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Crimes of Passion (1984)

Crimes of Passion

Director:Ken Russell
Cast:Kathleen Turner, Anthony Perkins
Genre:Film, Drama

By Ian Grey | Posted

At night, prim clothing designer Joanna Crane (Kathleen Turner) dons an electric-blue Betty Page wig and a skintight mini and descends into a steel-walled, peephole-packed sex pit to become China Blue, gum-smacking ultra-whore and sater of omnivorously pervo appetites. For a price, she'll role-play a nun, a stewardess, or, with particular gusto, a dominatrix specializing in humiliating cops. (Astride one willing flatfoot, she memorably quips, "I never sat on a face I didn't like.") Her number-one fan/peephole watcher is "Reverend" Peter (Anthony Perkins), who strokes a knife-edged chrome dildo for spiritual support. Her accidental love interest is a support-group addict named Bobby (John Laughlin). All three will cross paths, resulting in lunatic plot twists that are the private domain of our patron saint of febrile dementia, Ken Russell. Unlike other Russell efforts that collapse under the weight of their deranged singularities, Crimes of Passion is--relatively-speaking--a remarkably sustained, entertaining cruise through carnal creepiness. Turner has a great time slutting it up beyond prosaic concepts of camp, Perkins literally drools over his chance to lampoon his Psycho rep, and Russell, via techniques known only to the certifiable, manages some actual insights into the dark side of our collective libido. Um, really.

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