“In the Shadows of Darth Vader” (Star Wars fan short stories)

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Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  Straight from somewhere in Leilah Publications’ lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures within our solar system, alien monsters, classic vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your Nerdy download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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Based on Star Wars created by George Lucas

In the Shadows of Darth Vader” Copyright © John F. Rychlicki III Leilah Publications 2016

Cloud City, Bespin system, Interior VADER’S STAR DESTROYER – BRIDGE

Lieutenant Commander Jorin Clovis had only seen Darth Vader with his own eyes once, prior to his promotion and reassignment from Engineering.  He was off duty after pulling two shifts in Engineering when he was walking alone, silently gazing into deep space on the Command Deck.  Lost in thought, he wondered when he would see his home again on Corellia.  He heard it first.  The slow cadence of mechanized breathing.  Clovis froze.  He heard all the terrible stories of the Dark Lord of the Sith.  A creature that should be dead, rumors of his rise from the Jedi cult and mastery of ancient dark sorcery.  He believed all the stories, how the Dark Lord choked officers to death with the invisible grasp of his unnatural sorcery.  He was paralyzed with terror.

The mechanized breathing grew nearer.  Clovis had to force himself to tilt his head slightly and glance to the exterior corridor leading to the Command Bridge.  What he saw was a black cloaked nightmare, enshrouded in ebon amor striding through the corridor. Before he realized he had been holding his breath for nearly a minute, the Dark Lord exited past the long corridor and disappeared through the doors.  Clovis exhaled.  The mechanized breathing’s horrific cadence pierced his thoughts.  The unnatural echos would be the object of his nightmares in his sleepless nights to come.

Now less than a standard week into his promotion, he anxiously monitored his two control screens as they prepared to capture the Millennium Falcon.  The Millennium Falcon.  Clovis heard the stories about this unassuming Rebel YT-1300 Corellian freighter that held Lord Vader’s personal interest.  Rumors had it that Rebel leader Leia Organa and Luke Skywalker himself were cornered on Bespin.  It would be a day to remember for the Empire, if they captured these two Rebel extremists.

Clovis calibrated the 60 mm Point Defense Laser Turrets in the Tactical pit on the Command Bridge.   Then he heard it.  The mechanized breathing.  Darth Vader strode onto the bridge staring out the view screen.  Clovis’ heart skipped a beat as he froze in paralyzed terror.  Lieutenant Commander Ryjo noticed and nudged him at his console.  “Focus, man!” he whispered loud enough for just the two of them to hear.  Clovis breathed in rasps, unable to look at the dark madness that was a sick hybrid machine and man.  “They’ll be in range of our  tractor beam in moments, my lord.”  Admiral Piett said confidently.  “Did your men deactivate the hyperdrive on the Millennium Falcon?” Vader’s synthetic voiced boomed.  “Yes, my lord.”  Piett replied. “Good. Prepare the boarding party and set your weapons for stun.”  Lord Vader continued to gaze out of the view screen.  “Yes, my lord.”  Piett replied, opening his comlink. Finally, we’ll have both Princess Leia and Luke Skywalker.  Surely this will cripple the Rebellion. Clovis thought at his console.

Clovis forced himself to glance upwards to see Vader standing on the bridge, watching as TIE fighters chased the Millennium Falcon.  Clovis visibly cringed as the cadence ofVader’s synthesized breathing grew slightly faster.  “Luke.” Clovis heard Vader whisper.  Luke? Skywalker? He turned to see if the other Tactical Officers heard, but if they did they were busy at their consoles, pretending they did not.  Probably for the better.  “Son, come with me.” Clovis thought he heard Vader whisper. What?? Son?? Was Clovis hearing things?  He thought himself mad.  Did Darth Vader just say….who’s son?? Clovis wondered incredulously.  He abruptly rose from his console and crossed the Tactical Pit to get nearer to Vader.  He pretended to be monitoring the console next to the Tactical Gunner.  The two Imperial Officers exchanged looks of understanding, and confusion.

