Story of O, directed by Just Jaeckin, is the 1975 cinematographic adaptation of the French novel Histoire d´O, written by Pauline Réage in 1954.
This groundbreaking and scandalous novel let us peak and discover the BDSM world and, because of this, it earned its place in the history of erotic literature and is considered a classic.
We had previously covered in one of the sections of Cinema Junkies the morbid world of paraphilias. Now, we will go back to the 70s and review a more classic film of the erotic genre.
The film in question is no other than Story of O, specifically, we will focus on the 1975 release. This version, directed by Just Jaeckin, was starred by a spectacular Cotinne Cléry as the main character.
There have been some sequels to this film but I can´t speak much about them because I haven´t watched them. The producer also released in 2007 a series called The Training of O.
Corinne Cléry (who later starred as Bond Girl in Moonraker in 1979) plays O, a photographer by occupation, with a submissive heart who wishes to obey René, her lover.
Her initiation into the arts of BDSM takes place in a luxurious castle on the outskirts. There, O will have to demonstrate her submissive qualities by bearing the punishments and humiliations imposed by other men whom her lover has entrusted. Among them, there is Sir Stephen, René´s half-brother.
The punishments include being whipped, fucked and shared by other men, various painful tests, etc. O will pass all these tests virtued by her love for René.
But O won´t stay in the castle forever. René takes her to different masters based on her training level as a slave. With every change of master, the aesthetic of the house and the fetishism for fashion also change.
As time goes by, she realises that René is not in love with her, since his punishments don’t have the same intensity as before. He finally decides to transfer O to her present master.
She confesses that she wishes to stay with him forever and both end up falling in love. Her master and lover, Sir Stephen, asks her to prove her loyalty and sends her to a country house, where she will have to pass one last test.
In that house, her sex will be pierced and she will be marked by fire and shared among more men.
The film possesses varied settings, creating a characteristic aesthetic. First, she is the castle, truly medieval style, where stunning practically naked slaves serve their masters. This castle is full of dungeons and luxurious stoned halls. Later on, we see a country house with a more neoclassic, pretentious taste.
Besides the settings and fashion, we learn the dynamics of domination and submission. We can see how a good master or slave must be, the punishments and rewards, the nonspoken rules, the complete trust with your body and the constant obedience.
If these dynamics turn you on, don’t hesitate to visualize this representation of pleasure and pain.
Remember! Sex is not the focus of the film, only one of its ingredients!