually the scene leads to 2 of the women pulling out dick shaped rubber/latex spurs and attaching them to the back of their boots. As expected, they have sex with the fun dick spurs. *Quite possibly one of the more interesting ‘wtf’ moments of the film.
Jamie: “Why is there minstrel music playing?”
Me: *in all seriousness while referring to the cat from Shrek* “Why do they all look like puss in boots?”
Jamie: “did you really just say that?”
Me: “I want a fun feather in a hat like that!”
Jamie: “no, no you don’t”
Me: “those are not rubber dicks! they can’t be! wait…I…what the f*ck?! Okay that’s actually rather genius, though they really shouldn’t be using rubber, that’s just cheap and icky”
More diddling by Zazel with flowers…
Fade from black to 3 female angels (Sasha Vinni, Brooke Lane and Helena) and one male angel (Antonio Valentino) with huge wings he can’t seem to maneuver, all painted with sparkly glitter, hair in knots piled on their heads and the most boring looks on their faces. The ladies participate in various sexual acts (lots of making out, nipple play, touching and cunnilingus) while the male angel only mildly participates (caresses breasts, licks nipples etc). Eventually it leads to sex, with the same bored expressions and lack luster body glitter stealing the scene.
Random cut to a black and white scene from what looks like the inside of a barn, with a woman (Gina LaMarca) on a bed wearing white pasties and panties, dancing erotically (basically stripping) for a male observer (Jon Severini). Before long the clothes are off and the two of them are going at it on the bed. In an epic unexpected moment Jon blows his load – way past her body – and the two of them somehow end up frolicking in a pool. Because sex in a barn should always lead to playing in a pool. Duh.
As if the last scene wasn’t random or pointless enough we now find Zazel dressed in a costume of half man/half woman and tangoing back and forth in front of the camera while a woman with a shaved head and fun, sparkly clothes pins on her nipples gives oral sex to a perfume bottle. During the whole scene Zazel explains the opposites and balance of male/female.
Me: “Oh My God, are those really bedazzled clothes pegs on her nipples”
Jamie: “No…wait…yes, yes they are fun sparkly clothes pegs on her nipples. Wow, didn’t see that one coming”
Random mermaid lesbian sex with Zazel and another female (Nikki St. Gilles) on an iceberg that rocks back and forth on top of the water, and may or may not lead to a possible case of motion sickness of the viewer(s). Unless you’re into that kind of thing you may want to fast forward this one.
In the second to last scene Zazel is doodling or drawing in a book (I honestly lost interest by this point) and has visions of a “She-Devil” ( Anna Romeo) dressed in a fire engine red latex costume (think The Cell meets Legend), complete with latex horns, boots, open-assed shorts and a long pointed devil’s tail crammed in her butt (not kidding). After Zazel nods off to sleep (while drawing) the “She-Devil” sneaks behind and cuts her head off with a scythe, she then drops the head on the table and proceeds to climb on the table, making the decapitated head perform oral sex on her (I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried).
During the entire scene (and the rest of the “Hell” scenes to follow) the bottom half of the screen is filled with digitally superimposed flames. And here I thought the 3D effects from This Ain’t Avatar XXX were migraine inducing, I’ve never wanted to scream “JUST MAKE IT STOP!!” so badly.
Zazel awakens from the dream holding her throat and we find the “She-Devil” strutting and dancing in front of a fire place, she then walks over to one side of the mantle and a “stone” structure turns into a gargoyle (Kevin James) who she peels paint off of. The scene continues with the She-Devil having sex with the gargoyle and a “Demon Man” (Drew Rees), which ends in a dp scene.
The film ends with a monologue by Zazel, wrapped in a robe, once again randomly wandering in a garden and babbling about beauty, pussy, sexuality or some other mouthful of poorly scripted garbage. As many of you can probably tell by the time the movie was over I had enough.
Being that there wasn’t any scripted dialogue between the actors there really isn’t much to cover. Having said that I wish they had used a professional voice actress for the internal monologue/thought process of Zazel. Not only did she come off as a totally fake and forced version of what someone might consider a ‘timid female’, but her attempt at being sexy caused the exact opposite effect, sounding amateurish, monotone, cheesy and the least compelling I’ve ever heard.
It probably wouldn’t have been so bad had her narration been few and far between, instead it was present every scene and between scenes while she wad diddling flowers or painting vaginas – basically put, it got old fast, real fast!
Aside from the fact that it was outdated there were other aspects of this film that made it rather hard to watch;
- All the sex scenes were void of passion or feeling. No one looked interested, aroused, excited or like they were really enjoying it. Maybe it was a lack of chemistry. Maybe it was a lack of talent. Maybe it was the director wanting it to be ‘artistic’. Or maybe it was all of the above. Either way we fast forwarded through every sex scene and ended up far less turned on then when we began.
- On that note, the sex scenes go on far too long which makes it even harder to watch (pun not intended). With a 126 minute run time, this movie could have easily been cut down to 70 – 90 minutes, which may have made it a bit more enticing.
- Although there is no scripted dialogue you often see the actors talking dirty to each other yet can’t hear what they’re saying, something both of us found rather disappointing.
Don’t get me wrong, Zazel has a lot going for it; the cinematography is visually stunning with lush back drops that stir the imagination, the costumes – though outdated – are for the most part creative, extravagant, awe inspiring and interesting, the artwork, including body painting, drawings and vaginal ‘tattoos’ is beautifully done, some of the scenes are compelling, shocking and cross lines I’ve never seen in a porn before (the decapitated head/oral sex scene for one), and the lack of dialogue between performers allowed me to watch without the constant snickering or giggles many other adult movies beget.
It’s also a movie I could see some viewers really appreciating, especially those that are off put by the visuals and intensity ‘hard core’ gonzo movies provide.
Sasha Vinni – Zazel/Blue Siren/Tiger/Brunette Musketeer/Female Angel/Mermaid * Grace Harlow – Water Nymph * Lene Hefner – Tattooed Girl * Devin Deray – Tattoo Artist * Anna Romero – Redhead Musketeer/Body Double for Female Angel/She-Devil * Brooke Lane – Blonde Musketeer/Female Angel * Antonio Valentino – Winged Male Angel * Helena – Female Angel * Gina LaMarca – Seductress * Jon Severini – Man * Nikie St. Gilles – Blonde Beauty/Mermaid * Kevin James – Gargoyle/Body Double for Winged Male Angel * Drew Reese – Demon Man
Director – Philip Mond * Producer – Marco * Music – Dino and Earl Ninn * Cinematographer – Philip Mond * Editor– James Avalon * Distributor – Metro Interactive * Budget– $237,000
Listed as “26th” in “The 101 Greatest Adult Tapes Of All Time” by AVN Magazine * AVN Awards (1998) – Best All-Sex Film/Best Group Scene/Best Cinematography/Best Art Direction/Best Editing/Best Overall Marketing Campaign/Best Selling Tape of the Year * AVN Award (2009) – Best Classic Release
If you’re looking for a movie full of sex scenes that are visually compelling rather than sexually exciting, contains little to no dialogue, sex scenes that border on soft-core, elaborate costumes and ventures far from the ‘standard’ adult film formula the market seems to be flooded with, you might just want to check out Zazel: The Scent Of Love.
On the other hand, if you prefer a movie that has all of the above and chemistry, dialogue, witty banter and no migraine inducing graphics, I suggest opting for a movie like Pirates instead.