Luke… it is your destiny.”  There was no mistaking what Clovis knew he heard.  Skywalker??  Was Vader whispering about Skywalker?  Who was he talking to??  Clovis thought he was going mad.  Who’s son??  His heart and thoughts raced. Did Vader infer Skywalker was his son??  Admiral Piett’s command brought him back momentarily.  “Alert all commands. Ready for the tractor beam.”  Clovis heard Vader’s mechanized breathing slightly increase.  He turned his gaze to the giant view screen as the Star Destroyer closed in on the Millennium Falcon.

The Falcon soared into infinity and away from the huge Star Destroyer which by contrast, stood still.  Admiral Piett and another Captain glanced at Vader in terror.  Clovis froze, terrified.  Mechanized breathing echoed across the bridge.  We’re all dead.  Dead.  Clovis thought, paralyzed in terror.

Darth Vader turned slowly and walked off the bridge, his hands clasped behind his back in a contemplative gesture.  The Sith Lord’s mechanized breathing echoed across the bridge and in Lieutenant Commander Clovis’ mind.

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Endor moon orbit, Second Death Star – SHUTTLE DOCKING BAY

The galaxy was falling apart, chaos reigned everywhere.  Evacuation orders on the Second Death Star, had been issued by each sector’s Commanding Officers.  “There’s no time, Jamyl hurry!”  Commander Cyan Jove urged his long time mate.  Another loud rumble shook him and every other scurrying Imperial officer off balance.  Commander Jamyl Jove Spica couldn’t believe it had come to this.  She had no doubt the Emperor would regroup the fleet and wipe out the Rebels in one final blow they would never see coming.  It would not be from this battle station though.  She and Cyan heard unfounded rumors the Empire had began construction on a third much larger battle station.  It seemed the entire Rebel fleet was engaged.  We will fight the extremist swine to their deaths. She thought confidently.  Smoked and fumes cascaded about the Shuttle Docking Bay.

We’ve got to get out of here.  Orders are to regroup on the Vigilance.  Rae has the Rebels driven back on the far side of Endor.”  Jove shouted.  Cyan Jove and Jamyl Spica were life long friends of Admiral Rae Sloane, commander of the Star Destroyer Vigilance.  They ducked and sprinted towards a docked shuttle as sections of the Docking Bay ceiling bulkhead began to collapse.  Out of the corner of his eye, Commander Cyan saw two black clad figures stand out.  He turned and stumbled in disbelief.  There, in the Docking Bay, a black clad Rebel was dragging the unmoving body of Darth Vader.

By the stars…! ” Cyan Jove exclaimed in shock.  Another loud rumble and quake shook the Docking Bay and knocked them off their feet.  Commander Spica recognized the black clad man dragging Darth Vader.  She read the intelligence uplinks and saw the holovid archives.  “That’s Skywalker!”  She exclaimed.  “Luke Skywalker??”  Cyan was entering a state of shock.  “Yes! That’s him!” Jamyl said in disbelief. “What in the…”  but Jamyl cut him off before he could finish.  Were the rumors she heard true?  That Skywalker really was the Son of the mad Sith cultist?  She grabbed Cyan.  “Cyan!  Now!”  Her mate stared in shock as the scene unfolding before them.  Luke Skywalker was dragging the lifeless body of Darth Vader onto a nearby shuttle.

By the stars….” Cyan spat in shock.  The Docking Bay shook with another loud rumble.  Cyan and Jamyl ran onto another shuttle.  Darth Vader was dead.  The galaxy was falling apart.


THX-1138 (1971)

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#NerdAlert! Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the Nerd Headquarters somewhere in Leilah Publications’ nerd lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures within our solar system, alien monsters, classic vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your Nerdy download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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SCI-FI SATURDAY! CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: THX-1138 (1971)

The directorial debut of the creative genius behind the Star Wars saga.  In the future, mankind lives in vast underground cities and free will is outlawed by means of mandatory medication that controls human emotion. But when THX 1138 (Robert Duvall) and LUH 3417 (Maggie McOmie) stop taking their meds, they wake up to the bleak reality of their own existence and fall in love with each other in the process. But love is also illegal in this Orwellian dystopia, and the act of making love has made both of them outlaws on the run from an army of robotic police.

 

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THX 1138 1971 from Night Owl on Vime


Gandahar (1988)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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20149483SCI-FI SATURDAY! CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: GANDAHAR (1988)

GANDAHAR is a 1988 French animated science fantasy film The original version was directed and written by René Laloux, and was based on Jean-Pierre Andrevon’s novel Les Hommes-machines contre Gandahar (The Machine-Men versus Gandahar).

My quest began with a riddle. ‘In a thousand years, Gandahar was destroyed, and and all its people massacred. A thousand years ago, Gandahar will be saved, and what can’t be avoided will be.”  -Sylvain

This animated film by René Laloux is set on the planet Gandahar, where peace reigns and poverty is unknown. The utopian lifestyle is upset by reports of people at the outlying frontiers being turned to stone. Sent to investigate, Prince Sylvain (John Shea) crashes and is rescued by the Deformed, hideous genetic experiments gone wrong and left to fend for themselves. With their help, Sylvain discovers that the Metamorphosis, a gigantic brain also created in an experiment, is trying to destroy Gandahar.

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LIGHT YEARS (aka Gandahar or Metal Men) from Night Owl on Vimeo.


Aelita: Queen of Mars (Soviet Russian, 1924)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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aelitaSCI-FI SATURDAY! CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: AELITA: QUEEN OF MARS (Soviet Russian, 1924)

Aelita: Queen of Mars with English subtitles is a Soviet silent film directed by Yakov Protazanov and released in 1924. It was based on Alexei Tolstoy’s novel of the same name. In its performances in the cinemas in Leningrad, Dmitri Shostakovich played on the piano the music he provided for the film.

The main focus of the story is the daily lives of a small group of people during the post-war Soviet Union, the enduring importance of the film comes from its early science fiction elements. It primarily tells of a young man, traveling to Mars in a rocket ship, where he leads a popular uprising against the ruling group of Elders, with the support of Queen Aelita who has fallen in love with him after watching him through a telescope.

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Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1936)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!


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SCI-FI SATURDAY! CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1936)

Sweeney-ToddGeorge King’s original classic begins in Nineteenth Century, in London, the barber Sweeney Todd invites lonely and wealthy costumers in the port to his barbershop on the nearby Fleet Street and murders them to take their money, while his associate Mrs. Lovatt and owner of a bakery below is barbershop gets rid off the bodies. Sweeney uses his fortune to help the fleet owner Stephen Oakley with the intention to force his daughter Joanna to marry him. However, the beloved Joanna’s boyfriend Mark Ingerstreet returns rich from his last voyage and Sweeney decides to kill him and steal his fortune in pearl, making Mrs. Lovatt jealous with the situation.

 

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The Hands of Orlac (1924)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!


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SCI-FI SATURDAY! CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: THE HANDS OF ORLAC (1924)

the-hands-of-orlac-cover2Orlac is a world famous pianist. One day he is badly hurt in a big train wreck. He is in danger of losing both his hands so his wife begs the doctors to save them. They eventually manage to transplant his hands with those of another deceased person. After his recovery Orlac discovers that there is something seriously wrong with his new pair of hands — it is as if they had a will of their own. But Orlac doesn’t know that they actually belonged to a dangerous murderer.

 

 

220px-The_Hands_of_Orlac_VideoCoverLike his more famous The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Robert Wiene’s The Hands of Orlac is ponderous but indelible.  The film is full of castration imagery, Freudian intimations (including a patriarchal ogre in a twisted castle), and assorted perversities (like the wife’s erotic yearning to be touched), yet next to the relentlessly distorted subjectivity of Caligari, Wiene’s handling here seems almost minimalist, keeping the camera angles mostly balanced as the horrors materialize through stark atmosphere and Veidt’s extraordinary physical expressiveness. Wiene paces the film like a funeral, ending it with one of the most bizarre conclusions in German expressionism.

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Little Shop of Horrors (1960)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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SCI-FI SATURDAY!  CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS (1960)

little_shop_of_horrors_theSeymour Krelboin (Jonathan Haze) works in the Skid Row flower shop owned by Mr. Mushnik (Mel Welles). In his spare time, Seymour creates a new plant species he names Audrey Junior in honor of his girlfriend Audrey (Jackie Joseph). Audrey Junior begins speaking and demands to be fed human blood and flesh, convincing Seymour to kill a railroad detective, a sadistic dentist and a trollop. Seymour’s guilt over the deaths forces him to confront Audrey Junior in a final confrontation. A young Jack Nicholson has only a small part.as Farb’s masochistic patient, Wilbur Force. Later, however, as the actor’s career began to take off, he was prominently featured on the home-video releases to help generate interest in the film.

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Last Woman On Earth (1960)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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SCI-FI SATURDAY!  CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: LAST WOMAN ON EARTH (1960)

lwecoverArmageddon, repressed sexuality and social mores cast aside, this film is a delightful apocalyptic film noir romp with a classic Post Nuclear mis en scene. A contemporary of “The World, the Flesh and the Devil,” “Seven Days in May,” “On the Beach,” “Fail Safe” and Stanley Kubrik’s period masterpiece “Dr. Strange Love – or How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love the Bomb.” Typical Roger Corman unevenness, production values and no-name cast, but superior to his many monster movies – has more of a “Twilight Zone” or “The Outer Limits” feel.  Screenwriter Robert Towne didn’t have the completed script finished on time. Rather than paying to have both an actor and a screenwriter on location, Roger Corman saved money by drafting Towne to act in the movie as lawyer Martin Joyce (under the name Edward Wain).

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This Island Earth (1955)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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SCI-FI SATURDAY!  CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: THIS ISLAND EARTH (1955)

Film1955-ThisIslandEarth-OriginalPosterThis Island Earth (1955) directed by Joseph M. Newman and Jack Arnold is based on the novel of the same name by Raymond F. Jones which was originally published in the magazine Thrilling Wonder Stories as three related novelettes: “The Alien Machine” in the June 1949 issue, “The Shroud of Secrecy” in December 1949, and “The Greater Conflict” in February 1950.  Scientist Cal Meacham (Rex Reason) solves a mysterious puzzle that allows him access to a highly secretive program — led by the mysterious Exeter (Jeff Morrow) — that has assembled the world’s greatest scientific minds in an attempt to quickly learn how to generate and store nuclear power. But with the help of fellow scientists Ruth Adams (Faith Domergue) and Steve Carlson (Russell Johnson), Meacham soon discovers that his host is not what he claims to be.

 

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This Island Earth (1955) – Feature by FilmGorillas


Fando y Lis (1968)

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#NightOwl!  Each week live from Phoenix, Arizona the Night Owl’s Sci-Fi Cinema hosts FREE vintage U.S., and classic foreign Sci-Fi films!

Tired of remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, no originality? KEEP IT CLASSIC ON SCI-FI SATURDAY & SUNDAY!  #keepitclassic Straight from the his desert lair, the Night Owl brings you Intergalactic invasions, space operas in a galaxies far far way, quantum twists, alien sex, time travel, forbidden planets, attacks & adventures in our solar system, alien monsters, vampires, mad scientists, werewolves, – all vintage and classic science fiction and horror for your download, bookmark, and FREE entertainment!

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SCI-FI SATURDAY!  CLASSIC FEATURE ::: Tonight’s film ::: Alejandro Jodorowsky’s FANDO Y LIS (1968)

Fando Y Lis is Alejandro Jodorowsky’s first feature-length film, based on a play of the same name by Fernando Arrabal. When it premiered at the Acapulco Film Festival in 1968, a riot broke out over what was perceived to be its blasphemous nature and the film was subsequently banned in Mexico.

fando-669x1024Filmed in black and white and with a very low budget, the film follows Fando (Sergio Kleiner) and his paraplegic lover Lis (Diana Mariscal) as they make their way through a grim post-apocalyptic landscape searching for the town of Tar. The mythic town is rumored to make all of your dreams come true. Along the way, they meet up with a very strange cast of characters. They come upon a ruined town where the women try to lure Fando into sex games and Lis is forced to fend for herself. Other scenarios involve people bathing in mud, where Fando leaves Lis to stand on her own for a while; a group of cross-dressers who dress Fando and Lis in each other’s clothing in a surreal gender bending scene; and a rather unsettling scene where Fando undresses Lis and allows strange men touch her naked body. One sequence in particular involves four old women playing cards, with the winner of each hand getting up close and personal with a young, buff man. I can’t say why, but for me the depravity of this scene had a similar disturbing feel to Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Salo, or the Hundred Days of Sodom, which wasn’t released until 1975. By the time the film reaches its conclusion, Lis has been transformed into a Christ-like figure.

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